Knowing how to stay motivated is important when it comes to getting what you want in life. But for some people, staying focused on their long-term goals can be challenging.
What is motivation?
Motivation is one of the main ingredients for happiness and success in your life. It’s the reason why you take action and move forward with your goals. Knowing what motivates you is a great place to start, but knowing how to maintain that motivation can be problematic. It becomes problematic when obstacles and challenges arise. You may, as many people do, stay focused on the obstacle or the challenge, rather than take a problem-solving approach.
There are dozens of ways in which people stay motivated. You may be inspired by others or life events, or it may come from within you. Some people are driven by targets and great prizes, but for others this can be stressful and demotivating. That’s because motivation is complex and different for everyone. Once you are in tune with what motivates you, you will discover what energises you. This energy will drive you forward and motivate you to make the changes you have been dreaming of in life.
All successful journeys start with knowing where you want to go. Knowing where you want to go in life can be achieved by discovering your passion! Once you discover your passion, get to know your emotional needs. Do you always need a sense of achievement, appreciation or space? These emotional needs will sometimes drive you, hold you back or steer you off course, but recognising your emotional needs, and how you behave in meeting them, will have a big impact on what motivates you in life.
Core values are the principles that are fundamental to you. They are linked to your emotional needs, but there is a subtle difference. True values are not just about yourself – they also include the world around you. They not only meet your needs, but they also meet the needs of others, eg honesty and friendship. In contrast, by meeting your emotional needs, there is a risk you may withdraw into yourself. As a result, you may live life in a more selfish way by pursuing a sense of achievement with no regard for others.
What motivates you to keep going no matter what?
Very early on in my journey to become a Wellbeing Life Coach, I spent time identifying my top-five values. I prioritised them in order of importance. I made sure I differentiated my values from my emotional needs. To understand why my values were so important, I defined them as a statement eg “having close friendships is important and desirable to me because I value the company of others to keep me connected and alive”. Once I consciously gained clarity for my top-five values, I started to live my life in harmony with what was truly important to me.
For me to be true to myself, I found new ways of honouring my emotional needs. I realised what I needed to change emotionally and I made those changes. It enabled me to understand the type of coach I wanted to be. It hasn’t been easy. I have discovered conflicts and challenges along the way. Some of my emotional needs conflicted with others close to me. My need to learn and develop as a coach meant I became overly obsessive with my work – my passion! I recognised this trait in myself and I took time out to rebalance – and as a result I made more time for those close to me.
I considered my motivational map by knowing the difference between my values and my emotional needs. This led to clarity on the bigger goals I wished to achieve. Knowing my values and emotional needs has made my life easier, but I have had to face choices that I previously ignored or didn’t recognise. I had to let go of some things in my life so my emotional need for achievement could be met. The love I have for my work and everything I am achieving means I have less time to play tennis – another one of my passions! I haven’t stopped playing tennis – I just don’t play every day.
How are you going to overcome challenges?
To remain motivated, know what it is you’re really pursuing and why.
Staying motivated is absolutely within your reach. It’s about keeping your end goal in mind and breaking that goal down into manageable smaller steps. Remember – you can do it!
Take the motivational assessment at mindtools.com – Motivational Assessment tool
Here are six helpful tips to keep you motivated and on track so you can successfully achieve your goals:
- Discover your true purpose – take time to understand what you want from life and pursue that purpose with enthusiasm.
- Find your passion – passion is one of the most powerful tools for happiness and deserves to be an area you consistently work on to maintain your motivation.
- Know your core values – your core values truly steer your motivation, which then feeds into your happiness.
- Recognise your emotional needs – listen to positive information every day. If you fill your mind with uplifting and inspiring information, it will keep you energised and motivated.
- Believe in yourself – if you want to be successful in creating the life you desire, you must believe that you can make it happen.
- Make a choice – let go of the things that you don’t enjoy because they will drain you of energy and decrease your motivation.