Why Do I Lack The Motivation To Do Anything?
It’s completely normal to have periods in your life when you don’t feel like doing anything. It’s almost impossibly to always be on, to always have the drive to keep working towards your goals.
Having goals is one of the easiest ways to build long term motivation. If you’re working towards something, it’s much more motivating than just completing a task that you know you should do like exercise or study.
When you’re setting goals, try and have a target that you want to achieve in every area of your life. It’s a common trap to fall into to just focus on money or health. Try and improve your life in several areas by creating goals and targets that you want to accomplish in the next year or five years.
Having that WHY in place, will keep you going and help you push through those tough times when you don’t want to do anything.
You’re shifting from existing, from going through the motions, to actually living and working towards something. Finding your purpose will help you get into the right mindset that you need to accomplish your goals.
There’s a few mindset shifts that can help you out when you’re lacking motivation.
How To Motivate Yourself
Think Big Picture
Focus on the Process
Focusing on what you are in control of will increase your motivation.
You’re not in control of the number on the scale. What you can control is what you’re eating and how often you’re working out.
You can’t control what amount of money your new business or side hustle is going to make, but you can focus on accomplishing daily tasks that will move you in the right direction and put the pieces in place to help you get to that number.
If you start loving the process, you’ll be a habit and you’ll no longer need motivation. That’s the end goal really, is to move away from wanting or needing motivation to do something.
You want to have the discipline to do it, even when you don’t feel like it.
Find an Accountability System
Accountability can come in many forms but it’s one of the fastest ways to boost your motivation and help you get started with what you know you need to be doing or working on.
You can use public accountability by posting your goal and what you’re going to do on social media or your blog. Knowing that you have friends or family watching you, waiting to see how you do, can be a huge motivator.
You can also find an accountability partner. This could be a friend or you could hire a coach, someone who will meet with you once a month or call you and check in with you on your progress.
When there’s money on the line, that’s one of the biggest motivators. You can promise yourself that if you don’t stick to a certain gym schedule or habit for 30 days, you’re going to donate money to an organization you despise.
Keep a Success Journal
“We often overestimate what we can do in a day, but underestimate what we can do in a year.” – Glen Smith
Are you one of those people who will create a to-do list for the week that’s a mile long? There’s ten or more tasks and if you get through them, you’ll have had a productive day? Those tasks might be returning phone calls or answering an email. It could be doing the laundry or taking out the trash.
But somehow, by the end of the day, only four or five tasks are done, and we end up beating ourselves up over it.
Keeping a success journal is an easy way of reminding yourself that you’re on the right track. It’s motivating to look back over the last week or two and see all of the little wins that you’ve had.
All it takes is five minutes at the end of the day to write down what you’re happy that you’ve achieved. It might be one big thing or four or five small things. But they all add up.
They’re also very easy to forget. By taking the time every weekend or once a month to flip through your success journal, you’ll realize that you are in fact making progress and it will motivate you to keep going.
Watch a Motivating Video
This is a quick way to give yourself a boost in the morning when you might be dreading what’s ahead of you.
Start a playlist on YouTube of videos that will motivate you. There’s so many great ones. It can be a motivational speech or it can be really specific to you.
There’s some fantastic videos for gym or study motivation. Find a few that inspire you and bookmark them.
Play a five or ten minute clip before you sit down to work or before you go out for a run and let it inspire and motivate you.
If you’re trying to motivate yourself to do something, it’s likely that you don’t enjoy it. Maybe it’s something that you have to do or something that you know that you should do. Either way, maybe it’s not pleasant, or it’s hard to get started.
Make sure you reward yourself when you’ve completed that task. Do something for you. It can be as small or as big as you think you need, but it’ll push you through those times when you’re really struggling to get started.
Visualizing has gotten a bad name over the years, but it’s something that athletes have been using for years. If you’re struggling to motivate yourself to do something, think about what it will be like when it’s done.
If you don’t want to study, think about how amazing it’s going to feel when you get that A or when you graduate.
If you don’t want to go to the gym, think about how amazing it’s going to be when you’ve lost ten or twenty pounds and you feel so much healthier.
Let your mind wander and think about all of the benefits.
Just Get Started
I’ve saved the best for last. This is what gets me through tough tasks all of the time. When I don’t want to do something, I’ll set a timer for just five or ten minutes, something relatively painless, and just get started.
After those few minutes are up, chances are, you’ll realize it wasn’t that bad after all. Studying isn’t that hard. Or maybe you did a few push ups and sit ups on a mat at home. That wasn’t so bad. I could probably do that again.
It’s the simplest way I know of to break through that barrier.
As we mentioned earlier, discipline is the ultimate goal. Motivation is temporary and fleeting. Discipline is what makes the difference. You won’t need motivation if you’ve built up the discipline to do what you need to do, even when you don’t feel like it.
Take the time to think about what’s really stopping you from getting started. Is it fear? Do you really dislike the task? Is there anyway you can make it more fun?
Take a step back and look at it from a distance. What will pushing through really do for you? How will your future you thank you?