Self Motivation techniques can mean the difference between a kickass day and a day wasted in front of the TV.
Sometimes we are all lazy. Sometimes we need help overcoming procrastination (READ: How to overcome laziness).
It’s natural to suffer the occasional drop in energy where you find it very difficult to find motivation.
A huge part of the success mindset is
- accepting that motivation peaks and troths
- doing something about it
Thankfully, when we have low motivation levels we can use use self motivation techniques like meditation.
If you find that you are lacking energy or lacking purpose, self motivation techniques can help you to get out of the doldrums and back on track.
So what are the best self motivation techniques? Here are the top 5.
The 5 Most Effective Best Self Motivation Techniques
1. Meditation For Motivation
In my huge guide to 100+ benefits of meditation I discuss the link between meditation and motivation.
Have you ever tried using meditation for motivation?
Meditation is one of the absolute best self motivation techniques. It works for a number of reasons.
For starters, meditation will help you to eliminate any negative thoughts and negative self beliefs that are holding you back.
When you close your eyes and meditate on your breath for just twenty minutes all your thoughts subside.
Try it now.
Simply close your eyes and take a few deep breaths while focusing on your breathing. You will find that any sort of negativity or stress begins to slip away.
Here’s the deal:
Often, having self motivation is not about giving yourself encouragement so much as it’s about removing negativity. Motivation is natural (well provided you have your dopamine under control). When you’re thinking positively you are already motivated.
We are all born with motivation.
We wouldn’t have blasted off into space or built towering skyscrapers if we didn’t have motivation. Sometimes you just need to get back to your natural state. And motivation-meditations are one of the best ways to do that.
When you meditate you give your mind an opportunity to reset to its natural state. And once you are at your natural state you will find that you already have motivation.
So, if you want to quickly build self motivation, begin by practicing meditation.
Use This Meditation For Motivation
For self motivation, we need self love and self compassion.When we have positive feelings about ourselves we naturally act in positive ways that improve our wellbeing.
This meditation for motivation heightens self compassion so we are motivated to do good for ourselves.
1. Sit quietly somewhere peaceful and relaxing.
2. Close your eyes. Take 10 deep breaths while focusing on breathing (mentally focus on the way your breath is moving around your body)
3. Think about yourself being happy. See yourself in your mind’s eye. See yourself smiling and feeling positive.
4. Ask why you are feeling so happy. How does your current goal make you happier (whether you’re losing weight, seeking a promotion, or any other goal, think about how that goal would contribute to your happiness and wellbeing).
5. List ten reasons you deserve this happiness.
6. Take 10 more mindful breaths
7. Think about the problems you are trying to solve (for instance, you’re losing weight because you have some health concerns)
8. List ten reasons why you deserve to have your problems solved.
9. List ten ways your current goal will help with your problems and concerns
10. Visualize yourself feeling the way you would feel once the problem has been solved
11. Take 10 final breaths
12. Express gratitude for this meditation
*The above meditation for motivation is based on a combination of the Buddhist techniques Karuna and Metta.
*Note: If your main motivation is to help other people, use the meditation above but replace all instances of yourself with the other person.
2. Yoga For Motivation
In “Yoga For Positive Energy” I wrote about using yoga for motivation.
Yoga is one of the best exercises you can do for both your body and mind.
After years of doing yoga, one of the main reasons I’m grateful for it is not because of my fitter body or toned muscles but because yoga motivates me and makes me feel positive.
There is a key link between your body language and your motivation.
For instance, if you stand tall with your chin up you will feel confident and intelligent. If you clench your fist you will feel anger and power. And this is just from very basic body language gestures.
Now imagine how much those yoga poses influence your emotions.
Your physical posture directly effects your mood.
Good posture will make you feel positive and motivated. And because yoga gives you excellent posture it too can help you to feel positive and motivated.
But it doesn’t end there.
As a physical exercise, yoga gets you moving and starts to release those endorphins, the feel good chemicals in your brain that fire you up to get things done.
So while you are on the yoga mat sweating and moving your body into all sorts of positions (or “asanas”) you are giving yourself positive body language and you are also releasing endorphins. And both of those things will help to boost your levels of motivation.
Top 10 Yoga Poses For motivation
When using yoga for motivation, focus on these asanas (poses). Hold these poses for longer than usual, as you would when doing Iyengar. This trains the mind to truly experience the energy of the pose.
1. Child’s pose
2. Upwards bow pose
3. Camel pose
4. Wheel pose
5. Crane pose
6. Mountain pose
7. Downward Dog
8. Warrior (I, II, III and reverse)
9. Tree pose
10. Bridge pose
3. Self Hypnosis
Your subconscious mind has a huge influence on your motivation. And you can control your subconscious by using self hypnosis.
Self hypnosis is similar to using a guided meditation for motivation. With both techniques you begin by quieting your mind and then you start to feed your mind positive thoughts that influence your future actions.
You can use either self hypnosis for motivation or traditional hypnosis and hypnotherapy. All three techniques are powerful ways to influence your mind for the better.
