The Quick Report

Struggling with Motivation? Try Activation

Motivation is the drive we need to guide our interest toward or away from something. But getting started is the hard part when it comes to achieving our goals. For that we need activation – here’s how to get it.


Where Motivation Alone Falls Short

Motivation is the drive we need to do — or stop doing — something. It is driven by strong emotions, both positive and negative. These emotions drive thought, turn into motivations, and then finally become plans. 

Just because you achieve motivation doesn’t mean you’re done. Getting started is the hard part, but dealing with the boring and uncomfortable tasks that come next can be difficult. Desire is enough to motivate us to do some things. But motivation alone does not always propel us forward toward the achievement of out goals.

For example, take someone with the desire to lose weight. They may be motivated enough to sign up for membership at a gym. But that motivation isn’t enough to reach the fulfillment of their weight loss goal. They may strongly want to lose weight, so the motivation is there. Yet, they can’t show up at the gym. So what’s missing?

Read More: 10 Personal Victories That Lead to Success

Activation: The Act of Turning Motivation into Action

The key to forward momentum is activation. Once we know the desire that is propelling our motivation, we have to take a look at what might be stopping our activation.

Once you’ve identified that barrier, one of the following solutions may help you overcome it and turn your motivation into action.

Here are some tips to help:


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1. Break up Difficult Tasks into Smaller Parts

A difficult task can seem overwhelming due to how much is involved. The trick is to break up the job into smaller parts.

For example, people trying to overcome clutter are taught to not think about trying to clean the whole room. Start with a single shelf. Then move on to the next shelf, and so on.

The same logic can be applied to any difficult task we have to face. Start with the smallest part you can work on first, then move on to the next.

2. Break up a Larger Goal into Smaller Goals

Sometimes the goal itself is the problem. You might be trying to accomplish too much at once or setting the bar too high. Similar to the previous example, breaking up larger goals into smaller ones could be the key.

In many instances, the achievement of a particular goal is a series of steps. Therefore, rather than focus on the end goal, focus on each step of the way. Don’t think about anything else. Focus on the first step and achieve that. Then move to the next step. Consider keeping a progress list you can check off as you move through each step toward the achievement of your overall goal.

3. Find a Way to Excite Yourself

It can be difficult to get motivated toward something boring. The trick is to find a way to make it more exciting. Sometimes it can be as simple as listening to some music you like or an audiobook to distract your mind from a boring task as you perform it.

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4. Offer Yourself a Reward

Another trick is to reward yourself with something for completing a task. There is no reason to feel guilty for a little splurge if it helps you achieve a goal – you’ve earned it. The reward could be an ice cream, a movie, a book, or a new piece of clothing – the possibilities are endless.