How to Stay Motivated and Accomplish Your Goals

How to Stay Motivated and Accomplish Your Goals

Motivation is an important factor in accomplishing your goals. Without it, it will be more difficult to find the inspiration to reach for what you initially set your heart and mind to do. Fortunately, when motivation starts to dwindle, there are ways to bring it back. 

Here are some tips to stay motivated and on track to reach your goals:

  1. Visualize your goals.

    Visualization is a powerful, time-tested scientific tool that works at a subconscious level. When you set a goal, try visualizing the things you might see, feel and hear when you attain your goal (for example, the applause and the compliments of your colleagues after you delivered an excellent presentation). A lot of successful athletes use this technique to motivate themselves. They visualize their performance in advance and do this in such a detailed manner, that they can smell the sweat dripping from their face as they reach the finish line. An experiment was conducted with athletes in which some athletes were asked to run, and others were asked to visualize ‘as if’ they were running. Surprisingly the muscles of the athletes who visualized, responded in the same way as the people who actually ran, showing that the brain cannot clearly differentiate between reality and strong visualization! The brain perceives the visualized experience to be real, and organizes the body’s chemistry and physiology to respond accordingly. 

  1. Scrutinize your motivators.

    Know the specific reasons you want to attain a specific goal, and write these reasons down. For instance, if you want to attain something for your loved ones, this could be a powerful motivator as you’re not just motivated by self-interest. While self-interest is a good motivator, wanting to accomplish a goal for something other than self-interest can have more impact in sustaining your motivation for a long time. Some questions to ask are:

What are the greatest benefits for me if I achieve my goal?

What all will change positively in my life?

How will my life change when I achieve this?

How will I feel and how will my future look if I achieve this?

What kind of person can I become if I achieve this?

  1. Accept your mistakes.

    The path to attaining success may not be easy. There will be roadblocks along the way, and you’ll probably make mistakes in the process. Instead of beating yourself up for those mistakes, use them as learning opportunities. Don’t let them be the reasons you stop reaching for your goals. Use them as opportunities to learn what not to do in the future. Everyone makes mistakes! In fact, champions fail even more because they set higher goals than anyone else who chooses to be in the comfort zone. The only difference is how they treat their failures – champions learn from them, become stronger, and keep going. 

  2. Break down your main goal into chunks.

    Break your main goal into more task-oriented, smaller goals. Set a deadline for each one. For instance, if your primary goal is re-organizing your closet, know exactly when and where you should start. It could be your shoes, then belts and accessories, then shirts, etc. Breaking down a huge task into smaller ones will make the process more manageable, and will help to prevent the levels of stress which can damage motivation. By chunking it down or creating milestones, a big goal becomes more achievable and measurable. When you can measure and document progress and small success, this will help to sustain and builds more motivation.

  3. Compete with yourself.

    There are times when you tend to compare yourself with others and try to reach for perfection – making it harder to reach your goals. This can have a huge impact on your motivation, thereby sabotaging it, instead of maximizing it to push yourself forward. With that said it makes sense to compete with self and work on continuous improvement rather than getting bogged down by others or trying to race with others. It is definitely important to learn from others and their strategies, and model them if required, but remember, ‘whenever we just try to overtake people on the highway there will be always someone or the other ahead of us’.

Sustaining motivation can be tough, but with the right mindset and motivational training, you can tap into your inner motivation, harness it, and sustain it.


About the Author: Harrish Sairaman

Harrish SairamanHarrish Sairaman is a well-known motivational teacher in India, helping many to achieve which once seemed unachievable like increase motivation, leadership, Corporate Training, decrease stress etc. through Motivational Training Programs, Leadership training programs, team building training programs, Entrepreneur Coaching and Individual Coaching to name a few. His ability to deliver life changing, scientifically sound, relevant and metaphysical messages in a powerful, humorous and insightful manner integrated with high energy has earned him a reputation of bringing about a difference with a difference! 

