The sprouting of broccoli and Brussels sprouts on my window sill prompted me to write this “motivational goals” post. I don’t have green thumbs and have not devoted much time in the yard. It all started with a few conversations with friends; as I was challenged, my husband and I decided to experiment and see if we would have any luck growing our own vegetables. Truthfully speaking, I did not have much expectation, but I have diligently watered and checked on the seed growing trays regularly. A week plus into it, I noticed tiny little sprouts started breaking through the soil. As more sprouts popped up, the possibility of having some homegrown veggies really excited me, and I now am totally committed to caring for my window garden – with great motivation and enthusiasm!

What is motivation?

APA Dictionary of Psychology defines motivation as the impetus that gives purpose or direction to behavior and operates in humans at a conscious or unconscious level, as well as a person’s willingness to exert physical or mental effort in pursuit of a goal or outcome. I like what Lou Holtz, a former American football player, coach and analyst said, “Ability is what you are capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.” Motivation drives everything we do.

There are 2 types of motivations; one internal or intrinsic and the other one external or extrinsic. Using my potting as an example, my external motivation comes from a possible future harvest and compliments from my friends, while my internal motivation comes from conquest of the unknown and a sense of accomplishment.

Importance of motivation

  • Motivation stretches and encourages you to grow

I had zero knowledge about gardening to start with. The motivation and my “can do” attitude triggered me to educate myself via online resources, and receive encouragement from a few online veggie gardening communities I’ve joined. As I see tiny progress from those tiny seeds, I’ve become more inspired and enthusiastic waiting for the unknown surprises in the next few days. Finding ways to stay motivated will help you overcome challenges while marching toward your future growth and achievement.

  • Motivation increases your commitment, productivity and happiness

Have you noticed that when you are motivated, obstacles become just another thing to check off in order to get to the next level, and commitment to whatever the task at hand also becomes much easier and more natural? Higher commitment yields better performance and productivity, which in return brings more happiness and fulfillment in life.

Do you see it? When you are motivated and committed, you perform better. And when you see the outcome of it, you feel happier and more fulfilled which brings more motivation in you. It’s like you are creating a positive loop which gives you more motivation.

(Motivation => Commitment => Higher Performance and Productivity => Happiness and Fulfillment => Motivation)

How to ignite your motivation to achieve your goals?

  • Identify and connect to your why and your value

Simon Sinek’s “Start with why” absolutely brings out one of the key elements to set motivational goals. When you communicate or commit to your WHY from the inside out, you are speaking directly into the part of the brain that controls your behavior. Your motivation won’t last long if you aren’t clear, or when you cannot articulate the WHY. Connecting your why with your value is a powerful tool for motivation. 

  • Leverage on your strengths

I believe in the strength-based approach! Strength is the ability to provide consistent and near-perfect performance in any given activities. Focusing on fixing your weakness prevents failure, but building on top of your known strengths leads to success. Focusing on and cultivating your strengths will get you furtherer.

  • Make your dream board visible

The power of your visual sense will keep you motivated and help you focus on your dreams. Find visual images that represent your dreams and display them so you can see them every day. I first posted my dream board on my office wall about 20 years ago. It served as a visual reminder everyday as I walked into my office. It not only helped me stay focused on the goals I aimed to accomplish but also helped me achieve many of them. 

  • Make a plan and take action

Once you set your motivational goals, you need to come up with  a plan, take action and execute your plan accordingly. You may course correct along the way, but having a map is like having a compass, you know you are heading toward the right direction. And even a small achievement will get you motivated and keep going.

  • Celebrate the progress

Seeing progress is a great motivator in itself. Make sure to pause, acknowledge and appreciate not only the result, but also your on-going effort. Remember to celebrate and reward yourself each time when you reach a milestone.

  • Do it with others

Share your goals and progress with someone you can trust and gain encouragement from. A cheerleader or two by your side will help you continue moving forward and offer you supportive partners who can boost your motivation as the journey ahead is never promised to be rosy and easy.

How does coaching keep you motivated?

Through a trustworthy relationship, thought-provoking conversations and processes, you will gain clarity with your WHY, know your strengths, identify your dreams and set a plan to move forward. Coaching provides clarity and focus for what you want to achieve, accountability to promote ownership, and confidence to overcome fears and obstacles. In a healthy coaching relationship, you will have a guide, partner and cheerleader to walk through the journey toward your dreams together! Most importantly, a good coach will inspire you from within, draw out your hidden passion, and help you stay motivated to reach the purposes of your life.

So, coming back to my new gardening project. Looking at the newly popped up sprouts, I know there is still a lot to be done and not without problems or challenges. It’s the imagination and excitement of the future harvest along with my “I can do it” attitude that keep me motivated and going. What are some of your dreams? And where are your motivations to reach those dreams? Schedule a call with me, and let’s take that step into your great future ahead.