Self Motivation – 15 Proven Tips for Success

Self Motivation

Self motivation can be one of the most difficult skills to master in life. It’s so easy to get excited at the beginning of a new venture, only to lose motivation over time. I speak from experience having started many personal projects and then lost all motivation to complete them.  That’s why I want to share my favorite tips that help me maintain motivation for any project.

Self Motivation Tip #1 – A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

This old saying is very true, particularly when you are trying to stay motivated. Using specific and personal images can be a great way to keep us self motivated and inspired. Psychologists call this process ‘hetero-suggestion’. So, keep yourself inspired by placing personal and powerful images of the goal you want to achieve.

Look at them every day and imagine yourself having achieved the result that you are working towards. Also, add your own text and affirmations to favorite images to boost their impact. This can be a powerful source of  daily motivation and inspiration as it directly feeds your subconscious mind. Just like a automobile GPS navigation system , this gives your subconscious a clear idea of where you want to end up.

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Self Motivation Tip #2 – Finding Inspiration

As well as images, find any other sources of inspiration that may help you stay on track. In our internet, it’s so easy to find inspirational images, videos and stories that boost our positive feelings and emotions. I personally find certain quotes highly inspirational. These are often just powerful sayings that resonate with our situation, or statements from people who have been able to offer words of wisdom from their own experience.

So, surround yourself with not only with images, but powerful quotes that you find inspiring and motivational. Take time to reflect on these for a few moments everyday, and notice how they lift your spirit. Any time you feel like quitting, use them to re-energize your own efforts.

One of my favorite ways to boost my motivation is to check out my collection of inspirational quotes on pinterest.

Also, if you have time, another great source of powerful inspiration are Tedx Talks on youtube.

Self Motivation Tip #3 – Break it Down Get Started – Micro Steps

Many people become demotivated purely because they take on a challenge that’s just seems too big and too far away.  The key on any long term goal is to break it down into simple achievable micro-steps. It’s much easier  to stay motivated about the small actions we take every day than just focusing on the end goal. So, find a way to break down any goal into micro steps and keep your excitement and achievement on track.

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Self Motivation Tip #4 – Put it in Writing -Journal

Keeping a journal or planner can be a great way of boosting your motivation. Keeping your journal with you allows you to write down flashes of inspiration and new creative ideas as they arise. Also, writing things down allows you to regularly review issues to see what’s working well and what might need a plan B. I also use my journal as my source of ‘hetero-suggestion’ for when I’m on the move. My journal is full of pictures, drawings, words and quotes that help to keep me inspired and motivated.

Self Motivation Tip #5 – Declare It

The more you share your goal and progress with friends and colleagues the more likely you will commit  to the result and to keeping yourself motivated. So, get an extra  boost of motivation and declare your goal to others today. Give them regular updates on progress. This can also be a great way of finding a buddy (tip #8) who may want to join you on your quest.

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Self Motivation Tip #6 – Commit to Regular Action

When you motivation level drops, it’s so easy to just stop. That’s why it’s important to use tip # 4 combined with regular action. No matter how small the action, force yourself into regular action that moves you towards the result you want. Even if you can’t achieve a milestone, take the opportunity every day to review your plan, complete some research, analyze your progress. So for every micro-step in your goal take action to move towards your result no matter how small.

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Self Motivation Tip #7 – Chart Your Progress

One great way to stay motivated is to track your progress regularly. Make sure this is an opportunity to be creative about how you stay on track to achieve your goal. Seeing that you are on track can give a great boost motivate further long term action. If you are not on track, it gives you a chance to review what you are doing and adapt your plan to get back on track. The key is not to use your progress chart to beat yourself up, as is likely to be demotivating.

Self Motivation Tip #8 – Buddy Up

Here is another old saying to consider… ‘ a problem shared is a problem halved’. One great way to keep yourself motivated and inspired is to work with a friend or colleague who is trying to achieve the same or similar goal. Each buddy can help to motivate their partner and also share what they have learned on their journey. Sharing of ideas can be a powerful way of avoiding challenges before they even arrive. So, don’t under-estimate the power of the buddy or partner to stay motivated.

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Self Motivation Tip #9 – Keep it Positive

I meet so many people that are so hard on themselves when they lose excitement for a goal they wan to achieve. The common thread for many of the previous tips is about keeping your mind positive. When we can stay positive about our achievement its so much easier to maintain our initial feelings of excitement about our goals. So, if you feel your motivation slipping find one of the go too ideas listed here to boost your positive feelings.

What ever you do, don’t fall into the trap of beating yourself up. A little self-compassion and awareness will allow you to get yourself back on track. Simply recognize your slipping motivation and dive straight into your favorite motivation tools to re-energize yourself.

Self Motivation Tip #10 – Affirm and Visualize Daily

When you combine these tips, it’s possible that you have created the perfect resource to motivate yourself using affirmation and visualization.  Take a few minutes everyday to affirm your progress. Review you powerful images and your progress chart to affirm the success of whatever you are trying to achieve. With visualization, it’s possible to create a very short , sharp  and powerful and highly motivating internal representation of your end goal. For more reading on affirmation and visualization you may want to check out the related posts at the end of this post.

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Self Motivation  Tip #11 – Find the Fun

One great way to stay motivated is to find ways to inject fun into activities. So, when you are planning your micro-actions for the day make sure you think about how to make it fun. This is especially true of task we need to complete that may be a little mundane. One simple method I use to add fun to keep me motivated is outlined in the next tip.

Self Motivation Tip #12 – Be Aware of Avoidance

We all tend to avoid some tasks that we know we should complete. This avoidance behavior is very common and is often called procrastination. The key is to notice when you are beginning to avoid tasks that must be completed. We are hard wired to do things we perceive as pleasurable and avoid things that make us uncomfortable.  So, be aware of your avoidance and use these tips to stay motivated about even the challenging tasks.

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Self Motivation Tip #13 – Little Rewards

Work out a list of small rewards that you can use to add fun to achievement so you can stay motivated. These can be as simple as extra short breaks to do something recreational.  My favorites are a five minute walk in the park,

Self Motivation Tip #14 – Over, Under or Around

I used to push myself so hard to achieve a specific plan. If I couldn’t complete a plan I felt like a complete failure. The key for overcoming this was learning to become flexible and adaptable. My breakthrough came when I first learned about process improvement and P.D.C.A, which stands for plan, do, check and act.  I would plan and do and then often fail. The key is to check what your doing and if needed, adapt your plan to overcome challenges.  Then act on these changes. This is a great way of going over, under or around any challenge you face in achieving any goal in life.

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Self Motivation Tip #15 – Manage De-motivation

When you review all these tips, you can see that self motivation is all about managing our mind and the thoughts and emotions they create.  Our minds are like powerful computers capable of guiding us to achieve great things. However, if you are not aware of impact of your thoughts and emotions, it’s easy to become demotivated.

Therefore, the key to self motivation is to become aware of  and manage your human urges which stem from our thoughts and emotions. When you observe thoughts and emotions that are demotivating, simply accept them and shift your focus onto your motivation practice. Don’t fight with negative thoughts and emotions, simply shift you thoughts to what you want to achieve.

What Next?

Now it’s over to you. Staying motivated is not always easy, but keep using these tools and you give yourself every chance of staying on track with you life goals. To stay inspired and learn more about motivation you may like to read these posts…

Visualization for Personal Success

MIndfulness for a Healthy Brain

Using Life Quotes to Inspire Change

17 Daily Affirmations for Self-Empowerment

14 Daily Affirmations for a Great New Year


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