5 Tips to Stay Motivated in 2016
by Leslie Colin Tribble
Janie Reinart had a great post on Focus to start the GROG off for 2016. Now it's time to talk about motivation to help you achieve that Focus. I did a little Internet research and found some fun tips to help you stay motivated for the year.
1. Set Small Goals
I know you want to get those books published this year, but that's a huge goal that might be overwhelming. Give yourself something to work for that's more manageable, like setting yourself to write a certain number of words each day. Instead of saying, "I'll write for 2 hours a day," shoot instead for an exact word count. That way, you might write for only 20 minutes if the words are flowing and you've achieved your goal, instead of staring at the computer waiting for inspiration for 2 long and dreary hours.
2. Publicize your Efforts
I read that some people resort to Twitter to stay motivated by tweeting their desired word count for the day, then tweeting again when the goal is accomplished. This is accountability married to instant gratification. You can't let your followers down, plus it's great to get those virtual pats on the back as reward.
3. Monetary Motivation
This crazy idea says to give someone you trust $100 and they pay you $10 for every day you meet your writing goals.This would work especially well if you really need that money, say around Christmas.
4.Give Yourself Better Rewards
Bad habits are more compelling simply because the rewards feel greater. How much more satisfying is it to munch a bunch of chips or eat ice cream than it is to feast on carrot sticks? In order to keep you on task, you'll need a stronger motivator. It can be small, but the best motivators are something you can touch and that are intensely personal. Do you love wine? Buy a few bottles of your very favorite and enjoy a glass after reaching your goal. How about expensive, exquisite chocolate? Or maybe you love the sun and can reward yourself with uninterrupted sunbathing. For this to work the reward has to be something you can do immediately after finishing your work - train your mind to associate the work and the reward.
5. Break Up the Effort
Something I've discovered that works for me is breaking up a big chunk of writing time with other activities. If I know I have to crank out a certain number of words, or articles or whatever, I give myself "butt out of chair" breaks. I'll work for one or two hours, then do something else for an hour that's active or movement oriented. That way I can vacuum the house, play with the dogs, bring in firewood, or go for a quick walk. The activity keeps me awake and reduces the feeling that I'm spreading physically while I'm spreading my writing wings.
How do you stay motivated with your goals and resolutions for a new year?