Motivation: how to increase and maintain it

Psychology | 2021-03-09
Motivation is more or less expressed in many of our actions. Sometimes we mistakenly imagine that it should be an enthusiastic arousing wonderful feeling that motivates us to take on important work, but in reality, it is just one shade of motivation. In the same way, it expresses itself when we lie on the couch watching Netflix and snacking instead of doing sports, only in this case we feel more motivated to rest than do sports. This is because motivation is a process that stimulates us to meet our needs, desires, and goals. But if we feel like lazybones or are in need to rest quietly someday… That’s how we stay on the couch.
Besides, we expect that motivation will get us going with completing our tasks, studying, keeping up a sporty shape we often hope that it will come to us naturally. That one morning we‘ll wake up and all of a sudden we‘ll be in a mood to run 5 km even if the weather is terrible outside. Sometimes it happens but not that often – it is worth to learn how to create and maintain motivation instead of willingly waiting for it to show by itself.
We present you a few observations, that might help you create and maintain the motivational feeling.
Firstly, start with the simple question, “Why is it important for me to do X?”. When it comes to learning a new skill, developing a habit, or self-improvement, we have to admit that it is a difficult job. How often are we tend to do hard work just to do it? Probably not that often. We prefer to invest our time and energy in those activities that seem important and meaningful to us.
Secondly, set your goals – this is especially important in order to maintain motivation! Remember, these goals should be realistic. Excessively complex goals (far beyond our capabilities) simply demotivate us – we start thinking that it‘s worthless wasting time doing something that is nearly impossible. Meanwhile, overly simple goals (requiring minimal or no effort) inflict only boredom. So, the goal should push you out of the comfort zone and require more effort, but it doesn’t have to scare you with its enormous extent.
Then break down the goal into smaller tasks. What small steps and when you should take them to move towards the goal? Small steps are extremely important to our motivation because following them floods us with joy and pride. This keeps us motivated to continue the activities in which we succeed.
And finally, don’t forget to reward yourself! Who doesn’t like gifts and pleasures, right? Research shows that we are more motivated to do tasks when we know we will get something enjoyable. So, plan on how you will pamper yourself by making significant progress toward or achieving your goal!
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