Tuesday, February 27, 2007

How to stay motivated towards your goals

Most of us begin our goals with zest and enthusiasm but may feel our spirits dampening along the way. We sometimes need a push to stay motivated with regards to our goals.

I am presenting below some strategies to help stay focussed and motivated towards achieving what we set out to achieve.

1. Put a little pressure on yourself:
Tell your family, friends, colleagues, neighbours etc. that you want to achieve so and so thing by such and such date. This can put pressure on yourself to really try hard and achieve the goal by the said date so that you do not feel embarrassed in front of others. A little pressure may be a good thing.

2. Decide a punishment for yourself:
Fix a punishment for yourself if you fail to do something that is required of you. For example - if you decided to walk for 30 minutes daily in order to maintain your fitness, and one fine day you do not feel like getting out of your bed for the daily walk, tell yourself that if you do not get up within the next 15 or so minutes then you are going to punish yourself by not eating breakfast today.

Decide on a punishment that is unpleasant for you but not too harsh. Try to avoid extremes.

3.Invest in your goals:
Another technique is to invest some amount of money in your goals so that you are forced to stay motivated. If your goal is to do a workout everyday for an hour - buy a new pair of shoes or buy some new track suit to wear while exercising. Or else buy some new clothes which you can only wear if you lose some weight. Spending some money on your goals should force you to keep working on your desired goal.

4. Break goals into smaller parts:
If you have a long term goal break it into smaller parts. Break each goal into small actionable steps which you can do everyday. We humans like some feedback on how we are progressing. By dividing your goal into smaller parts, you are setting up an effective feedback mechanism to measure your progress.

If your goal is to write a book within a year, then have goals to write atleast 1 chapter every month. Have further goals to write for a specified amount of time every day and commit yourself to it daily.

5. Focus on benefits:
We tend to move away from pain and move towards pleasure. While in pursuit of a goal there may be some actions which we may not feel comfortable doing and may try to avoid them. For such things instead of focussing on the activity itself, think about the benefits of doing that activity.

For example - if you don't feel like jumping out of your bed for your daily jogging routine, focus on the benefits that jogging might bring you like better health, a healthy heart, physical stamina, more enjoyable life, fun with family etc. By focussing on the benefits, you are associating jogging with pleasure rather than pain. If you do this long enough then you may no longer feel difficulty in getting up for your morning jog.

6. Apply five more rule:
Whenever you are doing some important activity and feel tempted to give it up, do FIVE MORE. Read FIVE more pages, work for FIVE more minutes, do FIVE more math problems etc. By implementing this strategy, you are pushing past your present mental and physical barriers and setting new limits for yourself.

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Related Articles:
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fatima said...

It is a wonderful article and i noted a few important points hoping that they would come to good use in keeping me motivated.

Thanks and looking forward to more useful and interesting articles.

Anonymous said...

it is really an excellent comment for those who wanna to be special in their life . i am highly motivated by all these comments thanks for make me understand how to look forward in life with obsracles

Anonymous said...

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