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Plan and set goals
Motivation is all about knowing where you’re going. This is where planning comes in. In order to have a clear plan, you need to set some goals. Business people love to use the acronym BHAG, which stands for Big Hairy Audacious Goal, and the acronym SMART, which stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time bound.
A BHAG, while not the cutest acronym, asks you to think of a long-term goal that would be life changing. Maybe you’re starting a new company in an established industry, and your BHAG is to become as well respected as the big player in that game. Or maybe it’s something a little less business-y, like moving across the country or becoming your own boss. BHAGs are great for dreaming, and then figuring out how those dreams are achievable.
SMART goals help us increase our productivity by focusing our time and energy into shorter-term goals. Your SMART goals will feed into your BHAG. Let’s take the goal of working for yourself. One of your SMART goals could be to master Photoshop within 2 months. This is relevant to your goal because it will help you gain valuable and necessary skills, and it’s a smaller step that you can accomplish in a set amount of time.
Figuring out your BHAG can be fun and exciting, and can lead you to think about where you are headed in life in the bigger picture. Once you’ve got your big goal established, SMART goals fall into place and are a great way to celebrate smaller accomplishments, which will reinforce your motivation to reach your BHAG in the long run!
Do something active
When you move your body, you wake up your mind. Not only does working out help reduce stress, but it can also boost your self-confidence. These will both help you in the office day-to-day by clearing your head to help you work on what needs to get done, and help you feel more confident in your decisions. That being said, not everyone is a gym rat who loves lifting weights or running on a treadmill. And that’s fine! Studies show that walking for 30 minutes a day garners the same stress-relieving benefits. Find time in your day to take the stairs or to walk instead of taking an Uber, and overall you’ll feel healthier, more at peace, and ready to take on your goals.
Listen to podcasts
I am new to podcasts, but I wish I had gotten into them a long time ago. You might have to weed through a few to find the style that works for you, but once you do, they are a great way to invest in yourself by learning new things while in the car, on the go, or just in your down time. When it comes to finding motivation and leveling up your life, I’d recommend choosing podcasts in the “Health & Lifestyle” category. Many of these focus on increasing happiness, feeling in-control in the office, and adding value to your daily life. Not only can you learn new things simply from the content of the podcast, but listening to stories about other people’s success can prompt you to think about how you can make similar changes in your own life. Here are a few podcasts that I would recommend:
- Side Hustle School with Chris Guillebeau – This one is pretty specific, but it actually helped me realize a passion that I hadn’t focused on before!
- Something You Should Know – learning new things contributes to your confidence and makes it easier for you to pick up new skills at work!
- The Daily Boost – This one isn’t my absolute favorite but there’s definitely some great tips and content to get you going in the morning.
I listen to these on Spotify, but I'm sure you can find them wherever you like to find your podcasts.
Finding one or two podcasts that you love creates a small thing to look forward to daily or weekly that can help motivate you to keep pushing through the week. Add the inspirational content of the podcast to that momentum and you’ll definitely feel motivated to #liveyourbestlife.
Do something you love
Some people may think that in order to have drive and focus, they need to cut out enjoyment and only focus on achievement. I’m not saying that these two are mutually exclusive, but sometimes people can get caught up in the thought that success is hard-won and therefore should feel hard-won. While of course there will be ups and downs day to day, remember to incorporate things that you love to do into your daily and weekly plans. Not only will this help you remain grounded, but it will make your days much more enjoyable! When you’re happy, you’re actually more likely to succeed because of the dopamine and serotonin released in your brain. This one is also important because it'll help you slow down and enjoy every day. There will always be more goals to make, so be sure to appreciate the road.