It’s the new year, and if you are like me, you likely made a list of goals that you want to accomplish. Perhaps you want to pick up a new habit, learn new skills, volunteer. Whatever your goal (or goals) is, the secret to achieving them is to stay motivated. Here are some ways to help you on your journey.
Money won’t motivate you
Don’t assume that money will motivate you. Yeah, sure we could all use some extra cash, but in my opinion, the problem with setting goals like ‘I need more money’ is that as we reach the goal, we set higher goals. That’s because that initial amount will no longer be enough. Similarly, setting goals to please other people will not motivate us.
Make sure they are YOUR goals
Sometimes we set goals on what we think we ‘should’ do. Before you write down your intentions, you should consider your reasons for choosing that goal. Your motivation must be from something intrinsic, that is, something that comes from within, a need, an inner will, instead of something external, material. Ask yourself if this is something that YOU really want.
Keep positive people around
Having a positive person in your life brings comfort. If you ever need a shoulder to cry on, you’ll know who to turn to. Instead of keeping you down in the dumps, they will try to uplift you, even if it’s just lending an ear or lightening up the mood a bit. As human beings, we give and receive inspiration and energy, so it is vital to keep a good group of positive people who inspire you and who can support you in your journey.
Break it down and keep going
If you set a goal that is too big, or too far away, you may feel intimidated to start or, you may feel overwhelmed. The solution to this is to use intermediate goals. There are advantages to using intermediate goals: you can enjoy the journey even if you have not reached the primary goal. You have worked hard to achieve your intermediate goal, and now, you feel more motivated to keep going. You can also better visualize how to reach your end, not be so intimidated.
When setting your goals, always remember to ask yourself: “what will this goal give me?” and always follow the 3 Ps rule: Present, Personal, and Positive. That is, your goal must be written in the present tense, must refer only to you, and must be positive. For example, let’s say you want to lose weight. Your goal might be something like: “I have an improved body.” She is positive. “I don’t want to be fat” is a bad example of a goal. It’s personal, and it’s in the present tense. Putting the goal in the present creates a phenomenon known as Cognitive Dissonance, the thought of contradiction that you create by stating something you are not.