Motivational Blast from the Past

I was re-organizing my study and came across some old notebooks. One of them had some notes from when I first started teaching, way back in 2010. Apparently at the beginning of the school year I’d gone to a motivational seminar put on by my college employer. Reading through the notes, they are just as applicable today as they were over a decade ago. I thought I would share some of these thoughts from the past.

What’s your mission statement? What’s really important to you? What are you pursuing in life? The next job? The next relationship? The next time you get to snuggle under the covers? Does it fit into your life plans? What about the overall big picture? How does your mission statement drive you forward past the moment and propel you to better opportunities?

Plan a route and break it down into manageable tasks. I do this almost every day. I set out my small whiteboard and make a list of the things I would like to get done before workday ends. It can be overwhelming to think about all the tasks I have to accomplish by the end of the week, so breaking it down day by day, task by task, makes everything more manageable and gets me much more motivated to push through. I love crossing things off my do-to list.

Develop a reliable plan. If you’re trying to accomplish something it’s not the time to set sail with half-hearted attempts. Don’t rely on a time you know there will be a distraction, or you know there will be a barrier. Set yourself up for success from the get-go.

Speaking of that, anticipate barriers or distractions. Think ahead for what’s coming and try to plan around as best possible. A lot of headaches can be avoided with some preemptive thoughts.

Manage your baggage – what do you spend your time and money on? Follow these two things and you’ll get to the crux of what most people focus on.

Be proactive rather than reactive – what controls you? What are some things that you let get to you? Can you walk away from people that don’t have your best interests in mind?

How do you see yourself? Does that need to change? Low self-esteem can be a real struggle, especially if you don’t let yourself succeed. Give yourself credit for what you’ve done and attempt to do. Create positive associations that help support a positive perspective to reach your goals. Accomplishing tasks should feel good.

Set the right pace. Everyone moves at a different speed. Some seem to zoom ahead while others take a little more time. Find what works for you, but do something every day that helps with progress. New habits take time to build, and old habits take time to fill with something else.

You have to replenish motivation every day. You can create an environment that is empowering, use visualization techniques, identify and get rid of distractions, and/or even have a motivational board, drawer, or whatever keeps you motivated. For me, I have covered my office walls with art that makes me happy to look at. In turn they motivate me to keep working when I take short mental breaks. Motivation doesn’t grow on trees; you have to refill your cup a lot to keep it going.

So there you have it. Tips from the past for today’s present. I wonder if someone will find this blog post in the future and have an “aha!” moment. You never know what awaits when you clean out your house.

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