How can I increase my motivation?

Charles J. Sophy, MD
Adolescent Medicine

Attend a personal development workshop.

Join a Master Mind group. Meeting with other like-minded people can help you see your ideas from a different perspective.


Read or listen to motivational material.

Take time off.

Lastly, associate with positive people.

    The best way to increase your motivation is to define yourself by your gifts. When you know what you are good at, and define yourself by that, you gain confidence which leads to increased desire to show what you have and apply yourself. Below are some quick tools for increasing your motivation on the spot:
    • Think of something you want to accomplish but are not feeling motivated to do. Write a list of 10 reasons you can be successful at this. For example if you have to do a job search and are not feeling motivated you can list the reasons you will be successful finding a job, such as having unique work experience, having high quality references, having excellent data management skills etc.
    • Increase your interest. If you have to do something that doesn't feel interesting ask yourself "How can I make this more fun?" Can you find someone to help you with a project, or can you listen to your favorite music while doing it, or work outside in a natural setting?
    • Decrease stress. High levels of stress kill motivation. You need to manage your stress. Practicing relaxation techniques will increase your motivation. The quickest ways to decrease stress are deep breathing exercises, meditation, slowing down, recreational activities, physical activity and social engagement.
    • You can increase motivation by thinking of how good you will feel when a task is behind you. Instead of thinking of how terrible it will be to do your taxes, think of how great you will feel when it is all over. The positive feeling of being free of it will motivate you to get it done.
    • The distraction delay technique can be helpful to keep you motivated. If you are working on one project and your motivation is high but then you think of something you'd rather be doing or should be doing your motivation will get derailed. You can stop this by keeping a journal or writing on your cell phone or lap top a list of all the distractions that come to your mind. Promise yourself you will take a look at the list of things that pop into your mind as soon as you have completed your current project.
    • Instead of "What do I feel like doing?" Ask yourself "What is my purpose in this moment?"

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    Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.