Jack was frustrated. He was looking for a new job. Nothing was sticking out to him. He didn’t know what direction to go next. He didn’t have a bad job. It just, well, was boring. So was his life. Jack didn’t know what he wanted to do with his life. But he didn’t want what he had. He needed motivation. A “Why” for what he does.
What is Motivation?
To start, motivation, is not how we feel. Our feelings can change moment to moment. They can even make us feel like our goals aren’t worthwhile. Even when we know they are important. So motivation is not feeling motivated. Instead:
Motivation is our “WHY” for what we do.
To uncover your motivation, ask yourself:
- Where do I want to see myself 5 years from now (1 year can work, too)
- What is the emotional reason behind what I want to do? How would it impact me if I didn’t get what I am working towards?
- Why is that important to me?
- Keep repeating the last two questions until you get a massive and emotional reason.
That is your “WHY”
Imagine waking up in the morning. You don’t feel like following through with your plans for the day. But you want to obtain your vision for the future. Armed with your “WHY”, it is much easier to choose to do what you need to do over what you feel like doing.
Back to Jack
Jack was struggling. He was between jobs. His last employer wasn’t a good fit and they both agreed he should find work elsewhere. He was discouraged. But he knew he needed to find a job. His family depended on it. And he felt better being able to provide for his family. He had a “WHY”. he had motivation. Even though he dreaded filling out another job application he did anyway. Providing for his family was more important than being uncomfortable. So he moved forward with his goals. The next week he had an interview and was hired. He was glad he applied for that job.
It isn’t always easy to uncover our “WHY”. Sometimes we know what it is but it doesn’t seem to be enough to keep us moving. Talking to a good friend or a counselor can help clarify what is important and help you find your motivation again.