In January we set loads of goals. They all seemed fresh and exciting. And we were full of promises to ourselves about how this year we would keep them. By May the hard work to succeed in them is less appealing, the excuses we make in our heads have got a little bit louder and our motivation has often started to wane.
Here at The Practice at 322 we have three tactics to help you reignite your motivation; keeping your goals front of mind, creating a mantra and (most importantly) stopping comparing yourself to others. Try these and keep your January goals sticking around till you achieve them.
- Look back at your goals. If you set the right goals back in January then you should still be excited enough to work towards them. A reminder can be helpful though so telling someone about your goal can be good – especially if they are someone who is likely to regularly ask you how you are getting on. It is also good to break down your goals into much smaller blocks, so you continually have things you can achieve. Then you get a small buzz each time you tick something off.
- Create a mantra. Talking to ourselves is a great sport psychology technique, as long as we are talking positively and helpfully. Think of your inner voice as a coach or personal trainer. What would they say to you? They would be encouraging and enthusiastic. They would tell you things to boost your motivation. Channel that vibe and create a phase which you can repeat to yourself when you find motivation dropping. The phrase I use at the moment when I take part in running races is: Make Hattie proud. Hattie is my two year old daughter and I really want her to see that to be successful we need to see things through to the end, even if they feel really tough at the time. Any time I want to stop my mantra kicks in and I’d be too ashamed not to finish.
- Something that tends to make us very self-critical and feel like we are failing is comparing ourselves to others. If we have already lost some motivation and are feeling ‘off track’ then comparing ourselves can be really damaging. Especially as we are comparing our true ‘warts and all’ self to someone else’s instragramed up, very glossy version that they have filtered for you to see. This is bound to make us feel low and self-critical. Natalie, the Practice at 322 Principal Psychologist has written about this in lots of depth and is well worth a read. Rather than compare with others, a nice way to stay positive if losing motivation is to compare ourselves with where we were previously. Perhaps keep a diary so you can look back at how far you have come. Or get yourself a little jar and every time you achieve something new that you proud of write it down and add it to the jar. Whenever you start to compare yourself to others look in the jar and it will remind yourself that you are doing just fine.
If you are feeling you are lacking in motivation and have a sporting challenge coming up get in touch with us and we can help you get back on track.