Last week there was some real lows. This week there have been some major highs.
At one point, it looked like my career was down the toilet. Everything I worked for looked like it was done.
The reality is that when you hit a low point, there’s always an upside. The point where you want to give up is just the beginning of something new and amazing. When you hit that low, it’s so easy to want to give up.
You feel like you can’t go on and the odds are stacked against you.
Everything and everyone feel like they are working against your vision for your life. Most of all, you don’t know why you’ve suddenly hit this giant low point that feels like it’s going to last forever.
Your motivation is non-existent; you get out of bed and feel like crap; you’re not sure what today will mean – or the next for that matter.
All of this is fine. No, I’m not giving you some empty promise or meaningless reason to go on. What I’m telling you is that you must keep going. Even though you feel like you can’t, you must!
“All of these low points mean something. All of these low points turn into one giant moment of triumph if you keep stacking them up like shot glasses after a big night”
Good people are rewarded.
As long as you do your absolute best to be a good person, eventually your life will change.
All those small things you did for people will be remembered.
Someone will give you a chance and believe in you.
An opportunity will come from nowhere that you never expected.
Rewards always come for those who have earned it. How do you earn those rewards? By being a kind, humble and good person that serves the greater good. Let’s dumb it down further. You get the rewards by:
1. Helping people who have nothing
2. Smiling at as many people as you can
3. Answering messages on social media and helping people without getting anything in return
4. Staying positive through books and blogs like this
5. Waiting out the winter cold for summer to come into your life again
This list of five things is how you remain a good person through the chaos that we all experience. Many people say “That sounds easy Tim, but it’s harder than you think.”
That’s why I’ve made it practical with these five points.
How my luck changed this week.
I followed this formula I’ve laid out, and this week my luck changed. All of a sudden, I got multiple opportunities to do work that I love and get paid well for it so that I can focus on my blogging.
The messages I got with these opportunities all started with something like this:
“Thank you for sharing your story and having the guts to do so. You’ve inspired me and I appreciate it. I’d love to chat to you about opportunity X. Are you free for a few minutes?”
Then I got two more emails from television networks wanting me to spread some inspiration on their respective shows.
Your luck will change and opportunities will be presented to you if you keep going, never give up and continue being a good person.
It’s a long road towards getting up close and personal with your most important goal but if you stay the path, stay focused and be the person that makes you proud, it will happen.
So, if you’ve ever felt like I felt when my career went down the toilet last week, or you’re feeling that way right now, you must keep going.
I believe you can get what you seek if you remain focused and don’t let the negative emotions in your head take over. I know it’s tough but that’s no excuse. If you want your goals bad enough, then you’ll keep motivated to push through the rejection and failure.
Use selflessness to change your perspective. Look at yourself in the third person. See who you are now and who you can be. All of us can be leaders and when we look at ourselves without our self-talk and ego’s in the way, we can see who we really are.
Dare to dream a little. Don’t be afraid to think big. If you have crazy, audacious goals, then that’s even better.
Don’t be talked out of your mission.
Let your passion rip through the barriers that stand in your way.
Never give up. Keep going.
If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net
How to Stay Motivated to Achieve Your Goals
Time is the raw material of our lives. How we choose to spend it, shapes our life accordingly. So having the motivation to spend it on achieving goals is crucial to creating a life we want.
What is Motivation?
The Oxford dictionary defines motivation as the desire or willingness to do something – our drive to take action.
Scientifically, motivation has its roots in the dopamine pathways of our brains. When we do something that feels good, that’s dopamine kicking in. Our actions are driven by the desire for that reward (the good feeling).
Author Steven Pressfield describes motivation more practically. He says we hit a point where the pain of not doing something becomes greater than the pain of doing it. He sees motivation as crossing the threshold where it’s easier to take action than it is to be idle. Like choosing to feel awkward while making sales calls over feeling disappointed about a diminishing bank account.
However you choose to think about it, we all want to harness motivation to achieve our goals.
How to Get Motivated
James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits, says that most people misunderstand motivation. They think that motivation is what gets us to take action. In reality, motivation is often the result of action, not the cause of it. Once we start a task, it’s easier to continue making progress. Like Isaac Newton’s first law: objects in motion stay in motion.
