As you know, life is always full of both high and low moments. Sometimes you feel quite charged from within and at some other times completely dull and dumb, without any drive or passion to go about your usual course of things. More crucial is the fact that we are seldom able to fathom the reasons of these extreme states of our mind. In such situations, it becomes very important to keep yourself motivated. Now, there are many ways to keep yourself motivated. Intended rewards work for some while fear of failure keeps some others motivated. Winning the heart of the one you love may work as a motivation for some of you while desire to see your family happy may keep motivated others among you. There could be umpteen reasons for motivation. But all these are only temporary. These might be there today and may suddenly disappear tomorrow. That is why self-motivation is considered to be the best motivation.
Self-motivation, or the ability to motivate oneself, is the force that continually pushes one forward. It is your inner drive to achieve, produce, develop and keep moving forward. It helps you widen your perspective, see things differently and push yourself to meet your goals more efficiently. Self-motivation is the reason in itself for why you do what you do. It is defined as “the initiative to undertake or continue a task without prodding or supervision.” Self or personal motivation is a crucial driving factor in any of your journeys, be it preparation of a competitive exam or fulfilling professional duties. Once you are self-motivated, having learnt how to keep yourself self-motivated, nothing can stand between you and your coveted success. Mr. Toba Beta, Indonesian poet and writer, better known for his work “Master of Stupidity” puts it beautifully when he says: “Do not depend on good motivators! Find your words of self-motivation!”
Now, let’s look at the importance of self-motivation for personal growth. Self-motivation is important because it does not let you depend on others and drives you to tap your strengths in order to meet your goals. It also helps you to ensure that you work on your weaknesses and do not let them hinder your plans. Knowing yourself is the first ingredient to keep yourself motivated, particularly when you feel low.
Identifying your strengths, aspirations and work-styles will help you understand the kind of person you are. It is also equally important to know and activate your internal motivators. These include your thoughts, passion and desire to do something. Learn to use them in your favour. Focus on your innermost thoughts about how would you like to see yourself after 10 or 20 years. Ignite your passion in your imagination, be it playing football or serving the downtrodden or taking your nation to greater heights. Concentrate on your deep desires that you have always been nurturing in the depths of your heart. These will work as internal motivators and help you persevere and deal with testing situations on a daily basis.
Here are some practices that can help you to keep yourself self-motivated. First, adopt a positive belief system. Try to inculcate positive habits and embrace positive thoughts to block out any negativity. Adopting a positive belief system can help you during difficult times. Second, a great source of personal motivation is a vision board. Create a vision board for yourself and add pictures of things you wish to buy, your favourite bands or artistes you want to meet, your dream travel destination and one thing you want to achieve during the next year. That will serve as a constant reminder to get moving towards your goals. Third, never ignore therapeutic power of nature. Now, more than ever, we understand the importance of connecting with our natural environment. Go to your neighbourhood park and enjoy a leisurely walk outdoors. It will help you organise your thoughts and think clearly. Fourth, music can really help lift your soul. Whenever you are in a situation where you do not know what to do, music can be the escape you need to clear your head and come up with an action plan. Last but not least, focus your attention on the most important task.
Prioritising your task has a great power of motivating yourself. The Eisenhower Principle is a good way to categorise your to-do list. Former US President Dwight D. Eisenhower devised the ‘Urgent-Important Matrix’ to categorise tasks as ‘urgent’, ‘not urgent’, ‘important’ and ‘not important’. This is a useful tool to prioritise tasks and work on the ones that require immediate attention.
So, buckle up and get moving. Part of personal motivation is to push yourself to face every hurdle that comes along.
With these words, I wish all the best for all of your current and future endeavours.