Excerpt from the Declaration of Independence:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all
men are created equal, that they are endowed
by their Creator with certain unalienable
Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty
and the pursuit of Happiness.
This is a day of celebration for people who live in the United States of America. We are celebrating the day we became an independent nation. Independence was declared on July 2, 1776 (the day of the signing of the Declaration of Independence) and was formally recognized on July 4th. Today, we celebrate and recognize our independence. But, most unfortunately, the majority of citizens of the United States are still not truly independent; a situation I find myself in and am presently working to rectify. Continue reading
Motivation series conclusion. Click introduction to start at the beginning.
Over the past few months, I’ve been writing a series of posts on motivation. There isn’t really a way to cover such a deep and sometimes perplexing subject in only several posts. However, I tried to frame some of what I view as the most essential pieces of the motivation puzzle in such a way that you can read any single post and benefit from it, or you could read the entire collection and, perhaps, experience a paradigm shift. That was my intention and I hope I succeeded.
Looking back on this series, I wanted to revisit each post and give an excerpt as well as add a few additional thoughts. Clicking on the title of each post will take you directly to the full version.
Change Occurs from the Inside Out
“It’s simple, really. What you think affects how you act. Everything you do consciously begins, first, with the thought of doing it. Certain thoughts of a specific quality, when habitually repeated, result in certain habits of behavior. Where you are today in life is a result of your habitual thoughts followed by habitual actions. You cannot consistently feed your mind negative thoughts and expect positive results.”
This is about the nature of how we change and evolve as a result of our habits of thought. This relates to motivation at its deepest level because motivation is so closely tied to how we process everything that happens to us—every experience we have or observe other people having—and how we think about ourselves. In order for any meaningful change to occur in our lives, we’re usually going to need to start at the core level of who we are and what we think about ourselves—our capabilities, our self-worth, our skills, how smart we think we are, how well-liked we perceive ourselves to be. If you wonder why you aren’t very motivated, look in these corners of your beliefs, first.
I’m always fascinated by the way life throws completely unexpected challenges at me from time to time. I am on a mission to generate enough income so I can quit my day job. However, I just got laid off from my day job and I’m not yet making any consistent and dependable money through other means. Because of this, I’m not ready to quit my day job just yet. So now I’m looking for a new job, which is always a difficult task for me because I’m usually not interested in most of the jobs that are available.
I have been considering going into behavior specialist work again but that is such a huge commitment and often requires days, evenings, weekends and holidays. I’m not sure I want to be on call like that. Plus, if all goes well, I’ll be quitting my job next year and I don’t like the idea of forming close relationships only to quit my job next year. It’s hard for at-risk youths to form trusting relationships. So it would be like pulling the rug out from under them by quitting next year. Anyway, I’m leaning away from that work but this could change if the right job came along. For now, I’m just looking for something that will serve my needs long enough to get my other projects going.
Motivation Series, Part 7. Check out part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, & 6.
While conviction may be the heart and soul of motivation, accountability is like the magic pill. All goals need conviction—the power and drive that comes from firmly choosing to take action while not leaving room for anything but your expressed outcome. But the truth is, not all of the goals we set are goals in which we, ourselves, are personally interested. Sometimes we have to set goals that we are required or obligated to pursue by way of our job or personal associations. Then there are goals that we set in which the outcome is truly desired but we haven’t yet developed the conviction required to assure that we will achieve it. This is where accountability plays an important role. Let’s look at a few examples that most people have experienced where accountability has helped to motivate us—sometimes kicking and screaming—to reach a desired outcome.
School Assignments: You may have put them off until the last minute, but ultimately, you were (or still are) being held accountable by your teacher. Knowing that you were being graded or that you risked failing the class (which then led to much bigger problems) was just the right kind of accountability that motivated you to complete your assignments most of the time.
On the Job: If you’ve ever had a job, whether pet-sitting for a neighbor, or working for a Fortune 500 company, you were being held accountable for your work output and overall effectiveness every single work day. Your continued employment depended on completing tasks on time. Your raises were likely based on how effectively you did your job. If you missed a deadline or a required task, you were held accountable for that too. You were even being held accountable for getting out of bed and just showing up at work. Continue reading
Motivation Series, Part 6. Check out part 1, 2, 3, 4, & 5.
WARNING: AFTER READING THIS YOUR LIFE MAY NEVER BE THE SAME!
Conviction is critical to motivation. In this post, I’m going to cover how to use conviction to instantly quit smoking (forever!), or how to start a diet and stick with it, and how to set any goal and increase your chance of success to nearly 100%. I say “nearly” because I cannot control your understanding of the concepts I’ll be covering; and I cannot control what kind of goals you have and whether or not outside forces could physically interfere with the attainment of your goal. So, let’s get started…
At your command is potentially the single greatest power you could possess when trying to increase your motivation or accomplish any goal. That power is conviction. Put simply, conviction is a firmly-held belief or opinion. It’s also sometimes called “determination”, “drive” or “will power”. But contained within your conviction is the ability to break new ground in your life, to transform your landscape, and to move mountains.
Conviction is often determined by purpose. When your actions are not in alignment with your purpose, you are more likely to follow the path of least resistance which can drain you of vitality and happiness. When you are following your purpose or principles, you will have a deeper sense of fulfillment in life and will be less likely to need an external boost by giving in to your cravings. Until your purpose and actions are aligned, you will struggle to make progress in the most meaningful areas of your life. This alignment activates conviction. And this is the secret of every great person who has ever walked the face of the earth; they acted with the strength and power of their conviction. And this is a power you also posses! Continue reading
Motivation Series, Part 5. Check out part 1, part 2, part 3, & part 4.
You want to stop eating sweets but you keep a jar of M&Ms on your desk. You honestly want to quit smoking but you have packs of cigarettes lying in every corner of your life so that you’re never far from that temptation. You want to start paying down some debt yet you keep several credit cards with you at all times. These details often go overlooked but have a very big impact on your level of motivation and success. Ignoring these small details often means the difference between progress and frustration.
Little, Tiny, Baby Steps
If the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, does it matter how big your feet are? Nope. Does it matter how big your steps are? Nope, again. The truth is, the only thing that matters is that you take a step…then another…and another. One little, tiny, baby step is just as good as a giant leap; you’re still moving forward.