You probably won’t believe this, but you need only two things to keep yourself motivated. The first one is to make things enjoyable. The second one is to benefit from the positive pressure that our society exerts on us. Here is how to use these two tools to stay motivated.
It’s Motivation, Not Discipline
To start with, don’t confuse motivation with discipline. Many people complain that they are not disciplined enough to stick to their plans. While discipline is indeed a positive quality, it has no existence on its own. Discipline is actually the result of the pressure from the establishment. For example, a person who serves in the military is more likely to lead a disciplined life. He will get up early in the morning, go for a run, or do other forms of exercise and perform his duties neatly and on time. That is because he is in a situation where there is tremendous pressure on him to do certain things and to behave in a certain manner. If he doesn’t do what he is supposed to do, his senior officer may yell at him. He may even get de-merited and lose his face in front of his colleagues.
If, on the other hand, he follows the rules, he will become an exemplary soldier who is respected by all. Eventually, he will start enjoying the rewards of being ‘disciplined’. He will get satisfaction from staying fit and doing things well. At this stage, he will not need anything else to keep himself motivated. That means a positive pressure from the society or other establishment can encourage us to lead a disciplined life. The rewards of being disciplined will eventually make it pleasurable and he will stick to it.
Many people who work for themselves often find it harder to stay disciplined and focused. When you work for yourself, you don’t have a boss breathing down on your neck. As a result, you may feel less motivated to work hard. You can still feel the pressure from the society by announcing your goals publicly. When your goals are public, you will feel the pressure to accomplish them. This wouldn’t be possible without discipline.
When you do something on your own, it’s motivation, not discipline. If you don’t have an authority to guide you in the right way, you need to stay motivated on your own.
Positive pressure from the society
Pressure is almost always considered as a bad thing, but it is not quite so. Some amount of pressure is actually good for your development. However, too much pressure is always bad. So, if a situation puts too much pressure on you, it makes sense to stay away from it. Keep things manageable and everything will work out fine.
Here are a few more ways to use public pressure to keep yourself motivated.
Tell your colleagues that you are going to achieve something special. Report to them about your progress. Encourage them to ask you about your goals. Ask for help if you need it. Come up with your own creative ideas to build positive public pressure on you. When people know about your goals and ask about your progress, you will feel the need to achieve them.
Enjoy your goal
Everybody likes to do things that they enjoy doing, but sometimes we will also need to do things that we don’t quite enjoy doing. Positive public pressure can also motivate us to do something that we don’t quite enjoy doing. By focusing on the positive, we can find enjoyment in almost all things.
Finding the enjoyable part of something is easier than you think. It is also possible to learn to love things. If that seems impossible, switch to something else that you enjoy doing more.
When these two principles are used together, they can act as great motivators. In many cases, they are the only things you need to keep yourself motivated.