By Jack White
Motivation is so fleeting and difficult to keep in the long run. Everyday worries, complications, the lack of recognition, and self-doubt all stand in the way of feeling inspired and ready to go on in the long run.
If you feel somewhat dispirited, chances are that you’ve lost the inner fire. Getting it rekindled isn’t always an easy task but many will give up without even trying. So, what is motivation all about? Very often, it hides in the little things.
1. Rewarding Success
Whether you’ve managed to accomplish something or you have a team that you want to inspire, signs of recognition are always a great way to keep the spirits high.
Let’s say you’ve just managed to finish a book that you’ve been working on for a long time. Give yourself a weekend off. Celebrate. Travel. The accomplishment deserves to be recognized in the best possible way.
Here’s a simple and powerful story about the importance of rewards. It comes from Walt Disney. Disney was interested in making more money from the theme parks and he gave a team of seven employees the task.
The team first decided to open the park on the days during which it wasn’t working. These days were dedicated to discounted admission for corporate team members. The move was a massive success. On Christmas day that year, the seven employees saw Mickey Mouse standing at their doorstep. Mickey gave each an envelope featuring 100 shares of Disney stock, 25 $1,000 bills, and a handwritten thank you note from Walt Disney.
Needless to say, all seven team members went back to the office on that Christmas afternoon.
The next idea was a Grad Nite held in the park on a regular basis. This idea was another massive success. Once again, the seven team members got a visit from Mickey Mouse. This time, their envelope contained money, a car key, and a handwritten thank you note from Walt Disney. The car key was for a brand new Ferrari.
While your rewards could be a bit more modest, surprises and celebrations always pay off. They make you feel accomplished and they add fuel to the creative fire.
2. Treat Yourself Well
Very often, motivation doesn’t come from work-related activities or awards based on accomplishment. It’s linked to a personal philosophy of treating yourself well.
Form positive memories. Eat the right foods, exercise your body, and enjoy the simple pleasures that life throws your way. In essence, you should be living with intention and you should be purposeful in everything that you do. Otherwise, you’re simply existing instead of living to the fullest.
This strategy is incredibly important for artistic individuals. Whether you’re responsible for writing essays or creating modernistic sculptures, taking good care of your body and your mind will pay off in brighter ideas and a much more enthusiastic approach towards the things that you do.
Neglecting yourself is common when you have a deadline, when you feel pressured, or you’re worried about the future if you don’t manage to accomplish something. These are also the instances in which you notice the most profound lack of motivation. Even if you’re pressed for time, you should still dedicate 15 minutes per day to yourself (drink a cup of exquisite coffee, have a short walk in the park, meditate, or do something else that makes you happy). The less you neglect yourself and your needs, the more capable you’ll become of major accomplishments.
3. Base the Things that You do on Your Values
Everything that you do should connect to your values in one way or another. If you have to deal with something that is 100 percent against everything that you believe in, chances are that you will not be capable of going on for much longer.
Learning, creating, inspiring others, creating things that are new and original—these are all values that have given motivation to some of the world’s brightest minds. Sometimes, to accomplish these goals, you will have to deal with mundane tasks. Still, you know what the greater purpose is. As a result, you will power through such unpleasant episodes without feeling dragged down.
Figure out why you’re doing something, how it’s helping, for your betterment, and what the grand purpose of the entire endeavor is. If you can’t answer these questions, chances are that you will lose the motivation sooner or later.
Eventually, you may find out that your values are changing and that’s a good thing. As you grow older and you acquire more knowledge, chances are that you will find the meaning in things that weren’t important to you before. Keep an open mind and welcome the opportunities. Sooner or later, you will have a good idea whether the specific thing is worth fighting for.
4. Break Big Goals Down into Milestones
This final suggestion is yet another foolproof way to keep the motivation high, even when you are overwhelmed. It’s been effective since the dawn of time (for example, massive task of hunting a mammoth had to be broken down into smaller stages of tracking, preparing the trap, planning the route to it, giving groups of hunters different tasks, etc., to have any chance of success). And it’s still highly applicable in our digital age.
People tend to give up whenever they face huge challenges. A massive project that doesn’t seem to end will wear a person down and lead to the loss of motivation sooner or later.
Trying to accomplish something massive in one go is difficult. You will lose the momentum sooner or later.
Instead, break the huge task down into small, manageable chunks. Celebrate after the completion of each milestone and give yourself a bit of time out. This start and stop process makes it easier to go through the entire thing. You will feel motivated each time you accomplish something and you will be eager to move on to the next phase.
It doesn’t really matter whether you have to deal with a small task or a large challenge. The approach to keeping the motivation is always the same. Reward your successes and believe in yourself. Find an inner core value that will justify all of the hard work. Take good care of yourself and find a little bit of pleasure in every single task. If you’re capable of accomplishing these changes, you will be unstoppable.
Jack White is a star writer with a promising career ahead. He has spent 5 years working to be a professional writer in Essays.ScholarAdvisor. He has had a varied career, and it allows him to see the world from outside the box so that he may come up with real ideas to real problems.