Stay Motivated

Stay Motivated

The voice on the other end of the phone line starts in with his sales pitch.  He tries his best to be excited and to get me excited by saying, “What would you like to do?   Wouldn’t you like to travel and see the world?”   NO!  I have to laugh – he has no clue.

Travelling doesn’t motivate me at all!  My wife and our three children spent decades traveling the United States and Canada performing in a different city every night in churches, auditoriums and convention halls.  Travel?  I don’t think so.  While taking an extended trip would be considered a luxury to most people, I have been there and done that and that is NOT something that motivates me.  We enjoy staying home; that is a luxury for us.  Sorry, sir, you probably should call someone else with that pitch.

What motivates you?  Is it travel, cars, a new home or even a second home?  It’s not always easy to stay motivated; you MUST understand why you are spending all this time and energy.  You have to remind yourself frequently of the thing that motivates you.  When the car won’t run, and the mower won’t mow, when the kids need your help and you don’t have time to work on YOUR project, you must see the big picture!

When I was buying a new house, a picture of that house was the wallpaper on my computer.  Then, once the house was bought, a picture of the truck that I was rebuilding became my wallpaper.  Some experts will tell you to tape your goal on your mirror, put it on the refrigerator or hang it someplace else where you will see it constantly.  Write yourself a big check and then frame it and hang it in a conspicuous place!  You can hear and read a lot of different inspirational ideas.

There IS something that will work for YOU; make it happen.  Find out what motivates you and then dangle it in front of yourself often.  Visualize it.  Smell it, taste it, see it, hear it, feel it until it becomes a part of you.

I know you have heard this before, but it is extremely important that you write it all down and then share it with someone close to you.  When you realize that you have become distracted, write it down again!  Don’t let the dream fade.

If you try to build a car or a house or any other large project all at once, you will be overwhelmed and become discouraged.  You MUST break the project down into smaller chunks.  We all have too much to do in any given day, so set aside a certain amount of time to work on your project.  You can’t do it all at once, but you CAN do a little each day.  Keep doing ‘doable’ steps and soon they will start to add up and you will begin to see progress.  Breaking it up keeps you feeling like you are getting somewhere and helps keep you focused on the project.

Failure is not fatal, but giving up is.  Thomas Edison said, “I have not failed.  I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”   You WILL fail to accomplish everything you set out to do, but don’t ever quit.  Get up and try again.  And again.  And again!

Surround yourself with positive people.  Share your goals with friends and family in whom you have confidence.  You probably can’t complete your project by yourself, so get some support.  When you share your vision with others, it reinforces that vision in your own mind.  Do what you are good at doing, and get some help with the things that you aren’t so good at doing, at least until you become better at those tasks.

There will be a time when discouragement sets in.  I will happen.  Know that up front and have a plan in place to combat your fatigue.  Think of others who have faced unsurmountable odds and overcame them.  You can do it.  The battle takes place between your own two ears.  If you think you can, or if you think you can’t, you are right!  One of Winston Churchill’s most famous speeches consisted of this line:  “Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, give up.”

So, every day check your computer wallpaper, or the mirror, or the framed check, or whatever keeps you ticking.  Your strength has to come from within.  I’ll repeat myself by asking, “What motivates you?”  Answer that question, and keep that answer in front of you and you will be much more likely to stay motivated and see the big picture until it becomes a reality!

Find out what motivates you and take advantage of it;  make a commitment to yourself so that you can keep going when you are not excited about anything at all.  You can do it!

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