The Key to Internal Motivation – Finding Your “Why”
We all have things we’ve got to get done. Some of them are work related, some of them are chores around the house, and some have to do with the people we care about. As long as we’re having fun and are enjoying what we’re doing, motivation isn’t an issue. But when it is something we don’t really want to do, it gets a bit trickier. Then we have to motivate ourselves to get off the couch and get to work. And that internal motivation isn’t always easy.
Today I want to share a little strategy with you that will make it easy to get and stay motivated. The key is to find your “why”. The why is simply the reason why something needs to get done and how it benefits you in the end.
Your reason for doing something – your “why” – can be something big or small. For example, your motivation for taking out the trash can be as simple as wanting a clean, good-smelling kitchen. Your reason for planting a garden on the other hand may be something bigger. You’re spending all that hard work so you can have plenty of healthy, fresh vegetables to feed your family and enough extra so you can share with people in need.
Give it a try. The next time you run into an issue with motivating yourself to get something done that you don’t really want to do, stop and think. Think about why it is important to get this done. Sometimes the answer will simply be so you can stop worrying about it and move on with your day. Sometimes it will be because you’ll enjoy the end result. And sometimes it will be because it benefits a loved one, friend, or even a stranger.
Focus on the “why” and the benefit of getting things done. Then get to work and keep at it, using your why as motivation when needed, until you’re done. Often all it takes is to take that first step. Once we get started, sticking with a job until it is done is easier than taking that first step. Exercise is a great example. Let’s say you made it a goal to go for a 30 minute walk each day to improve your health. Getting yourself off the couch and out the door is the hard part. Once you start walking, it becomes easy to get it done and you feel great after your walk.
This type of internal motivation works surprisingly well. In fact, it’s more effective than having a boss or spouse tell you what to do or look at you accusingly until it’s done.