The 6 most important tips for self-motivation

During this quarantine we all felt it for a while. Boredom and the eternal struggle between exercising and doing something productive or binge-watching an ordinary Netflix show seemed to become smoother. If you put the two side by side, that Netflix show sounds a bit more tempting. No shame in this game, we've all been there. That nasty aftertaste that you sometimes get after eating fast food is also prevalent here.

What is the reason that sometimes we can't find motivation? And how do you ensure that you can relax with peace of mind and binge-watch that show without regrets?

Today I give you the 6 most important tips for self-motivation.

1. Break patterns
First of all, let's assume that watching Netflix and relaxing is allowed and possible. It's about wanting to do something and then choosing not to do it.

That is very simple to explain. People tend to fall into patterns. Why make it difficult when it can be easy? The continuous search for quick solutions and quick gratification means that you can have little patience to build something slowly.

Imagine: “You finally want to start that project, but then you realize that you also need equipment. You also have to go outside and before you know it… you think: 'never mind'.”

Find out what your patterns are. What choices do you make? Do you hit snooze by default before you get up? Do you always do the least fun task at the end of the day? It is very important to get clear about which patterns you have, so that you know how to break them.

2. Find your why
If you don't know or don't have a good reason to do something, it will be hard to get it done. Do things for which you have really strong reasons. If you haven't, consider dropping it and doing something you have a good reason to do.

It comes down to finding your why. Why do you want to start? Because it was suggested by your parents? Did your partner mumble a comment? Once you find your why, you can use that to motivate you to get on with what you want.

3. Stop waiting
Most of us sometimes wish someone else would take care of it for us. However, you are no longer a child. Nobody's coming. No one will pick you up from Smälland. It's up to you now. So don't wait for summer to work on your body. You've been wanting a new clothing style for a while, clear out that closet and make room for those sexy dresses.

4. Small steps, big results
Divide your task or project into small steps. As a habit coach, I have seen with several clients that people often have a tendency to want to do big things very quickly. That can be overwhelming. To avoid disappointment, it's important to focus on that first small step. It is best to do the steps for a maximum of 25 minutes. When you're done, move on to the next one and focus on that.

The small successes keep your motivation high. Keeping your focus away from the big picture prevents you from overthinking, becoming overwhelmed and discouraged. It's amazing how much you can do when you follow this simple method.

Do something small and create a flow. Just clean your desk. Or pay your bills. Or wash the dishes. You just need to start.

5. Focus on systems instead of goals
What often leads to disappointment is that we focus on the result. I want to rapunzel her within a year. And after a year you still have that short spicy haircut. To avoid that disappointment it is important to focus on building systems. For this you make fixed days or times when you will work on your small step. Eventually it becomes automatic to take this step.

6. The 5 second rule
Recently I applied Mel Robbins' 5 second rule. She indicates in her book “The 5 second rule” that real change only comes within the first 5 seconds when you make a decision. Within 5 seconds you will find reasons not to do something. And one of the first to come to mind are “I can do it tomorrow”, “I don't feel like it” and “It's not that important after all”. If you count to 5 and then do it right away, it will give you instant satisfaction.

With these 6 steps I hope it will become easier and easier to motivate yourself. It's not a productivity contest, so don't force yourself to do everything at once. Time to kick ass, babe!

About Ayesha
I'm Ayesha Standar (instagram: @ayeshanoelle ), a habit coach for ambitious young women who want to reach their goals. Ever since I was little, I've had a fascination with what drives people and why people do what they do. Hence it was no surprise that I studied Applied Psychology.

I am a born and raised Amsterdammer with a dry sense of humour. I think it's important that people enjoy life. Don't just exist, live! I hope to achieve that by coaching women to break through their patterns and create successful habits. My coaching style is accessible, fun and solution-oriented.

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