Drive, ambition, and motivation all go hand in hand when working towards your goals. Where there is ambition, there is drive and motivation, and where there is motivation, there is drive and ambition. But saying you want to do something and doing it are completely different things. It’s easy to state a goal, but staying motivated to see it through is the hardest part. So here are a few ways to get motivated.

Ways to Get Motivated

First Things First

What even is motivation? It’s a word so easily thrown around that, at times, it loses its meaning. Motivation is the drive to see your ambition and goals through to the end. Our expectations for our goals and ambitions influence our motivation. We are more highly motivated when we think we have more to gain from our goals. 

But why should we care about motivation? Why is it important? Motivation is, at its core, a catalyst for change and growth. Breaking old bad habits is extremely difficult, but if you can muster up the motivation to change and practice enough self-discipline to not slip up, then you can overcome any obstacles that are in the way.

Setting Goals

Motivation is key to setting goals. But you should keep a few things in mind when setting goals. First, are you setting realistic and trackable goals? Are your goals in a growth mindset, or are they only about the end? It’s so easy to throw out random goals that seem attainable but are too vague for you to track, which leads to a lack of motivation. A vague goal sounds like “I will get a 4.0 this semester.” You want a 4.0? Great, but what steps are you taking to ensure your goa? You are better off stating, “I will set aside X amount of hours weekly to study per class.” This goal sets you up for success while giving you something accountable to hold on to throughout your semester. The more you study, the better prepared you’ll be for class, tests, and quizzes. 

Setting unattainable or vague goals leads to a lack of motivation. You might start strong, but the fire will burn out soon rather than later. It’s why so many people start their New Years’ resolutions strongly and, in two months, completely forget about them. Instead, make small changes that cascade into bigger changes. For example, maybe start with breakfast instead of changing your eating habits at once. Then, start the day with a healthier meal for a few weeks until it has become a habit, and build from there. Goals are about the result and accomplishment, but the journey and personal growth along the way are just as important. 

Accountability, Tracking, and Motivation

I don’t know about you, but I lose motivation fast. Maybe it’s the lack of instant gratification for most long-term goals that I set for myself. But accountability and tracking your progress towards your goal are big tools that help invigorate motivation. When you lose steam, having a friend push you along and remind you of your goal is sometimes the kick in the butt some of us need. Accountability leads to success. 

Tracking your progress is one of the best ways to stay motivated. I view progress tracking as leveling up in a video game. I gamify as much as possible in my life because it hits the brain the same way a Kraber shot in Apex does or makes a basketball shot where the net barely even moves. Seeing your progress and tracking your journey works as a form of self-accountability. You can see the two steps forwards and one step back that sometimes happen when your motivation and drive are lacking.

Motivation and Discipline

Wanting something and following through are different things. If I want to lose weight or eat cleaner, but I lack some sort of self-discipline, nothing will stop me from falling back on bad habits. Usually, the first few weeks of working towards a goal are easy. You are fired up and filled with motivation, but it takes some discipline to stick to it when it starts to wane. It takes about three months to develop a new habit, but once you start seeing your hard work pay off, the motivation creeps back up. Stick with your goals, and I promise you won’t regret them.         

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