What is this blog about?

There is no such thing as an expert on the topic of Life. We all have had our battles, our suffering, and our questions. Despite the uniqueness of our personal obstacles, we have endured them. We have endured them well enough to advise those behind us as to how to do the same. I have done the research on your behalf regarding the multitude of reasons why wisdom exists. My mission is to utilize the voices of the world's greatest thinkers and heroes to compose a guideline of life's wisdom so that you don't have to experience those trials alone.

If you have any questions, please tweet them to me @JoeSielski or email me at JJSielskiJr@comcast.net

(Please title your email with the word "Wisdom" so I know it will be for this blog.)

I will do my best to try and answer every question as quickly and efficiently as possible. Thanks.

Friday, May 16, 2014

The Top 10 Things to Improve Motivation

It's almost summer, are you ready?  Do you want that beach body?  Maybe you're looking for something else.  Can't get that PowerPoint finished?  How about that laundry?  Maybe you want to write a book.   (I can't tell you how many people have mentioned the desire to write a book after hearing about mine.)

Anyway, it's time to motivate yourself!   It's time to spring into action. 

These are A Life With Wisdom's Top 10 Things to Improve your Motivation:

1.  Establish the Goal.   
Motivation cannot be achieved until a goal has been identified.  So figure it out!  Understanding the destination reveals the path.  It's that simple.  What do you want to do?   (Since summer is approaching, for this list, I will reference Fitness as the example goal.)

2.  Specify the Goal
Be genuine about what your goal is.   What do you want?  What don't you want?  Edit out extraneous matter.  This establishes focus.
Example:  Being in shape?  Ok, what kind of shape?  Muscular? Lean? Flexible? What will that entail?

3.  Write it down.
Make a list of goals.  Write down different descriptions of the same goal.   Maybe draw it, create a vision board, take a photo of it.   Either way, turn the idea of a goal into a physical reminder for yourself.
Example:    Writing reminders for yourself, creating a schedule for fitness will help you to feel responsible for your goals.

4.  Identify the Obstacles
Even if you need to make a written list of the distractions you might encounter, do it.  It will help.   It will help because you can remain equally as mindful of both the goals and their distractions.
Example:  Laziness!!!!!   (This is pretty much the greatest threat to motivation anyway)  Bad nutritional options, the temptation to quit, bad peer pressure.....  doughnuts!!!!

5.  Be Fair to Yourself
If your goal is grandiose or lofty, you might get burnt out and lose willpower.  If this is a possibility, create smaller goals that will eventually add up to the largest one.   But, always make sure that there is a goal to be accessed.
Example:  If you want to be in better shape, but don't have time all the time, don't fret.  You'll get more.   To continue with fitness as our example:  running 1 mile is an accomplishment if you want to run a 5K later; and running a 5k is an accomplishment if you want to run a 10k later.   However, you're still aware that one day, you'll do a full marathon!

6.  Differentiate between the Intrinsic and Extrinsic goals. 
This is a unique aspect of motivation that is often ignored.   All goals have both mental and physical qualities. It's important to know why you're being motivated.  This is another way to specify your goal. 
Intrinsic goals are internal.  They are emotions and feelings of well-being.
Extrinsic goals are tangible.  They are physical, real-life things.  (People, money, that vacation you wanted) 
Example (intrinsic):  Confidence, feeling happy, having clarity of mind, receiving attention
Example (extrinsic):  A healthier body, better sleep patterns, a better physique, favored clothes. 

7.  Identify positive vs negative motivators. 
This is another ignored facet of motivation.   Positive motivators attract us and we avoid the negative ones.     Generally, the journey begins because we are being repulsed by some negative motivator that springs us into action.   Discover them and understand their value.  Depending on your perception, both forms are adequate sources of motivation.  However, the positive motivation is the goal and therefore it must be identified and sought.
Example (negative):   Unhappy with your appearance, you feel fat, you feel judged for being fat
Example (positive):   Happy with your appearance, feeling confident, receiving positive attention

8.  Start!  Do it!  Initiate it!  Begin!  Commence! 
 This is possibly the most important step of them all.  You can have a goal and still lack the courage to begin. That begins with a choice.  So choose to begin!
Example:  Get off your butt and work out, because nobody can do it for you!

9.  Keep going!   No stopping allowed!   
This is also a choice.   The only real obstacle in life is the temptation to quit.  Because even if you hit a wall, it doesn't mean you have to choose to stop.  There are always alternate options to help you in staying motivated.   You chose your goal, now commit to it.
Example:   Just ran a mile?  Congrats, now run one more.  This is also the value in having a schedule.  You don't like running?  Try swimming, cycling, dancing, rowing, martial arts or rockclimbing.  Ask a friend to join you.

10.  Repeat.
 If you did it once, you can do it again!  

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