This means most of the resistance when working on your goals comes right before we start. Since motivation naturally occurs after we start, we need to focus on making starting easier.
4 Ways to Make Starting Easier
1. Schedule it
One reason people can’t get started on things is that they haven’t planned when to do it.
When things aren’t scheduled it’s easier for them to fall by the wayside. You’ll end up hoping motivation falls in your lap or hoping that you’ll muster enough willpower to get it done.
An article in the Guardian said, “If you waste resources trying to decide when or where to work, you’ll impede your capacity to do the work.”
2. Measure something
It’s easy to feel uninspired when you don’t know if you’re making progress or what you’re even working towards. That’s why you need to make your success measurable in some way. Starting is easy when you know exactly how much closer your current actions will bring you to achieving your goal.
3. Extrinsic motivation
This type of motivation is from external factors. It can be either positive or negative. Positive motivation consists of incentives like money, prizes, and grades. Negative motivation consists of deterrents like being fired, having a fight, or being fined. Extrinsic motivation doesn’t work effectively long-term, but it can work well in the short term to get you started on something.
4. Make it public
Keep yourself accountable by telling friends and family your goals, or even sharing them on social media. This makes it easier to start something because you’re pressured to not let others down.
How to Stay Motivated Long Term
When we say we want to feel motivated to do something, we don’t want to be pushed or guilted into doing a task. We want to be so attracted and drawn to the idea that we can’t resist not taking action. That’s why it’s important to build a foundation that will set you up for consistency.
These are 5 techniques that will help you do just that:
1. Stay in your goldilocks zone
The goldilocks zone is when a task is the perfect level of difficulty—not too hard and not too easy. In this zone, we reach peak motivation and focus.
For example, let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against a 4-year-old. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become bored and not want to play. Now let’s say you’re playing a serious tennis match against Serena Williams. On this level of difficulty, you’ll quickly become demotivated because the match is too challenging.
The Goldilocks zone is in the middle of that spectrum. You want to face someone with equal skill as you. That way you have a chance to win, but you have to focus and try for it. Adjusting your workload and goals over time to stay within your Goldilocks zone keeps you engaged and motivated long-term.
2. Pursue intrinsically motivated goals
Being intrinsically motivated to achieve a goal is when you want to achieve it for what it is. There are no external factors like a reward or the risk of being fired. The drive behind your actions is coming from within.
For most intrinsic goals we pursue them because they will enrich our lives or bring us closer to fulfillment. That makes these goals extremely sustainable long-term because they directly affect our quality of life and the things we care about.
3. Use “chunking”
Chunking is the technique of breaking down a goal into smaller short-term targets. By doing this you achieve multiple successes in your pursuit of the main goal. This triggers the brain’s reward system and drives you to keep going.
Traditionally, you may set a goal that you expect to achieve in one year. That’s a long time to commit without seeing any results along the way. By chunking your goals into monthly or quarterly targets, you get the consistent positive reinforcement you need to stay motivated long-term.
For example, instead of trying to lose 50 pounds in one year, try to lose 4 pounds every month for 12 months.
4. Be flexible
We’re all victims of circumstance. Things happen along our journey that we can either adjust to or quit because of. That’s why it’s important to have leeway and flexibility when you’re pursuing a goal. If you expect everything to go perfectly, the inevitable failure can make you disengaged and desireless. When you plan for things to go wrong, you make sure you can keep up for the long haul.
5. Pursue your goals in a sustainable fashion
Don’t lose hope when you’re not an overnight success. Overnight successes are the 1%—for the most part, they don’t exist. What we see as an “overnight success” is actually countless hours of work behind the scenes finally hitting a tipping point. Pursuing goals is a story of patience, persistence, and unseen effort.
Don’t compare yourself to others. Comparison is a recipe for a drop in self-confidence and satisfaction. It also cultivates a mindset where you think you haven’t done enough. As a result, you may raise your expectations and put more pressure on yourself.
This is pointless because things worth achieving take time. So we obviously won’t compare to the things around us when starting.
Mastering motivation is a superpower. With that ability at your fingertips, you can accomplish your goals and shape a life you want to live in.
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