Motivation is the combination of internal and external factors that stimulate desire and energy to work for inner reasons that go beyond money and status. It is the individual and personalized vision of what it is essential in life. Motivation involves the biological, emotional, social, and cognitive forces that activate behaviour. It is the joy in doing something, the curiosity in learning and the pursuit of set- goals with passion, energy, and resilience.
Motivation is the engine that pushes you further and initiates, guides and maintains your goal-oriented behaviours. Goals and motivation are the two sides of the coin betting on the winning card. Without clear goals thus, there is no built channel to canalize a motivation that dilutes on the way without properly reaching the target.
To ensure a positive year of personal and professional achievements is now time to take the weight, formulate and balance a realistic and ambitious plan for self-development and growth in 2021.
1. Evaluate your 2020 and bring paper and pen
“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” (George Santayana)
Before planning for 2021, take a moment to revisit your 2020 objectives and check off anything you did accomplish. Enjoy the challenges you overcame and the goals you met and assess what made your strategies and efforts succeed. If you didn’t complete some of your goals, figure out the reasons. Did you have too many other things to accomplish? Was your goal no longer relevant? Were you missing efforts? Was the goal adequately formulated? Looking over your 2020 accomplishments and failures is a prerequisite to successfully plan and perform the new year ahead.
Paper and pen are also a mandatory element in your path to victory. Achieving goals requires the ability to persist through obstacles and endurance to keep going in spite of difficulties. According to Dr. Gail Matthews research at Dominican University in California, a written goal is 42 percent more likely to happen. Writing our goals down makes them not just internal wishes but external commitments that gains strength and realism. By putting them on writing, we bring them to existence and formally commit ourselves to persevere for their achievement.
2. Make use of the GROW model (Goal, Reality, Options, What next)
The GROW model provides with an advantageous structure for planning and communicating goals effectively.
This model always starts with the Goal formulation directly link to the purpose of the objective. When working them out, SMART goals are a must. Unless we formulate our efforts in a Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely way, it would be complicated to feel them realistic enough as to invest our energy on them.
The second step of the ladder evaluates Reality or the context in which we are framing each concrete goal. The reality concerning the goal should measure the progress made so far, the expertise and abilities that are as disposal of goal achievement, the knowledge, and the environment. Just by understanding the context, we can identify Attainable, Relevant and Timely objectives.
Options are the third element to be evaluated. They are all about doing what it takes to successfully achieved each setup goal. This point should lead you to the consideration of which options are best for reaching objectives.
Finally, to move toward the goal, a succession of What next? should be put in place providing proper momentum for each stage and demonstrating the direction of travel toward success.
3. Get the big picture and analyze different lifetime categories
Getting the big picture of how your year should look like is the starting point before breaking down into SMART goals defined by the GROW model. Drawing the big picture would provide you with the overall perspective that shapes all other aspects of the decision making processes. Straight afterwards, brainstorm on the different lifetime categories that are important for you. This would help you to balance coverage ensuring to create a growth plan that moves you forward holistically and comprehensively. Going through the different spheres of life (physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, recreational and financial) and creating subcategories (family, career, education, attitudes, and behaviours, etc.) for those ones that need it could be a good way to materialize a cohesive plan.
4. Start with personal goals
Confidence and self-confidence are different attributes that are closely related. As an external element, confidence reinforces or decreases our levels of self-confidence on the bases of ‘out of our full control’ external successful or unsuccessful events. Sel- confidence conversely, is an internal thing maintained and growth by personal individual intentions and efforts. Confidence and self-confidence have an impact on each other. To ensure proper balance and positivity, self-confidence (internal) should be strong enough to be just positive and not negatively impacted by confidence (external) when easily fluctuating.
Being able to grow successfully required to build upon self-confidence. First, we need to start with personal goals to ensure that, whether our external goals are achieved or not, our inner value do not shake and keep us pushing for better.
5. Set small milestones
Goals should be divided into milestones. Milestones are those smaller concrete actions that you need to do today to ensure the final achievement of the objective. Keeping milestones small and incremental gives more opportunities for reward. If a To-Do is too large, it can be demotivating as it seems you are not making progress towards it. Be precise and prioritize them. Focus on performance milestones instead of on outcome ones. Focusing on those actions that are entirely under our control will much easily move you forward your final goals achievement.
6. Draw your goals timeline and set deadlines
Goals need to be materialized in time and space to ensure an efficient and realistic energy investment. Deadlines do not need to be a one-day cutoff, but they need to be closed. There are many different free templates available that can help you to organize and time your goals. Research on the model that you feel more intuitive or just start with the classic Gantt Chart.
7. Identify the expected outcomes of achieving your goals.
There is no greater motivation than seeing materialized the positive benefits and outcomes derived from the achievement of your goals. Using imagination and visualizing your free-of-smoke new self, your master diploma on the wall, your first 10.000 business sales or a successful free of drama move are powerful flashes that will help you break the losing streak.
So do not wait to New Years Day to start working on them. It usually is a hangover moment when energy levels are low, and the body is just looking for a pillow and detox shakes. Setting the first steps before the year has already started will give you extra motivation and a more significant feeling of being in charge and empowered. The best defence is always a good offence!