And I’ve committed to a 31 day blogging challenge (#31dbc–Lesa Townsend). For lots of personal reasons, and even more professional ones, I really want to accomplish this goal. But after an exhaustive weekend, and an almost empty pot of coffee, what could possibly keep any of us motivated?
Let’s first understand motivation.
Motivation is defined as “the reason(s) one has for behaving and acting a certain way.” We say we want something, I want to complete this blogging challenge, so we replay all the reasons we might have and we respond in a manner that supports the end result. It’s just that simple. Or is it?
Motivation is great. It propels our moving forward, accomplishing a goal, driving our purpose. When we are motivated, we see success. But what happens when we are not motivated, do we still see the same success? Not always.
In order to keep motivation successful, we have to keep it mindful.
What exactly does that mean?
I want to complete this blogging challenge. I write and post a blog each day. And I have lots of good reasons to do it. My motivation is strong. I see the results. I imagine the future success–both personal and professional growth. But today, I’m tired. I would love to simply go back to bed.
In this exact moment: motivation.
So, I ask myself: What is my motivation? Has it changed? Am I seeing the results I want? Am I distracted or discouraged about it and need to work through those challenges? Does this goal still align with my values?
If all of these answers are yes, (which of course, as you’re reading, and I’m writing) then I have an obligation to myself, my future, and my integrity, to complete the tasks at hand. If the answers were a mix of yes and no, then I would need to reevaluate my motivation, my outlook and my purpose so that it aligns with the values that I hold dear.
If we are not mindful to keeping our motivation in line with our values, than what are we motivating ourselves to do? Motivation can be incredibly self-defeating when we create the dynamic in which we “motivate” only to prove we are unable to complete a task. So, asking ourselves, “Is this really what I want, not just for this moment, but for the next, and the next and the next?” is inherent to staying motivated. If the answer is no, because it’s simply not worth the work or the value around the goal has changed, honor the changes and modify accordingly.
While I know we are all capable of finding our motivation on this Monday morning, I really hope that it can also be mindful. “What is my true motivation today?” Embrace it, consciously.