I believe that one of the most significant factors in us accomplishing things and getting things done in our lives is motivation or energy. I think that most of us can make time for the things we want to do. However, a more significant obstacle than time is energy or motivation.
I have noticed that if I am not motivated or don’t have energy, I will not read that book or write that lesson, even if I have time. I want to take a look at how we can stay motivated in our lives to be able to accomplish our tasks and reach our goals.
One, have a deadline.
Isn’t it interesting that we would wait until the day before the deadline to write our essay or do our homework when we were in high school or college? We were all of a sudden motivated to get that paper written. This is the power of the deadline. Before, we could not focus on anything, but suddenly we could write a 3,000-word essay in a couple of hours. Why did that change? Because we had a deadline.
The problem is that after college many times, we no longer have many deadlines in our lives. We will have deadlines at work, but outside of that, we are free to choose what we want to do. So, we must have self-motivation, and part of motivating ourselves is by setting self-imposed deadlines. If you need the motivation to exercise, sign up for a Spartan Race three months away, or if you need the motivation to read, set up an account on Goodreads and set a yearly reading goal. If you need the motivation to finish a project by a specific date, then plan and schedule out deadlines for each step.
I think that it is essential to schedule deadlines for each step in accomplishing your goal. If you only set a deadline for the final result’s achievement, that isn’t going to help you much. However, if you set a deadline for every step to reach that goal, you will be able to accomplish it and not wait until the last week to be overwhelmed.
Two, take a break
I think a big part of being motivated is having enough rest. We need planned times of rest and recovery for our minds, just like an athlete needs it for his body. Many times we are working long hours but not getting much done. We are tired from staying up late last night, so we are not accomplishing much while we are at work or working on a project. We are not motivated enough to focus, and so we spend a few minutes on the task and then a few minutes on social media. We talk with a friend or coworker and then spend a few more minutes on the project. We hardly accomplished anything.
When we are not rested, we can take all day to accomplish a task that would typically take 1 or 2 hours of focused work. While it is easy to think that the busier we are, the more we are getting done, that is usually not the case. I have found that if you take one day a week to really turn off and recharge, then your productivity goes way up for the rest of the week. We should plan a weekly day of rest as well as an hour or two of rest every day.
Three, have a vision.
The most motivated people I know have a vision of what they want to accomplish and know what they need to do to achieve it. They may not write everything down, but they know their goal in life and have a vision of what they want to accomplish. This is so important. Do you have an idea of what you want to achieve in your life?
I was told one time by one of my mentors to write our obituary. It was one of the hardest things that I have ever had to do because you have to sum up your life goals and vision for your life in one or two paragraphs. However, it is a great thing to do because it will help you realize what is important to you and what you should be working towards. Do you know what you want to accomplish in your time here on earth? Do you have a vision? Are you currently working towards that vision? If not, then you should change your profession or manner of living.
A great book about having a vision or dream for your life is a book called the Dreamgiver, which is an allegory about the obstacles and difficulties that we must face and conquer to live a greater life and a life that God would have us live.
I believe that controlling our energy and motivation is just as important as managing our time. We might have time to accomplish something, but if we aren’t motivated or don’t have the energy for it, we will most likely not do it.