10 Ways To Stay Motivated

Life can be an absolute whirlwind at times and we all find ourselves constantly buried in to-do lists that seem to be ever-growing. One of the biggest challenges we can face is trying to maintain a good level of motivation to help you get through these busy times. It's so easy to fall into some sort of rut that seems impossible to climb out of, but in this post I will be offering some tips on how to maintain your motivation.

As a university student currently studying for my summer exams, motivation is something that I need in abundance, for example; motivation to write a really good essay that I'm proud of, to keep at my extra-curricular hobbies and of course, turning up to all my lectures and seminars. Therefore, I find it absolutely essential to remind myself of little tips and tricks I can use to keep focussed and raring to go.

I hope those of you who are in need of a little inspiration and motivation will find this post to be somewhat uplifting and that you can take something useful away from it. 

1: Find out your goal

Before attempting any other little activities to increase motivation, the first step is to work out what you actually want to achieve, what your goals are. Long term and short term. Whether your goal is to finish your essay for an upcoming deadline, earn a promotion, become a detective or to tone your body, you need to have a concrete idea of where you are going, what the final stop is on your route. Once you have sat down and figured out what it is you want to achieve, you will find it easier to stay motivated as you know exactly what all your hard work is for. I recommend having some kind of vision board or list pinned up on your wall so you can visualise these goals and wake up knowing exactly what you want. In the words of the Dalai Lama (I would listen to him):

2: Get Creative

As a creative person, it's absolutely essential that I get my creative juices flowing at least once a day. Whether it's writing a blog post, putting my sketching pencils to paper or having a sing-song session with a friend, getting creative is a great way to break up a day that's academically focussed and it's also rather relaxing. I would recommend investing in some sketching or colouring pencils and doing a little drawing, with your favourite playlist playing in the background. You don't have to be the next Picasso, the aim is to just get your brain feeling creatively inspired. Not only is it enjoyable, but it's also productive and you feel as though you've got something to show for what you've done, which is really motivating. Here's a little sketch I did during a break from my essay at University:

3: Plan Plan Plan

Planning your upcoming activities/events is an excellent way to stay motivated. Planning out your days ahead will help introduce clarity and you will feel as though your day is more structured and therefore, less time is wasted not knowing what to do next. Moreover, planning fun activities gives you something to look forward to, encouraging you to work hard so you can accordingly play hard. I would suggest arranging evening engagements for after your work/studies, such as dinner out with your friends/family. Giving yourself something to look forward to acts as such an incentive to get everything you need done so that you aren't pondering over it come the evening. Having a calendar or diary will also help you to keep your plans organised and visually laid out for you, which visually-stimulated people will find to be extremely effective and useful.

4: Dress to Impress

Now I wouldn't be a very good fashion blogger if my posts didn't have something fashion-related involved in them. As someone who loves fashion, style and putting outfits together, it's also paramount that I motivate myself through my clothing choices. Dressing properly for the day is a perfect way to train your brain and body into being ready and raring to go for your upcoming task. It's unbelievably tempting to just stay in my jammies all day if I'm inside working, however, this will switch my brain into relax mode, which is not motivating at all. Dressing up and looking somewhat presentable will enable you to feel ready for the day and will motivate you into completing everything you want to whilst also feeling happy and beautiful in yourself. If you're leaving the house, you never know who you're going to bump in to, so it's always a good plan to dress as if you're going to see your worst enemy.

5: Eliminate Distractions

The procrastinators among us will know exactly what this step means and it probably won't be the first time many of you will be hearing this. In the current society we live in, we are surrounded by a multitude of distractions whether they be phone notifications, virtual games or even having people around us that are bad influences. If you want to stay motivated, it's essential to keep your head down and remove anything that could serve as a distraction. Whenever you take a break, that is an appropriate time to check your phone or to detract from what you were doing; but only for a short while. If you allow yourself to be disturbed easily, it's wise to go that extra mile to ensure it won't frequently be happening. Put your phone in another room, find a quiet, comfortable place to carry out your task and you'll be stupefied to notice the difference it will have on your progress.

6: Study Self-Improvement

I realise the word "study" here may put you off slightly, but I don't mean the sort of studying where it involves copious research and strenuous homework, but rather the kind of laid-back studying which can be enjoyable whilst informative. Informing yourself on self-improvement will make a drastic difference to your motivation as it will keep you feeling inspired and you'll learn new ways to better yourself as a person which, ultimately, will motivate you to achieve what you want in your life. I personally recommend searching the self-improvement section on Stumbleupon as some of the articles I have read whilst stumbling have been extremely uplifting and I now turn to that as a catalyst when I'm struggling.

7: Read about someone who is successful in your field

No matter what it is you want to do, what industry you aim to work in, there will always be someone who has paved the way for you. Taking advice from the experiences of those who have become masters in your field will enable you to discover proven ways of achieving what you want. Better yet, you could attend/watch online a talk that this person may have presented, and this will get you raring to go as you now have human proof that what you want to do is possible. For me personally, I have attended talks by people in the fashion industry, one of whom actually gave a lecture at my school, which was extremely fortunate as I learnt a great deal from listening to his experience. Invest in a few books whose author inspires you and does what it is you wish to do yourself, and actually take every morsel of advice on board. You won't look back. 

8: Eat good food

It's surprising for me to be mentioning this as I probably have the biggest sweet tooth in the entire universe. Only recently, after watching a documentary about the traffic light food labelling system, I have become a lot more aware about the healthiness of my food choices. Food is the fuel for our mind and bodies, so whatever you fuel yourselves with will result in a certain type of energy being produced. Don't get me wrong, it's good to indulge every once in a while and I don't particularly agree with dieting or limiting yourself to the extent you feel unhappy or craving, but it's extremely important to inform yourself about what you are putting into your bodies. If you feed yourself with nourishing food filled with nutrients and vitamins, you will feel more energised and therefore more motivated. If you don't feel as though your diet is supplying you with enough vitamins, taking supplements such as Vitamin B or probiotics will encourage your system to feel better. 

9: Get Something Wrong

This may sound like a really terrible piece of advice, but don't just take the statement at face value, please. What I mean to express is that in order to progress, sometimes we need to experience a little bit of failure in order to pinpoint where things are going wrong, or to just give yourself a metaphorical slap in the face. For example, if you're studying for exams and you work at a past paper only to get your answer completely and utterly wrong, thats O.K. Acceptance is the first step of nailing this. You're never going to really get anywhere if you're always getting things perfect first time, as there is ALWAYS room for improvement and it's important to know which areas need changing the most. Don't be afraid of failure, even if you've been programmed to try and be consistently perfect. You may learn more from your failures than from your successes.

10: Enjoy yourself!

We are only given 1 shot at life and I think it's absolutely paramount to be able to look back and say you've thoroughly, deeply enjoyed yourself throughout the process. It would be naive of me to preach that life is always going to be buckets of fun because, of course, there are going to be moments where you do have a wobble, but it's necessary to realise that these instances are only temporary. It may seem that one particular thing going on in your life is the be-all-and-end-all, but I genuinely believe that you're lucky enough to be here in the first place, so you may as well use it to your maximum capacity and this means ENJOYING YOURSELF. Don't sweat the small stuff. Hang out with your friends and family. Have only a handful of BEST friends that you can trust with your life. Laugh often. Eat out in cool, new restaurants. Have that enormous slice of cake (Gluten-free for me, please!).  Give people hugs when you see them. Get excited about the little things. Live and breath happiness and adventure because not only will you motivate yourself to be a better person and get things done, but you'll help the others around you to do the same.


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