Why does one person stay on task even as children, a TV program and a sunny day beckon, while another person abandons a daily plan without hesitation? Is it ironclad willpower or a special gene that blocks out distractions? To the contrary, someone who consistently gets things done has conditioned themselves to achieve. Anyone can do it. Incorporate key self motivation tips into your work day and stay on course…even when your best intentions are being challenged.
Write Down Your Goals
What do you hope to achieve today, next year, in ten years? Take time to make short-term and long-term goals that form the foundation of your daily action plan. If you are not sure how to get started, download the SMART Career Goals Worksheet from the Bright Hub Media Gallery. This tool guides the creation of goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound (i.e., SMART) and thus more likely to be achieved.
Setting goals inspires action. But, taking the process was step further will make goals even more powerful. For each one write down the pleasure you will feel from achieving the goal and the pain associated with not achieving the goal. Carefully contemplate your statements and make them so detailed that you feel emotion when you read them. According to Anthony Robbins, author of numerous books on personal power, pain and pleasure are the most powerful motivators of action.
Establish a Ritual
Just as an athlete goes through a preparatory ritual before each performance, so should the home office worker before a work period begins. A ritual sets the stage for what comes next. For example, after you have a cup of coffee and ten minutes with the morning paper, sit down to work. You won’t question whether it’s time to get started. The routine will prompt you to do what comes next. A word of caution: Place a time limit on the routine and do not make it too elaborate or it may lead to procrastination instead. Also, use best practices for checking email and social media as part of a routine since it so easy to get sidetracked with these activities.
Check in with a Buddy
Health experts suggest that working out with a friend increases commitment to a goal. Similarly, establishing a connection with a person with similar aspirations for productivity can be helpful. When you tell someone else your goal, you are more likely to achieve it. Call or text a friend, post your intentions to an online board or at least let the members of your family know.
Use a Timer
In spite of your best intentions, it may be hard to stay on track some days. Try the Pomodoro TechniqueTM developed by Francisco Cirillo to improve work habits and combat procrastination. Set a timer for a 25 minute period followed by a five minute break. Repeat the interval, known as a “Pomodoro,” four times and then take a longer break. During the work period intensely focus on a designated task. Use your own timer or one of the smart phone applications or software programs that are available.
See more self motivation tips on Page 2.
Organize your desk and office space so it is free from distraction. Equally important, remove clutter from your mind. If you are worried about what’s for dinner and how to meet competing deadlines, then it is difficult to concentrate. Dump all of your commitments into your calendar and to-do list. Block out time to organize and plan each day. You are less likely to dwell on various obligations, if you know you have an opportunity to address them later. If you don’t have a good system for organizing your action items, then consider a system like Vitalist or Todoist. See more reviews of time-management software in the Tips and Reviews section of the Home Office and Project Management hubs.
Dress for Success
Are you fully dressed for a day at the office? Sweat suits don’t count and you don’t need to drag out a suit. However, you are more likely to stay motivated for business activities if you are showered, groomed and professionally dressed. As a bonus, you won’t have to run for cover when the doorbell rings and your neighbor needs to borrow a battery.
One of the benefits of working from home is the flexibility it affords. If you can, perform some work tasks in a different location. A different vantage point sparks creativity and may energize you. Take reading material out to a sunny porch. Relocate your laptop to the dining table on occasion.
Celebrate milestones. Wouldn’t you be motivated to consistently get things done if it meant a dream vacation was on the horizon? In addition, build little rewards into your day. Take a break to stretch, walk or call a friend after you have completed a work segment.
Keep an Inspiration File
Catch yourself when you are inspired and motivated. What preceded the feeling? Some people are motivated by a favorite quote, a special photograph or a poem. Others listen to a song and their mood immediately changes. Consider creating a collage that depicts goals you want to achieve. As you become aware of triggers, write them down in a journal or keep a file. Pull it out whenever you need a boost. Share your self motivation tips with others!
Follow Healthy Habits
A good night’s rest, daily exercise and eating right, including a restorative break for lunch each day, contribute to a strong work ethic. That’s right! If one of these areas are lacking, then you will have trouble motivating yourself to consistent action. Take care of yourself and the other self motivation tips will be easier to follow.
Anthony Robbins: https://www.tonyrobbins.com/
Pomodoro TechniqueTM: https://www.pomodorotechnique.com/index.html
- Pomodoro Timer: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Pomodoro-timer.gif
- Porch: https://www.sxc.hu/photo/1085320
- Calendar: https://www.sxc.hu/photo/1150170