Top tips to stay motivated

Do you ever find it hard to get started on a new project, especially if it is something on top of what you are already doing? Do you wonder where to start? Do you get stuck in deciding which is the best way to set up the project, to design the steps, to get others involved and what they would contribute? Then suddenly, it’s three or four weeks later and you’ve got nowhere!

This time we are looking at tips to sustain motivation. These are more about actually doing your project than getting into a frame of mind so that you can do it.

There are many ways to procrastinate. We all deal with multiple demands every day. Sometimes it’s hard to keep following through, even when you’ve worked out the steps to reach your project goal.

How can you find the time?

A good way to start a project is by just starting it. Once you’ve made a plan, you can adjust it if you need to. It’s only a plan. But this doesn’t necessarily mean throwing away the efforts you’ve made already. If it doesn’t all fit your current project, you can save that for another one. It’s also important to be clear about the steps and contributions for each collaborator and to agree about the fixed timelines and deadlines for completing these steps.

This might not work for you, but for me, if I start working on a large project first thing in the morning, I can spend a couple of hours on it before doing anything else in my day. That’s a sure way to make steady progress towards project completion. You, on the other hand, might have family commitments, a morning exercise routine or an early start at work. This means you’ll need to find time later in the day for that hour or two. Or you might be what’s called a “night owl” where you do your project work while others around you are sleeping.

How do you stay focused?

An often overlooked point is the power of tea. Yes, seriously! Whatever schedule fits your lifestyle, I can guarantee you that cups of tea will help you find that extra energy.

What’s essential is to put in the time regularly and consistently to achieve your project milestones. This way, you’re giving yourself the best chance to make it come to fruition. If you skip a day, or a few days, come back on track and pick up that steady rhythm again. After a few weeks, you can look back and see what you’ve managed to do bit, bit by bit, by devoting some time, regularly, to your project. And remember those cups of tea!

What about some inspiring thoughts?

Quotes can be very helpful. These are some that sum up the rest of what I want to say much better than I could:

“Life is like riding a bicycle, you must keep moving.” (Albert Einstein)

It’s not about being perfect. It’s not about where you get yourself in the end. There’s power in allowing yourself to be known and heard… in using your authentic voice.” (Michelle Obama)

“Simplicity, patience, compassion – these three are your greatest treasures.” (Lao Tzu)