“Motivation is something that you can largely control through the choices you make. Yes, it does take some effort on your part, but so does forcing yourself to push through without feeling motivated.”
You Feel What You See
Your world is translated in your brain as a series of pictures. These pictures filter your experience and the meaning it holds for you. When they are vividly coloured, have lots of detail and are close to you they have a direct influence on how you feel. When you dial down the sensory details, blur out some details, fade the colours and move the picture further away from you the urgency and emotion fades.
This means that you can control the intensity of your feelings by the way you allow these pictures to present themselves to you. It works just about every emotion and state both positive and negative, but here I want to focus on it’s influence on your motivation.
Dialing up Your Motivation: An Exercise
Imagine what would change if you could switch your motivation on at will in any area of life…
- Your health and fitness – yes, you want to take care of your health and improve your fitness, but every time it comes to action your willpower fades
- Your nutrition plans – of course you plan to eat healthy food and fuel your body, but how often do you make poor choices because your motivation has slipped away
- That challenging project at work or home that demands all your skill and includes elements you actively dislike doing
- Boring and routine tasks that you want to do well, but keep putting off or half-completing;
- Unpleasant tasks that still need to be completed
- Important projects that need to be worked on whether you are motivated or not…
I’m sure you get the picture. Some days motivation is right there bubbling away, other days it just doesn’t seem to be around at all but you still need to do things for pleasure, profit, or simply because they’re your responsibility.
- Visualise one of those tasks and bring a picture of the activity and its outcome on your mental screen (start with something you usually enjoy, but just can’t be bothered with right now – just for fun!);
- How do you feel about it?
- Now make that picture, brighter, clearer, and more excitingly vivid;
- Check in on your feelings again. Have they changed? Do you feel more motivated and energised about that thing?
- Bring the picture closer still, so it’s right there in front of you and check how you feel;
- Now zoom the picture far away across the room, let the colours and details fade out of the picture;
- Notice how your feelings about the activity changed;
- And then bring the picture back close to you and turn up the brightness and detail again.
Your Focus Transforms Your Feelings
The exercise above is not merely academic. It is a rapid and powerful way of transforming your motivational feelings. It takes less than a minute to generate a surge of emotion that will carry you through your day and duties with productive energy. All that is needed is for you to choose to make the change.
In reality, there are a lot of things in life that you can’t change. You can’t change other people. You can’t change your family members and you can’t always change the quality of your relationship with them either. You can’t easily change your work situation and the daily tasks that need to be completed, either. BUT…
You can change the meaning you give those things and the way you approach them!
The Marriage of Motivation and Engagement
In Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) we often say “Energy flows where attention goes.” Imagine if you could focus your mind on a desired outcome and experience a surge of energy and motivation that overcame your resistance to starting and sustained you through your work day. Actually you can. I use this technique repeatedly almost every day to generate the momentum that is carrying my closer to my destination.
Not only does this simple technique provide me with motivation, it also helps me to engage more radically with my tasks. I usually find that engagement leads to better outcomes and my clients have made the same observation in their attempts because when we are disengaged from the task at hand we’re not the only people who put in less effort, those around us tend to care less as well.
Like anything else in life creating more motivation and engagement stems from a choice that only you can make: a choice to do what it takes to break through your own fog of indifference and apathy and summon the vision of your desired outcome… But why wouldn’t you choose to take such a simple and transformative step?
So, What Will You Choose?
You always have a choice, don’t you?
You can choose a response that gives more meaning to situations and people that make you happy, and less meaning to those that cause you stress and unhappiness… Or you can choose to let misery and inaction control your life.
A HOWTO Session brings clarity and helps you focus on what you really want so that you can make the decisions you need to make…. Like choosing to create motivation and engagement even when you don’t initially feel like it! Book your session now!