With a self hypnosis you generally start by quieting your mind all the way down so it is almost like you are sleeping (your brain will been in alpha state). You then begin to introduce positive thoughts and positive images, usually by visualizing. The idea is that these positive thoughts will influence your subconscious, which is the most powerful part of your brain.
Once your subconscious is working in the right direction you will find that you are naturally very motivated. It will feel like someone has put a firecracker in your pants as you work your butt off.
Self hypnosis should be taken with a grain of salt.
Research into the effects of self hypnosis is divided. While some believe that it is a powerful tool that can do you the world of good, others believe that it is potentially quite risky and can actually interfere with your chances of success.
So if you are interested in self hypnosis, be sure to research it thoroughly first. Unlike using meditation for motivation (which has been proven to work and to be healthy) self hypnosis research is less conclusive.
4. Compare Yourself To Yourself
Take a look at this list of exercises for self esteem.
Notice how number 2 on that list says “Don’t compare yourself to other people”?
When you compare yourself to others you tend to look at them in a positive light and at yourself in a negative light. That can greatly affect your self esteem and lower your motivation levels.
Comparing yourself to other people does not work.
But what about comparing yourself to yourself?
Something interesting happens when you compare yourself to yourself. You tend to look at a former you more objectively than you look at other people. And you also know that any achievements you made previously you are capable of now. So when you compare yourself to yourself you can actually create self motivation.
Always make sure you look at yourself objectively when you’re comparing yourself to yourself. Don’t look at the former you in an overly positive or negative light. Be completely objective.
Ask yourself objective questions.
For instance, you might like to consider all the positive things that you did back then that were good for you, and ask yourself whether you do those same things now. Also ask what mistakes you made in the past that you can learn from now.
But for self motivation, the best tip is to set yourself a benchmark. Were you extremely fit one year? Could you be fitter than that? Set that as your goal. It will give you motivation.
5. Connect with your Life Purpose
It can be hard to find motivation when you don’t see the purpose.
When you wake up wondering just what the point in it all is, you’re not likely to jump out of bed, hit the gym, and then work your butt off at the office for hours on end. You’re more likely to sit there in fits of Poe-esque melancholy woefully ruing the clicking of that clock.
If you truly want to achieve great levels of motivation you have to connect with your purpose in life.
When you truly know what your purpose is it gives you amazing motivation and you will truly work your socks off to ensure that you achieve that purpose.
Do you know what your purpose in life is? Is there a specific reason why you jump out of bed each day raring to go?
Maybe you have a variety of purposes. For instance, you might have one purpose at work, another purpose in your family life, and yet another purpose within your community? If so, great. You probably feel as though you want to make the most out of every second of your life.
If you are not sure what your purpose is, try removing superfluities one by one. What are you doing that you don’t really need to be doing? Stop it. Cut back. Chisel way until you get to your core. That’s where you will find your purpose. And once you find your purpose you will tap into a great reservoir or motivation.
To massively boost self motivation, make it personal
One of the best ways to create self motivation is to remind yourself of the personal reasons for what you’re doing. Try some self reflection questions.
Answer these questions to remind yourself of your purpose. This will boost self motivation in a matter of minutes.
1. How does this project tie-in to your overall purpose in life:
When we connect our current actions to our life purpose we create motivation. Step back. Ask how your current project affects your overall mission.
2. When did you feel most motivated in life? What can you learn from that.
We all have times of high motivation and times of low motivation. We can learn from both. When was your motivation at its highest. Why was your motivation so high at that time? How can you apply those answers to your current situation?
3. When was your motivation low and why?
We all suffer times of low motivation. And we can learn from those times. When was your self motivation low? Why do you think that was the case? What can you learn from it?
NOTE: The following questions are based on mental contrasting, which is a highly powerful technique for self motivation and is backed by scientific research.
4. What would success feel like?
Imagine that you have completed your mission. You have lost weight, gotten your promotion, bought your house, whatever it is… how do you feel? Imagine it.
5. What would failure feel like?
Imagine that you find out for certain that you will never ever succeed. You will never lose weight. you will never be promoted. You will never by that house. How does this feel?
- Research shows our negative feelings about failure motivate us as much as our positive feelings about success.
6. Why will you succeed?
What evidence is there that you will succeed? Why will you lose weight, get the job, buy the house etc.? Be aware of all the reasons you will be successful.
7. Why will you fail?
What is holding you back from promotion, from losing weight, from getting your own place etc?
8. How are you going to avoid failure and move towards success?
Go back over your answer from above. How will you make use of the positives while avoiding the negatives, and how does success feel compared to failure.
Answering these questions will create very high levels of self motivation.
Some of the above questions appear negative, but the overall structure of these questions makes us appraise our circumstances realistically, and studies show that a realistic view that combines both positive and negative is the best perspective for motivation,
Motivated people are happier and more successful
Motivation makes life so much ore enjoyable.
When we have high levels of motivation we make more of life, and when we make more of life we feel good about ourselves.
How high is your motivation?
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