Find out more about Harrish on www.harrishsairaman.comFacebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

 

2 Comments

Muhammad

Thanks for the tips. just like what Mr. Fawzy told me at almentor, just focus to your original goal and don’t make hasty decisions.

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Behaviour is never from ‘bad’. It’s from ‘big’. Big hungry, big tired, big disconnection, big missing, big ‘too much right now’. The reason our responses might not work can often be because we’ve misread the story, or we’ve missed an important piece of it. Their story might be about now, today, yesterday, or any of the yesterdays before now. 

Our job isn’t to fix them. They aren’t broken. Our job is to understand them. Only then can we steer our response in the right direction. Otherwise we’re throwing darts at the wrong target - behaviour, instead of the need behind the behaviour. 

Watch, listen, breathe and be with. Feel what they feel. This will help them feel you with them. We all feel safer and calmer when we feel our people beside us - not judging or hurrying or questioning. What don’t you know, that they need you to know?♥️
We all have first up needs. The difference between adults and children is that we can delay the meeting of these needs for a bit longer than children - but we still need them met. 

The first most important question the brain needs answered is, ‘Is my body safe?’ - Am I free from threat, hunger, exhaustion, pain? This is usually an easier one to take care of or to recognise when it might need some attention. 

The next most important question is, ‘Is my heart safe?’ - Am I loved, noticed, valued, claimed, wanted, welcome? This can be an easy one to overlook, especially in the chaos of the morning. Of course we love them and want them - and sometimes we’ll get distracted, annoyed, frustrated, irritated. None of this changes how much we love and want them - not even for a second. We can feel two things at once - madly in love with them and annoyed/ distracted/ frustrated. Sometimes though, this can leave their ‘Is my heart safe?’ needs a little hungry. They have less capacity than us to delay the meeting of these needs. When these needs are hungry, we’ll be more likely to see big feelings or big behaviour. 

The more you can fill their love tanks at the start of the day, the more they’ll be able to handle the bumps. This doesn’t have to be big. It just has to be enough. It might look like having a cuddle, reading a story, having a chat, sitting with them while they have breakfast or while they pat the dog, touching their back when they walk past, telling them you love them.

All brains need to feel loved and wanted, and as though they aren’t a nuisance, but sometimes they’ll need to feel it more. The more their felt sense of relational safety is met, the more they’ll be able to then focus on ‘thinking brain’ things, such as planning, making good decisions, co-operating, behaving. 

(And if this today was a bumpy one, that’s okay. Those days are going to happen. If most of the time their love tanks are full, they’ll handle when it drops a little. Just top it up when you can. And don’t forget to top yours up too. Be kind to yourself. You deserve it as much as they do.)♥️
Things will always go wrong - a bad decision, a good decision with a bad outcome, a dilemma, wanting something that comes with risk. 

Often, the ‘right thing’ lives somewhere in the very blurry bounds of the grey. Sometimes it will be about what’s right for them. Sometimes what’s right for others. Sometimes it will be about taking a risk, and sometimes the ‘right’ thing just feels wrong right now, or wrong for them. Even as adults, we will often get things wrong. This isn’t because we’re bad, or because we don’t know the right thing from the wrong thing, but because few things are black and white. 

The problem with punishment and harsh consequences is that we remove ourselves as an option for them to turn to next time things end messy, or as a guide before the mess happens. 

Feeling safe in our important relationships is a primary need for all of us humans. That means making sure our relationships are free from judgement, humiliation, shame, separation. If our response to their ‘wrong things’ is to bring all of these things to the table we share with them with them, of course they’ll do anything to avoid it. This isn’t about lying or secrecy. It’s about maintaining relational ‘safety’, or closeness.

Kids want to do the right thing. They want us to love and accept them. But they’re going to get things wrong sometimes. When they do, our response will teach them either that we are safe for them to come to no matter what, or that we aren’t. 

