How to Stay Motivated
You might be here because you resent going to school, work, or whateva. Regardless, you go because you'd face consequences if you didn't. But even the stuff you're passionate about feels boring and mundane every now and then. And it's bothering the hell out of you because, well, you thought you were supposed to love it. I know most of you were probably looking for an easy DIY hack but tough luck, I'm not giving you an easy way out because there is no easy way out. In order to get things done, you have to put in some work because if you don't, who will?
Motivation is tricky. Sometimes I'll feel like I could run ten miles (just kidding, just one cuh stamina is a joke in dis beaut), do the laundry, and cook myself a healthy meal within the next hour. Then two seconds after, I'll turn around and tell myself "nah, five minutes on my phone first". Before I know it, it's time to go sleep. We tell ourselves it's because we lack motivation. We'll feel really guilty for telling ourselves five more minutes over 200 times and it's cycle you want to fall out of. Then what do you do? You search on google "How to motivate yourself", hoping to find a reason or a way to push yourself into doing whatever you needed/wanted to do, ultimately finding yourself here. So without further adieu, how the hell do you find that extra juice on days you really could care less?
Plot twist ladies and gentlemen: Motivation is bull. It's great at igniting flames but that's just the beginning of it. Yeah sure, I guess you can keep adding more and more fuel but you'll burn yourself out (no pun intended) because eventually, the wood would get too wet (it's a thing). Imagine this. You were at a bonfire last night but every time you tried making a s'more, the flame went out. You spent your whole night this way, relighting it until the wood became too wet for you to make a single s'more. The agony. Obviously, the flame wouldn't just go out but it's imagery for those of you who need a visual. Fight me.
Anyways, motivation is great when it works but sooner or later, you'll come across a day where you just feel like crap. It sucks but it's so true. That's why you're here isn't it? So this is my solution to you, my four steps to "staying motivated" or rather, "How to get things done":
1. Seek motivation through inspiration: The inspiration you find will be your motivator, ultimately being your reason. Whether it's for a future career or a means to an end. You can find inspiration by surrounding yourself with people with the same interests, watching youtube videos, or reading posts like this one! I know I said motivation is bull but that's only when you depend on it for the long run. As in, you can't keep using it to fuel yourself but at least have a reason for why you want/need to do ignite your wood. Otherwise, it's a waste of your time. It's like lighting a fire and then abandoning it right after. That's a whole 'notha issue.
2. Be determined: Say you just watched a ten minute youtube video and now you're sitting at your desk super inspired. You're inspired but so what? Where's inspiration going to get you? It's time to act on it. Your determination is what's going to fuel your desire for a stronger willpower, which leads us to the third step.
3. Willpower: Willpower is a skill that's developed over time. It is the crucial step before the last one and it's not going to happen over night. You can, however, start small by going to sleep at the same time, cleaning up after yourself right away, meditating, etc. There are so many things you can do to build this skill. I'll link my "How to Strengthen Your Willpower" post here once it's up.
4. The Final Step, discipline: I couldn't find a tangible way to explain this so here's a piece from our editor, Catherine, she hit the nail on the head: "Discipline [is] the practice in which you use your willpower under your own rules. Say forcing myself to read a book once a year." Honestly, step three and four could have been combined because like Catherine said, discipline is a practice that necessitates willpower but it felt necessary to explain both parts of the relationship.
Long story short: It's not motivation you should be depending on, it's discipline you should working to grow. Depending on motivation means that you're waiting for pure emotion to drive you but in the real world, you need to be able to put your hands on the wheel and take charge.
Before I sign off, I just wanna say, you can do it! I know that there's so much more to it than 4 steps but I didn't want to flood this page with a huge rant. I hope what I said made sense. In the midst of trying to condense my thoughts, I felt like it started losing clarity. Comment your questions, I'll elaborate through my replies. If you don't want to publicize your thoughts, feel free to contact me through my instagram (@knxll_), email, or the contact page. I'd love to help out or just listen. We gotta be there for each other, ya know??
KNXLL, Know x all
Photo Taken by: Mia Griggs @miagriggs5