Have you ever set off on a new challenge or vision only to be derailed by a complete lack of motivation?
In 2022, only 28 per cent of Britons managed to keep their New Year resolutions. While many factors could have contributed to this, it’s likely that a lack of motivation was the major culprit here. That’s why I just had to speak to someone who has it in spades!
On the most recent episode of my podcast, I chatted with Nicky Forster, the Goal Setting Coach (listen to the full conversation here). Nicky used to be a professional football player, and although he’s since switched careers, he’s still in the habit of achieving goals.
Nicky wants you to be able to cope with setbacks, achieve your goals, and seize every opportunity to succeed. By the time you finish reading this blog, you’ll most likely be inspired to get on with your goals!
Three tips to help you move towards your goals
Nicky identified a few ways to regain your motivation and move one step closer towards your goals. He broke it down into three simple tips:
- Just do it (for three minutes)
- Embrace the micro-stressors
- Make the most of the time you have in life
Just do it
A lack of motivation often leaves us feeling uninspired about our goals and life in general. Fortunately, Nicky has a simple, three-minute solution for combatting these moments.
Nicky: “If you’re struggling to find that momentum or motivation to get moving, try out this simple exercise (it works for physical goals, too!). Count yourself down from five and then take action, whether it’s opening up your laptop or going to the gym – whatever it is.
All you need to do is carry out that action that you committed to doing for three minutes. I call it a three-minute workout, and it doesn’t have to be physical. It could also be cognitive or business related. Set a timer, and once the three minutes are up, you can call it a day. Usually, when those three minutes are up, 99 per cent of people will continue. Because once they’ve gotten beyond that initial resistance, the motivation starts to flow.”
Embrace the micro-stressors
If you’ve followed any of my previous blogs, you’ll know that obstacles and stressors can often lead to a lack of motivation, which in turn, prevents us from reaching our goals. While our natural instinct as goal-getters may be to eliminate these obstacles, Nicky suggests that the small stressors may have a hidden advantage.
Nicky: “A lot of life is geared towards trying to remove those little obstacles, setbacks, and failures. But I think we shouldn’t try and do that too much. Those setbacks, failures, and the little things that test and challenge us will always be there in our lives. So I think we should be embracing them, not trying to eliminate them.
Deliberate and controlled exposure to micro-stressors is a really good way to cope with setbacks when they arise. For instance, you could choose to have a cold shower in the morning. It’s basically just exposing yourself to a situation that is semi-unpleasant but tolerable. And it just increases our resilience against those little stressors when they come up unannounced.”
I believe that exposing ourselves to these tiny pockets of unpleasantness not only boosts our resilience but also reminds us that we’re capable of so much more. On many occasions, we may have stopped ourselves from moving ahead with a goal simply because we think we’re incapable of achieving it.
This is why Nicky’s next insight is so important.
Are you making the most of the time you have?
Nicky: “We should all understand that we have a finite amount of time. While it may sound morbid, the greatest hurdle for us all, unfortunately, is death, and we don’t know when that is. So, we owe it to ourselves to make the most of the time we have and do as much as we can with it. When that time finally comes, and we leave, none of us are going to be looking back and thinking, ‘Well, I’m glad I got through that box set on Netflix’.
We’ll probably be looking back at those memories that we had in life and the achievements we’ve had. In particular, it’ll be the things that took more time to achieve, whether it is a family holiday, a big travel experience, or running a marathon.”
When you do get to lay your head on the pillow for the last time, will you be looking back with regret at the things you haven’t done? Or will you look back with the reassurance that you’ve achieved quite a lot?
Seize every opportunity you can
I’m particular about making the most of the time I have on earth to complete new quests and fulfil all my goals. Ultimately, it doesn’t even matter if we’re unsuccessful in crossing the finish line. What matters is that we gave it our best shot and gained a whole new experience.
Has this blog inspired you to take further action towards your dreams?