I wouldn’t call myself a very motivated person. I’ve set piles of goals and hardly reached any because of pure laziness and lack of motivation.
I could write a 7-page paper, have it in under the wire with a pretty good grade. If I know someone is coming over, the house can be spick and span in less than 10 minutes. If a project is lagging, I’ll be the first to pick up the pieces and make sure it’s ready.
I was lost as to why I couldn’t make anything work when I had the time. Maybe you don’t have that issue – just know I’m sitting here jealous you can lose weight, read more, or routinely clean the toilet without dangling a Reeses in front of your nose. But here’s the thing, it took me a while to figure out the tactical steps I needed to make things happen.
Here are a few things that help me when I’m in the mood to be intentional –
01. BE DEDICATED
Wait until you’re good and ready to throw something out the window before starting a plan. If you feel so-so and aren’t fully invested, even the best plans will fail. Sure, I’d love to lose weight, but I’d rather wear leggings to Thanksgiving. That mindset won’t work. I have to get to the throw-hands-up-and-everything-else-out stage for me to take the stand to say okay, NOW I’m all in.
02. GET MATERIALS
Sure, this isn’t absolutely necessary, you can start scrawling on a napkin and big things can come of it. But if I attempt a plan un-fully-prepared (its a thing), the second I can’t find my pen or my notebook isn’t ready – better to wait another year 😉
This year, I’ve grabbed a few things to mix and make work. I ordered my Powersheets for the first time last year and finally got into the groove of using it (it’s all about goal setting with a purpose and breaking things down). I took Think Creative Collective’s course – Trello For Business – and DANG it was a game changer. I’ve always been a paper planner person, but I’ve never gotten so much done in such a strategic way than since implementing Trello. Give it a try.
03. FIND OUT YOUR TYPES
I know, I know, enough of the personality tests, but I’m obsessed with them, therefore, you should be, too. Here’s my suggestion and why – take the following 3 tests –
A: Myers-Briggs because it’ll give a sense of your natural needs from yourself + others (if you took it over a year ago, you should re-up).
B: 16 personalities to help navigate how you react and what you need from your relationships and workplace.
C: This test to understand your motivation (intrinsic or extrinsic) and what type of help you need to stay motivated.
For me it’s INFJ, Advocate, Extrinsic – needs to develop a clear vision about how to best serve the common good needs to express creativity and insight, to know they are helping people “will not be motivated if the task doesn’t seem important enough”
Find out what elements of your nature you can lean into to develop change.
04. FIND A FRIEND
I’ve tried accountability with many people before – for organization, working out, no sweets, water, etc the list goes on, but it’s taken me a few years to find the type of friend I need in order to stay in motion. Not just any friend, my friends, oh no.
A: A friend who has your best at heart – nothing worse than starting a process with someone you can feel harboring resentment about your success, progress, or movement.
B: A friend who’s walked with you – if you haven’t been through anything significant together, there’s no foundation to the relationship to make you/them feel invested.
C: A friend who is willing to call you out – goes along with B, but if you don’t have a strong foundation, there’s no level of comfortability or acceptance to be able to say what needs to be said (and HOW you need it said).
D: A friend who has a similar accountability need whether it be business, personal, marriage, health and fitness, etc – also nothing worse than feeling like you have a million things to work on and your buddy is a-okay.
E: A friend who is ready to text, Google Hangout, FaceTime, letter write, call, pigeon message, or morse code you to stay up to date – if it takes a weekly Google Hangout call or a daily text, choose someone who will not be bothered by you and vice versa.
05. DOCUMENT PROGRESS
The worst feeling is looking back and thinking nothing you did make a difference – that’s usually where I start sliding back down the hill. My favorite part of my FitBit is the weight level where it’ll tell me each day how I compare to 10 months ago. Now when it starts inching the wrong way, BOO, but normally it’s comforting to see visual progress each day. Have a plan of how you’ll monitor change.
Not marking progress is a design for disaster.
06. HAVE A BACKUP PLAN
Be honest with yourself about falling off the horse, if it happens, what will you do? Will you wait for the closest Monday, first, or January? Will you give yourself grace for that day and start fresh the next? Should you pinch yourself and move on with your day (I don’t recommend that one, I’d have bruises)? Having that backup in place will automate what will come next when you fall out of step with your goals.
Are you naturally motivated? Does it take a little more umph? COMMENT below and let me know!