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CHANGING THE NARRATIVE
Just like anything, motivation comes and goes. For many of us, we feel a surge of motivation for a few weeks and then we fall off the wagon. With the advancement of technology, our patience and attention span has declined, making it hard to stay focused and on track to meet our goals.
This is part of the process unfortunately, we are human and these things happen. But, how much effort do you put into preventing this? How you persevere is just as important.
I’ve put together a list of my top tips and tricks to help keep you on track to meet your goals, check them out.
We all have some sort of want for the future, a dream/vision. Maybe it’s to own your dream house, to work remotely to create more freedom and allow time to travel, running a marathon, or to start and run a successful business! Maybe it’s simply to have more energy, to see family and friends more, to speak another language, to drink alcohol less or even completely.
Take a moment to write out your long-term goals in as much detail as you can. You want to be able to visualise it – like it’s actually happening – each time you read it. Place it next to your bed, or on your bathroom mirror, maybe use it as your bookmark. Somewhere you come across easily each day, and read it each day. Perhaps every morning, and allow that to set a focus for your day.
By visualising your long-term goals every day, it will help keep you focused and on track. Manifest it complete.
Whatever your long-term goal is, your daily habits are the little steps that help you get there. Without having a clear goal, finding motivation is hard. It can feel like there’s no purpose or direction.
If you are struggling to decide on a goal, try speaking to a professional, someone to help evaluate what is important to you and decipher what will bring you joy and fulfilment in the long run.
Consistency is crucial for success. It involves giving a little bit of your time to a specific area each day/week… that’s it! I think we can all agree that giving a part of your day to one task/area for a year (e.g. going for a run or painting) will be more effective than dedicating a single week of a year solely to that same task. The satisfaction and sense of achievement will increase your self-confidence, and the skills developed slowly over time will lead to progress.
Get started by allocating time in the day/week to get you closer to that long-term goal. Avoid giving yourself anything too outrageous to do. Adapt to how you feel and use the time you’ve set aside to do something that will bring you somewhat closer to your goal.
It won’t feel like much at first, because we all have this expectation that applying a lot of effort during a short period should bring instantaneous results. But overnight success is never what it seems. We overlook the years of hard work that have been going on behind the scenes.
“Motivation gets you going, but discipline keeps you growing. That’s the Law of Consistency. It doesn’t matter how talented you are. It doesn’t matter how many opportunities you receive. If you want to grow, consistency is key.” – John C. Maxwell
Is it really achievable to get 15 things done in a day, every single day?
Not usually. Sometimes stuff comes up and we need to be able to adapt and work around it. Next time you set a to-do list, try organising it by setting the top three tasks at the top of the list! That way you are focused on what’s most important. Anything else you get through is just a bonus and sets you ahead for the next day.
If the previous tip isn’t an option for you and everything on your to-do list needs to be done on that day, set each task with a time allowance to keep you on track.
With this in place, you can complete the tasks that take the shortest amount of time to do first. This allows you to blast through multiple tasks on your to-do list in the shortest amount of time, and leaves you feeling chuffed at how much progress you’ve made in the first part of your day. (And who doesn’t love ticking bits off their to-do list!). Also, stay focused on one task at a time, don’t bounce around too much.
This also limits how much of your time you can give to your tasks, creating structure for your day. Parkinson’s Law states “work expands to fill the time allotted for completion.”
For example, I could sit down to write this post on Tuesday, but finish on Thursday because I decide on the deadline OR I could set myself 3 x 60 minute periods to get it done:
This means that after 45 minutes, you can take a break, refuel and then continue with the rest of your list. And it’s much easier to stay disciplined with an end goal in sight, as opposed to writing something that could take a few days or even weeks – who knows. (I’m considering giving up just thinking about it!)
If it’s possible, turn your phone off and move it out of reach. I’m so used to holding my phone that I often pick it up and open social media without intending to. Don’t allow social media to rob you of your day and valuable time.
I’m aware that you may rely on your phone for work, timer, workout plans, recipes, etc. So if you can turn unnecessary notifications off during times you’re trying to be productive, this will limit distractions and keep you focused on the task at hand. It will help you out immensely.
It’s safe to say that most of us have reduced attention spans. Committing to hours of work per day to bring us closer to our goals isn’t motivating at all. But could you give your undivided attention to a task for just 25 minutes at a time?
The POMODORO technique is simple.
This technique makes it easy to get started – set your to-do list. It limits distractions. If something comes up that can’t wait, take your 5 minute break to do it and then start again. It also tells you what you’re doing with your time, perhaps certain tasks take longer than anticipated and need to be split into smaller tasks to make them more achievable.
Read more on the POMODORO technique here.
Lastly, hold yourself accountable. We’re all human and progress isn’t a linear path. Pay attention to when you fall off the wagon, and ask yourself why. Can I prevent that in the future? What happened in my personal life during that period? How did my feelings affect my motivation? Reflect for next time.
Also, it’s important to take note of when you’re consistently motivated. Take note of what has helped you have a successful day/week and try to keep that as part of your plan moving forward.
If you struggle with this, try reaching out and getting a coach to help hold you accountable. Remember, coaches are on your side and want to help you reach your potential. They want you to feel comfortable. Speaking on your experiences can teach you a lot about yourself and can help you break down barriers you didn’t know were holding you back.
At A Body Forever we offer consultations to help you get started on this journey if it seems a bit overwhelming. Click here if you’re interested in getting some support and taking control of your mental and physical health.
Hopefully, there is a tip or two that resonates with you and your style of living. Anytime you need to reset and start again, have another read of this post and try something different.
Thanks for reading.