Motivation is what leads us to act to achieve a goal whether it is something as simple as preparing a sandwich because you are hungry or as complex as earning a degree at a university.
Motivation involves a series of physical, emotional, cognitive and social processes that push us to move and act in a certain way. It is what explains why people do something, why they act in one way rather than another or why they do now instead of leaving it for later.
People get up to do something when they have a reason that is important enough to overcome the obstacles. Therefore, be clear about your reasons for acting as it is a very important aspect of motivation.
The role of emotions in motivation
Emotions play a key role in motivation because they can function both as diminishing or increasing it. For example, you may have very good reasons to learn to drive but if you have fear, it may be more intense than your motives to learn and stop you from even trying.
In this case, to increase the motivation, it would be necessary to first reduce fear or other negative emotions and increase positive emotions. How you can do it? Firstly, try to be optimistic and generate positive emotions. To do this, do not forget the important role of your thinking in generating emotions. If you think that everything goes wrong in the end, you do not think it is worthwhile endeavor and surely do not make it. You are not motivating at all but quite the opposite. Therefore, try to have a realistic and optimistic thinking and do not focus only on the bad or the worst that can happen.
To increase optimism and positive emotions, do the following things;
- Keep in mind the positive results you can achieve if you make an effort for something.
- Evaluate your progress and be aware of the small steps you are taking and congratulate yourself on how you are solving problems that arise or your way around the obstacles.
- Keep in mind what you are learning while acting to achieve your goal, because that is also important and valuable in itself.
- Try to enjoy every step you take towards your goal.
Progress is one of the things that motivate in reaching a goal. On the contrary, when something happens that makes you step back, it can be very demotivating, so you must prepare to deal with such situations. You can do it by using your thinking in a constructive way. For example, you may think, ‘Okay, I have gone back, but this has happened because I was following the wrong path, I now take another path and will do better; it is preferable to rectify on time.’
Reading motivational quotes and watching motivational pictures are also good ways to improve your level of motivation.