Wednesday, November 28, 2012

8 Ways to Get Motivated

Lately, I've been feeling drained, which is the opposite of how I want to be and how I need to be in order to make my simple life happen. Motivation is not a mystery, but it is cyclical and therefore easy to get trapped. When you don't get things done, you don't feel like doing things. When you're motivated, you get things done and want to keep going. The trick is to get on the good side of motivation.

1. Start somewhere. Checking one item off the list is often a catalyst for another and another. So, what are you waiting for?

2. Oh, and make lists. I've been talking about making short to-do lists a lot lately, but they are that good. The key is to keep it short and realistic. Make sure the list is somewhere visible so you don't have to make a special point to see it and to give yourself some healthy guilt.

3. Schedule it. "Someday," while sounding like a day of the week, is not on anybody's calendar.

4. Get others involved. Although it would be nice if we could just hold ourselves accountable, we all know the reality is that others motivate us simply because we don't want to look like a slacker. Independence has it merits, but others can often bring out the best in us.

5. Take advantage of opportunities like unexpected spare time or a rainy day. Think to yourself, "Now's a good time to___." The bf usually works weekend nights, so I use that time to do laundry because people in my apartment complex usually have more interesting things to do on Friday and Saturday nights, so the laundry room is free. Rainy days are good days to clean. 

6. Create routines. Kind of like putting it on the schedule but more regular. For example, maybe you don't want to use up valuable weekend time with chores and you don't want to battle weekend crowds at Target, etc., so commit to getting your tasks done some weekday evening or early morning before going to work. Then you'll know you can put things off until that one day and you can be done with it all at once.

7. If you feel overwhelmed with everything on your to-do list, resist the urge to throw up your hands (gross) in desperation. Just take it one thing at a time. Everybody has 10-15 minutes to do something. Start with the things you can do quickly and easily. Then, see #1. 

8. Take care of yourself. Although I believe that motivation comes mostly from our actions, and that actions beget actions, it also comes from what we do to ourselves internally. Eat good food (not just healthy food, but food that makes you happy), get regular exercise, and laugh often. 

What do you do to motivate yourself? What about motivating others? 

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