Thursday, April 12, 2012

“I Need a Push” -- Creative Ways to Keep Yourself Motivated

By Anne Kelly, President of Junonia   Active Style, Everyday, Everywhere in sizes 14-6X

My friend Katy is nothing like me.  When she wants to get something done, she puts a plan on paper and simply follows it!  Whether it is a diet, or a plan to walk the 3 day Komen Breast Cancer walk, she just does it.  For her the motivation is in the decision.  She doesn’t see it as a virtue, it’s just the way she is.
I’m SO not that disciplined.  I resist, I whine, I find ways to NOT do what I say I want to do.   But I suspect Katy is rare, and most of us need an occasional boost or push.  So I asked several friends for their top tips for staying motivated and on task. 

If you find yourself getting off plan, give one of these a try!
  • I usually take a little break and move my brain to something totally unrelated - like solving a sudoku or taking a short walk. It helps me refresh my perspective and restart my engine.   Nancy   
  • Hmmmm....sometimes for me it's just that the guilt becomes so intense, I can't take it anymore...but I suspect that is NOT what you are looking for...  I'll keep thinking...  Jane
  • I tell myself I only need to put in the next 15 minutes and I can stop.  Once you get started, of course you may do much more.  Vicki
  •  I write down the steps. Talk to x, sign up for y, buy z supplies, schedule one hour this weekend to meet with a…  Break down the tasks and just do the first one.   I get real relief if I’m moving ahead at all. Vicki
  • I like the reward system.  If I get something done I give myself a reward. Mary
  • I also use distraction, but I set a limit on how long I “distract” myself. Mary
  • I find I have to switch gears when I am feeling uninspired and tired.  So I do something different for a short limited time, like taking a walk or washing the dishes.  That usually refreshes my mind.  Kay
  • If I am still feeling blah, I promise myself to work for a very short time, like 45 minutes or an hour.  Once I start the task, it usually lasts longer than 45 minutes. That is how I got my holiday cards out.  Kay  
  • I forced myself to sleep last night and get back on schedule.  So, my recommendation is… GET SOME SLEEP!
  • I realized I work too much.  To counterbalance the workaholic addiction my boyfriend and I do not work on Sundays.  Not at all. Not one smidge. We eat breakfast in jammies, talk, make love and take a mini mental vacation.  I then feel ready to jump into the week.  Susan
  • I find that meeting two or three creative friends for coffee-- early in the morning and talking-- always revs my engine. Plus we always come away saying "Why don't we do that more often". Susan
  • When I feel unmotivated,  it is often because I am using only part of my brain, usually only the left rational side.  Instead of a push--- I pull back and escape completely..see a movie, play some music, read a book, workout for at least a few hours and sometimes even longer. I come back to the task with a more endorphin-filled attitude.  Jeanne
  • I find organizing something helps me get back on track; a closet, my finances, the kitchen.  It de-clutters my mind as well as my house.  Susan

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