Motivation From Knowing What To Do
I’ve said before that the best motivation for doing something is a conscious knowledge that it is in our best interests. That’s a sensible, positive source of motivation, as opposed to negative ones like fear.
How do we get that knowledge. It’s one thing to know that if I go for a walk every morning it’s good for me and is consistent with my goal of being healthy, but what if I don’t know exactly what to do for the best in some situations?
What if there are days when you really don’t feel like there is something definite you can do right now that is the best thing to do? What do you do when you’ve got that blockage thing going on? You want to do something constructive, important, useful, practical and which you feel confident in. But none of your options seem to fit in with those ideas.
There is always the routine, the mundane, the necessary, the essential to fall back on. And that is certainly what I recommend as a way to keep moving forward, not do any damage, keep it all together whilst waiting for the immediate problem to dissolve.
But there are times when subtle things get on top of us, we’re blocked, and we really feel we are ready to do something, if only we knew what it was. We have a build up of energy. It can be a confusing feeling, because sometimes it can feel like a lack of motivation, feeling lazy, but it can be the opposite of that – a build up of energy that has not found a big enough space to go – loading the washing machine again isn’t going to do it for us. We need to create something or change something, make some impact we can see.
Just making impact of course is not always a good idea, and can be destructive. That’s why we’re feeling stuck – we know we have not yet found the right place to direct this energy.
If we do find it though, the thing, the right thing, the thing that we need to do, motivation can magically appear, and lots of it. And this is a wonderful thing.
Being sure of and confident with what we are doing makes it a breeze. When we are engaged in an activity knowing it is the right thing to be doing, we are relaxed, it comes easily, it feels like very little effort is involved. We are then in a good position to get plenty done, be creative, be intuitive about how we get the best results.
I’ve talked about this before as it relates to decision making, but there can sometimes be a difficult decision to make, lying beneath the surface. Something we know is holding us up, but we have not yet been able to identify it.
In our search for the mysterious thing that seems to be in the way of us finding “the right thing” to get on with doing, we may look for some scapegoats along the way, and let our emotions get away with us. It’s good to be on the lookout for this phenomenon so we can exercise caution and control where needed.
Recognizing that we are short on ideas for direction, and having identified things along the way that are not the problem, it can be a good idea to set aside time just to think about what we are doing, how we are spending our time, and where we are going. The starting place for these sessions, and there may need to be quite a few of them, is with re-stating our goals. Our one, main goal, the first priority goal, is the first place to look. How have our recent activities contributed to and taken steps towards achieving this goal?
If it all looks a bit fuzzy, we need to get more specific. We need to map out our steps along the way to this goal. Our milestones. Achievements along the way. The end result picture when we get there, and how that will feel.
The more specific the goal, the more specific the plan, and steps towards it, and more detail and feeling we are able to attach to the outcome, the easier it is to attach the right feelings to the actions we need to take right now, and that’s where we will get our motivation.
Having just written this, it occurs to me that these are some of the ideas conveyed in Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich. I think (without looking it up) that he also described being certain, feeling absolute certainty. Was it about the goal itself or the actions taken towards it? I always found that book hard to read and take in, but perhaps a bit of it has just gelled with me, because I feel I can see it for myself.
And seeing it for yourself is the key to getting the right motivation for getting on with what you need to do. You need to be clear, really believe in it, and know what you need to do.
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