Motivation. Just the word alone may send shivers up your spine. Having motivation is a great feeling, as it adds an extra spring in your step and gives you the energy and confidence you need to try something new. It’s how great things are achieved and it is crucial to your continued success, both in life and business.

The problem arises on those days when motivation is hard to come by. These days can stretch into weeks, or even months, if you are not careful. These days are most common during those times in life where work, life and the stresses that affect us all really come to the fore.

That’s why it is as important to work on maintaining high motivation levels as it is to put the work in to attain your goal. Here I am going to share a little bit of friendly advice that has seen us through some tough times and will hopefully help you a little too.

Set Your Goal

A wishy-washy approach to life will leave you unfocused and unfulfilled. If you don’t know what you want to achieve, you can’t put a plan into action that will help you to fulfil your desires. Furthermore, having only vague goals in mind will affect your motivation, as it belittles what you hope to achieve and makes you feel like your goals have no purpose behind them.

What I’d like you to do is take an evening to sit down and really think about your goals, both in the short and long-term. If you’re a business owner, focus on the problems that are affecting you and what you can do to resolve them. Parents should consider how they can go about improving to the benefit of their families.

The key thing to remember is that it’s not about the size of the goal. It’s all about putting the goal in place and understanding how it benefits you once achieved.

Remind Yourself

So you have your goal and a plan of action. However, you still find that your motivation tanks on off-days. This is where reminding yourself about what you want to achieve can really help out.

Write your goal down and make sure it is displayed somewhere prominent so that you can see it every day. Placing it on the fridge is a great idea, as everybody finds themselves standing in front of it at some point. A useful technique for me is to create a brainstorm diagram with my goal in the middle. Each of the points that come from that centre talk about how the goal I want to achieve will actually benefit me. For example, if I want to lose a little weight, these points could be “Increased Confidence”, “Feel More Attractive” or “Improved Health”. Consider how you can apply that thinking to your own goal.

Don’t Go It Alone

Everybody is different and some people feel more comfortable striving for their goals without relying on much outside input. However, this really limits the amount of information that you have at your disposal and cuts you off from sources of support that could give you that extra push when needed.

Now I’m not saying you need to become a social butterfly if that isn’t in your nature. But even something as simple as browsing this site to read about other people who have experienced similar issues, or asking a question of the British Toolbox community, can be enough to help you through. Just always remember that you are not alone. Help and support is out there, even if you have to search for it a little every so often.

Celebrate Your Successes

Reaching a milestone on the path to achieving your goal should always be treated as a reason for celebration. If you don’t take joy in your successes, you may find yourself mentally checking out when trying to reach the next milestone. After all, why bother if it doesn’t make you feel good?

When creating your plans, consider how you will reward yourself for an achievement. Perhaps you can go for a meal to your favourite restaurant with your family, or buy yourself something you’ve always wanted. Your celebration could even be as simple as giving yourself a day off. If it links to your success, this celebration will motivate you to push forward in your efforts.

Keep It Positive

The main issue that drains motivation is something negative occurring in your life. These moments are important, because every challenge that you confront offers you the chance to learn something new.

Try to keep yourself in that mindset and you will find that even the bad can be put to good use. Try to be positive with everything that you do and strive to make even the smallest improvement on your current situation every day. You will likely experience setbacks along the way, but don’t ever let that stop you from trying.