Motivation? Goals? Something we all want in life, but something that is not always easy to do. We all have specific goals and we all have a future planned out, but it does not always mean that it will happen.

Motivation is a key aspect of life and one that will push you further and will make it easier to reach your goals, even if its tough, it’ll be worth it, if you motivate yourself to keep going.

1) Make sure they’re your goals

Don’t just make them your goals, because other people have them too. Make goals that make you happy and are attainable, goals that you know you want to achieve, not just ones you add on for the fun of it. Making goals can improve your mood overall, especially when you reach that specific one, it can feel like all the hard work you put in, finally paid of.

Which is why, setting goals in a great way to keep you motivated. Start by setting a goal, then make a plan of how you’re going to reach it, get to work, start working on your goal, push yourself and the most important ones are stick to it and then eventually you’ll reach your goal. You want to be a nurse? Okay, start writing a plan. What education do you need? Who do you speak to? Are there any apprenticeship programmes available? Don’t look back and say ‘I wish i did that’. You were able to all along!

2) Break the goal down

The best way to start, is by making your goal ‘smaller’ what this means, is to break it down, don’t just overwhelm yourself with loads of different ways to achieve it and in a short amount of time.

Make it so that, you focus on a specific bit to do in an amount of time that is attainable, set deadlines for the tasks. For example: if you want to tidy your wardrobe. Keep in mind that you’re going to ‘tackle the shoes, then the coats, then the clothes etc.’ This method can make the biggest task feel more manageable.

3) Create a vision board

A vision board is a great way to keep you motivated. What are your goals and dreams? Find pictures and print them. Go online and locate the images that best represent your goals or cut them out from magazines.

Buy a board so you can hang them in your home or office and pin the photos up that inspire you. Cut out motivational sayings and quotes that go with it. Pictures can be powerful motivators. Find ones that best represent what you’re working hard for and pin them up somewhere to see everyday.

4) Cut out distractions

Limit your distractions, of course we all have them, and yes sometimes it can be hard to cut them out completely. But staying motivated is not easy, but you can help yourself by cutting out some of them distractions. Television, internet, cell phones, games and excessive socialising count as distractions.

If you’re serious about your goals, then you have to get serious about how you use your time that you do have. Create blocks of time where you decide to turn everything off. This includes phones, home phone, internet or anything that may disrupt you.

5) Eliminate procrastination

Procrastination is the silent killer. A number one to sap motivation. If you want to stay motivated and achieve your dreams, you have to limit procrastination from your life, it’s definitely not easy, but it’s necessary. If you want to achieve something, but you think of many ways to put it off and just lay around all day wondering why you didn’t do that certain thing, is procrastination.

Sometimes we do it, because we feel we won’t be effective in a certain task, you focus less on what it will benefit for your future and more so on the present, your perfectionism gets in the way and sometimes you can simply feel stressed, which can lead you to not want to do anything. Everyone suffers with it, it’s something we all do, but the only way to achieve your goals is to pull yourself together and smash it.

6) Watch a YouTube video

Yes, it may sound silly. But doing something so simple as watching a YouTube video, or reading something from about someone achieving their goals, will inspire you.

Whether you’re looking for inspiration, motivation, or anything in between, YouTube is a great resource. Often, when we’re trying to reach our goals, we will hit blocks in the road and will suffer from setbacks, it’s hard to see a forest through the trees. Keep that in mind and don’t give up.

7) Listen to music

A simple method to stay motivated is to listen to music. Of course, it has to be the right kind. What music motivates you? What music inspires you? You can get motivated by creating a soundtrack. Find songs that you love, listen to them. While you listen, visualise your future. There is real power in music.

If you have a certain song that puts you in the mood to work or to do something, listen to it. For example, if there is one song that motivates you to keep going when your exercising, listen to it because it will create a feeling of motivation and it’ll push you harder.

8) Remember why you made the goals

Reasons why you want to achieve something can be a powerful motivator. If you didn’t set goals for why you wanted to achieve them, then now you need to revisit and establish real reasons for wanting to see them through.

Goals will eventually loose their meaning when the reasons we want to achieve them disappear. If you want to get motivated and stay motivated, find real reasons. What are some examples of real reasons? It’s not all about money or fame- those are superficial reasons. Things like family, freedom and security are proper reasons.

9) Manage your time better

If you have poor time management, life can be a struggle. Stay motivated by organising your time better. We’re all guilty of not being efficient with our time keeping.

No one works all the time, but once you get the habit of managing your time, you will make progress. No one has more time than the other person, no matter where they’re from, what they do, or who they know. Learn to manage your time, focus on long term goals, avoid distractions and interruptions and limit time wasting activities.

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Student Journalist