Guess what, waiting for motivation to appear is not a winning formula! Most of the time, taking some action towards your goal or dream, even if that action is very small, is going to increase your motivation. If you wait for motivation to appear, your goal might just never become reality! And here is why:
Motivation is all about movement and motives
Motivation has a number of roots. The main one being the latin word movere which means to move or motus which means motion. Motivation is also linked to the words motive (reason or intention) and emotion (feeling).
This means, motivation is not something that happens to us when we are stagnant, it happens when we move and take action; motivation is also less likely to be forthcoming when we are not clear as to our reasons why we want to do something. We feel demotivated when our reasons for our goals conflict with our values or core beliefs – our emotions then let us know there is a problem.
Feeling a lack of motivation is always a sign that something is not quite right. So, if you do not feel motivation to take the next step towards your goal ask yourself the following questions to identify the cause(s) and key actions you can take now to increase your motivation to move forward.
What are my excuses for not taking the next step?
Don’t feel like it? Not the right the time? Do not know how? Any of these could be the answer. Whatever your answers are, take some time to examine what you feel when you reflect into this answer. What do you see or hear internally? What is behind that excuse? Most women discover that is fear of some sort. The fear of being laughed at, fear of failure, fear or succeeding even. Whatever it is, acknowledging it and becoming aware of the emotion behind your lack of motivation often is what helps us to move forward.
What are my reasons (motives) for wanting to achieve this goal?
If your dreams and goals are things that you ‘should’, ‘ought to’ or ‘must’ be doing and they are more other people’s goals than yours, then a lack of motivation indicates that there is a values conflict and it might be worth re-examining the goal or dream. If you discover that there are loads of positive reasons for achieving this goals, make sure you write them down and have them in a place that you look at every day.
And if you discover that your reasons are ‘negative’, i.e. reasons that contain words like avoid, prevent, reduce, away from, don’t want, etc., then there maybe limiting beliefs about yourself and your ability to achieve your goal that hold you back. You might find it useful to write down what comes into your head without judging, and once you can’t think of anything else, go back and consider what beliefs about yourself are behind your ‘negative reasons’.
What if anything would make me feel motivated to take the next step given what I now know about the root of ‘lack of motivation’?
I am assuming you know your next step. If you don’t then, that might at the root of your lack of motivation. Consider asking one of your ‘success team’ for help or taking some time out to have a creative brainstorming session on what the options for next steps could be.
If you know your next step, I invite you put a number (e.g. between 1 and 10) or a value (lowest to highest) on the level of your current motivation to take the next step. Then ask yourself, what would need to happen for you to be slight more motivated i.e. if you used numbers and had a current motivation level of 5, what would get you to a 6, for example, and when you have established that, think about what would then get you to a 7 and so on.
I invite you to try and make this exercise as fun as possible. So be as creative and playful as you can!