27 Smart and Simple Ways to
By Mohamed Gamal Updated June 30, 2021
“Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done,
it’s always your choice.”
“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither
does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.”
“I was thinking one day and I realized that if I just had
somebody behind me all the way to motivate me I could make
a big difference. Nobody came along like that so I just became
that person for myself.”
Some days you wake up motivated and ready to go. And some
days things feel heavy as you arise and it is hard to get going
and find that inner drive.
At least in my experience.
So over the past 10+ years I have found some simple and smart
strategies that work for me to get back into the right groove and
to get things done.
Here are 27 of my favorite tips and habits for doing just that.
You can watch this video : motivation
. Just get started and let the motivation catch up with
You don’t have to wait for motivation to get started. If you want
to work in a consistent way every day then sometimes you just
have to get going anyway.
And the funny thing is that after I have worked for a while
things feel easier and easier and more fun and the motivation
catches up with me.
2. Start small if big leads you to procrastinating.
If a project or task feels too big and daunting don’t let that lead
you into procrastination.
Instead, break it down into small steps – like just Motivate or
cleaning for 5 minutes – and then take just one of them to start
3. Start tiny if a small step still leads you to
If breaking it down and taking a small step still leads you to
procrastinating then go even smaller. Take just a tiny 1-2
minute step forward. That’s it.
Because the most important thing is to just get going and to
build momentum forward.
4. Reduce the daily distractions.
When you have easily accessible distractions all around you
then it becomes hard to focus.
So shut the door to your office. Put your smart phone in silent
mode at the other end of your work space or home. And use an
extension for your browser like StayFocusd to keep yourself on
5. Get accountability from the people in your life.
Tell your friends what you will do on social media, via phone or
in real life. Ask one or more of them to regularly check up on
you and your progress.
By doing this you’ll be a lot less likely to try to weasel out of
things or give up at the first obstacle.
6. Get motivation from the people in your life.
Spend less time with negative people who always look at the
dark or apathetic side of things.
And spend more of the time you have now freed up with
enthusiastic or motivated people and let their energy flow over
7. Get the motivation from people you don’t know.
Don’t limit yourself to just the motivation you can get from the
people closest you.
There is a ton of motivating quotes, books, podcasts, blogs and
success stories out there that you can tap into to up or renew
8. Play music that gives you energy.
One of the simplest things I do when I feel low in energy or
motivation is to play music that is upbeat and/or inspires me in
A break with a few songs or working while listening to them for
a while usually works well.
9. Find the optimism.
Pessimism can drain both your motivation and energy.
But the positive and constructive way of looking at things can on
the other hand energize and recharge your motivation.
So when you're in what looks like a negative situation ask
yourself questions like:
What’s one thing that’s good about this? And what’s one hidden
10. Be kind to yourself when you stumble.
It’s so easy to fall into the trap of beating yourself when you
stumble or fail.
But that don’t work that well in my experience. You just feel
worse and less motivated.
So try this the next time: be kind to yourself, nudge yourself
back on the path you were on and take one small step forward.
11. Be constructive about the failures.
To make your setbacks more valuable and less hurtful be
constructive about them. When you stumble ask yourself:
What is one thing I can learn from this setback?
Then keep that lesson in mind and take action on it to improve
what you do.
12. Compare yourself to yourself and see how far you
Instead of deflating yourself and your motivation by comparing
yourself to others who are so far ahead of you.
13. Compete in a friendly way.
When you’re in school or at work make it a friendly competition
with a friend to for example finish a boring or routine task first.
Just that element of competition tends to liven things up.
And if you want to you can also add a small prize for extra
motivation, like the winner getting a free ice cream or a beer
from the other person.
14. Remind yourself of why you are working toward
When you’re feeling unmotivated and low in energy it's easy to
lose sight of why you’re doing something.
So take 2 minutes and write down your top 3 reasons for doing
this work, getting an education, working out, saving that extra
money or something else.
Put that note where you can see it every day or keep it in your
smartphone for easy access when you need a motivational
15. Remind yourself of what you're moving away from.
You can also motivate yourself to get going again by looking at
the negative impact of staying on your current path.
What will the consequences be if I continue on this path for 1
more year? And if I do if for 5 more years?
I have found that this exercise has given me the kick-start I
needed many times in the past years.
16. Be grateful for what you got.
When motivation is running low then it’s easy to start seeing
your life and the aspects of it through a negative lens.
To put your focus on what you still have and who you are – and
to recharge with positivity and motivation
– ask yourself a
What are 3 things I sometimes take for granted but can be
grateful for in my life?
My answers would, for example, be a roof over my head, clean
water and not having to go hungry.
17. Mix things up.
A rut will kill motivation. So mix things up. Make a competition
out of a task with yourself or with someone else.
When you work out vary what you do instead of going through
the motions. Listen to music and podcasts that you usually don’t
New input and variation tends to be a good way to keep the
motivation up (or to recharge it).
18. Declutter your workspace.
Take a couple of minutes to clean it up.
I find that having an uncluttered and minimalistic workspace
helps me to think more clearly and I feel more focused and
ready to tackle the next task (or small step).
19. Reduce your to-do list to just one item.
An over-stuffed to-do list can be a real motivation killer.
So try reducing your current to-do list to just one item. The one
that’s most important to you right now or perhaps the one
you've been procrastinating on for way too long.
Then get started by taking a big, small or tiny step.
And have another list tucked away somewhere where you can’t
see it with other tasks to do later on.
20. Don’t forget about the breaks.
Few things can in my experience drain the daily motivation like
just working non-stop.
Instead, work for 45 minutes each hour and use the rest for a
break where you eat a snack, get out for some fresh air or do a
bit of stretching.
You’ll – perhaps somewhat counter-intuitively – get more done
in a day and week and do work of higher quality because your
energy, focus and motivation will simply last longer.
21. Adjust your goal size.
If a big goal in your life feels overwhelming set a smaller goal to
find your motivation again.
And if a smaller goal doesn’t seem inspiring try to aim higher
and make it bigger goal and see how that affects your
Working out doesn’t just affect your body. I find that just 20-30
minutes of lifting free weights releases inner tensions and stress
and makes me feel more focused once again.
23. Take 2 minutes to look back at your successes.
Close your eyes and let the memories of your biggest successes
– no matter in what part of your life – wash over you. Let those
most positive memories boost your motivation.
24. Reward yourself and celebrate your successes.
If you’re looking forward to a nice reward that you’re getting
yourself after you’re done with a task or a project then your
motivation tends to go up.
If you celebrate a success in some other way by for example by
taking 1 minute to appreciate what you did or by telling
someone about your success then that also usually recharges
motivation and positivity.
So dangle those carrots and celebrate to keep your motivation
25. Do a bit of research before you get started.
Learning from people who have gone where you want to go and
done what you want to do can help you to avoid pitfalls. And to
give you a realistic time-table for success.
This is important to not get demotivated when things aren’t
happening as fast you had wished.
26. Take a 2 minute meditation break.
When my mind is a bit tired or perhaps even overloaded my
energy and motivation goes down. So in the afternoons – or
when needed – I tend to sit down with closed eyes and just
focus on my breathing for 2 minutes.
This clears my mind and releases inner tensions.
27. Go out in nature.
Few things give me as much new energy and motivation to take
on life as this does.
So I often go out for a walk in the woods or by the sea and I'm
just there in the moment with the nature, the fresh air and I
don't think about anything special.
Here’s the next step…
Now, you may think to yourself:
“This is really helpful information. But what’s the easiest way to
put this into practice and actually make a real change with my
Well, I’ve got something special for you…
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