I love winning.
I sense you do too!
I have compiled some “hacks” which have helped me along the way to get things done.
So, play along.
1. Use the “orgasmic rush” or “motivational wave”
One of the most important “hacks” that I ever learned for achieving my goals was taking advantage of the “orgasmic rush.”
“Orgasmic rush” are those moments where we feel really good and inspired to take action on a list of to-dos. Remember the last time you cleaned your whole bedroom? That’s a motivational wave.
Use these “motivational waves to your advantage…rather than getting really motivated and falling back into our old ways of doing things a few days later.”
Years ago I wanted to stop taking sugar in my tea. So when this motivation was at its peak. I set up boundaries, a system. I made sure that I was taking my tea with someone who was as well not taking sugar. It became no-brainier to make tea without sugar whenever I was on the table because there was no sugar on the table.
A few years ago, I was trying to form a writing habit. The problem I had was that I’d start an article and never finish it. I would lose inspiration easily. So, the next time I was feeling really motivated to write an article, I built a system. It looked like this: I put my laptop, notepad and pen next to my bed and close by always during the day. At night when an idea would come I would wake up jot it down. By the time my writing time came I would go to the notepad and follow through on the notes I have written and expanded them. I then started finishing off the books and articles with much ease.
These types of systems guarantee success. THAT’S what you should use your motivation for — to set up fail-proof systems.
That way you’ll follow through even when you’re no longer motivated.
Take-way on this:
- When you’re feeling “motivated” either right now or later on. Use that to your advantage.
- Draw out a list of everything you need to get in order to accomplish your goal.
- Structure it out. A rough outline of your fail-proof system that’ll help you follow through consider above examples
Don’t let that motivation go down the drain. Capture your rough ideas whenever your motivation is at a peak.
2. Use little wins, then go big later on
When you’re starting out with any of your goals — like exercising — it’s better to actually start than to dream about starting forever. With exercising, that means actually walking one kilometer per week is better than planning to run three kilometers 3x per week… and never running at all. Each kilometer you walk represents a “little win” for your goal.
And getting a lot of those little wins is what helps you succeed. Because with each little milestone you achieve, you’re actually doing what you set out to do…not just hoping things work out.
Take-way on this:
- Instead of planning to do 100 push-ups per day to get back in shape, just do two push=ups a day to get started.
- Instead of thinking you have to floss all your teeth, just focus on one tooth a day to get things going.
You can ramp up from there. But you don’t want to fail from the start.
Here’s how to use this:
Think of some of the goals you’d like to accomplish. Then break those down into the tiniest steps you can imagine. And I mean seriously tiny: 2 push-ups per day, 1 tooth, 1 glass of water…however small you need. Make it something you KNOW you can do.
Draft up a plan for how you’ll do this for 2 weeks. Once you hit this target, then you can consider expanding.
But remember, big goals are accomplished with tiny steps.
How can you start taking some of those tiny steps today?
3. Put it on your calendar
Imagine you’re going for boxing against Anthony Joshua.
You have the best gloves, the most expensive pair of athletic shorts, a fancy headband, and the greatest shoes in the world. And he has no shoes, ripped shorts, and a dress shirt.
Who would win?
Anthony Joshua, duh.
It sounds ridiculous, right? But we play this same game against motivation every day.
The tools don’t matter as much as we think.
Novices love to focus on productivity hacks, apps, and tools. It’s easy — and frankly, more fun — to play with new shiny tools than to simply do what works.
But usually, the fundamentals — things like a simple calendar, pen, and paper — work just as well if not better than some app.
Execution is more important than the tactic itself.
Take-way from this:
- Decide ahead of time and map out your schedule for the week either on paper or in a simple calendar system.
- Put your baby steps goals into your calendar system.
- Then, set an alert in your calendar or on your phone to review this every week.
If you keep thinking ahead, you’ll never be caught off-guard or pressed for time. Those tiny improvements every week will add up. And it won’t be long before you’re crushing every goal you set.
Learning how to set goals like this increases your chances of making your habits stick.
Go for it!