So what do we do when things go wrong? Embrace them, reject the behaviour:

‘I love that you’ve been honest with me. That means everything to me. I know you didn’t expect things to end up like this, but here we are. Let’s talk about what’s happened and what can be different next time.’

Or, ‘Something must have made this (wrong thing) feel like the right thing to do, otherwise you wouldn’t have done it. We all do that sometimes. What do you think it was that was for you?’

Or, ‘I know you know lying isn’t okay. What made you feel like you couldn’t tell me the truth? How can we build the trust again. Let’s talk about how to do that.’

You will always be their greatest guide, but you can only be that if they let you.♥️
Whenever there is a call to courage, there will be anxiety - every time. That’s what makes it brave. This is why challenging things, brave things, important things will often drive anxiety. 

At these times - when they are safe, but doing something hard - the feelings that come with anxiety will be enough to drive avoidance. When it is avoidance of a threat, that’s important. That’s anxiety doing it’s job. But when the avoidance is in response to things that are important, brave, meaningful, that avoidance only serves to confirm the deficiency story. This is when we want to support them to take tiny steps towards that brave thing. It doesn’t have to happen all at once.l and it doesn’t matter how long it takes. Brave is about being able to handle the discomfort of anxiety enough to do the important, challenging thing. It’s built in tiny steps, one after the other. 

We don’t have to get rid of their anxiety and neither do they. They can feel anxious, and do brave. At these times (safe, but scary) they need us to take a posture of validation and confidence. ‘I believe you, and I believe in you.’ ‘I know this feels big, and I know you can handle it.’ 

What we’re saying is we know they can handle the discomfort of anxiety. They don’t have to handle it well, and they don’t have to handle it for too long. Handling it is handling it, and that’s the substance of ‘brave’. 

Being brave isn’t about doing the brave thing, but about being able to handle the discomfort of the anxiety that comes with that. And if they’ve done that today, at all, or for a moment longer than yesterday, then they’ve been brave today. It doesn’t matter how messy it was or how small it was. Let them see their brave through your eyes.‘That was big for you wasn’t it. And you did it. You felt anxious, and you stayed with it. That’s what being brave is all about.’♥️
A relationally unsafe (emotionally unsafe) environment can cause as much breakage as as a physically unsafe one. 

The brain’s priority will always be safety, so if a person or environment doesn’t feel emotionally safe, we might see big behaviour, avoidance, or reduced learning. In this case, it isn’t the child that’s broken. It’s the environment.

But here’s the thing, just because a child doesn’t feel safe, doesn’t mean the person or environment isn’t safe. What it means is that there aren’t enough signals of safety - yet, and there’s a little more work to do to build this. ‘Safety’ isn’t about what is actually safe or not, it’s about what the brain perceives. Children might have the safest, warmest, most loving adult in front of them, but that doesn’t mean they’ll feel safe. This is when we have to look at how we might extend bigger cues of warmth, welcome, inclusiveness, and what we can do (or what roles or responsibilities can we give them) to help them feel valued and needed. This might take time, and that’s okay. Children aren’t meant to feel safe with every adult in front of them, so sometimes what they need most is our patience and understanding as we continue to build this. 

This is the way it works for all of us, everywhere. None of us will be able to give our best or do our best if we don’t feel welcome, liked, valued, and free from hostility, humiliation or judgement. 

This is especially important for our schools. A brain that doesn’t feel safe can’t learn. For schools to be places of learning, they first have to be places of relationship. Before we focus too sharply on learning support and behaviour management, we first have to focus on felt sense of safety support. The most powerful way to do this is through relationship. Teachers who do this are magic-makers. They show a phenomenal capacity to expand a child’s capacity to learn, calm big behaviour, and open up a child’s world. But relationships take time, and felt safety takes time. The time it takes for this to happen is all part of the process. It’s not a waste of time, it’s the most important use of it.♥️

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