Productivity isn't about how many hours you work. It's about what you get done during those limited hours - Tom DeMarco
I was an unmotivated mess of a person. I slacked off left, right, and center. My productivity level was basically zilch, I felt like a complete waste of space. That's not because I wasn't intelligent or talented (I definitely am) — but because I didn't have any structure.
Motivation — that's all it takes to be productive: a desire to do so. But this is something we all seem to start off with at birth and slowly lose as we get older. And, as you can see from my story above, it's not just a psychological phenomenon. It's a neurological one too.
Motivation is a chemical process in the brain. When we're motivated, our brains release dopamine, which makes us feel good and gives us the energy to get things done. But when our motivation runs out, we don't have any of that dopamine left and so we feel tired and lethargic instead.
In a nutshell, the possible 3 triggers to a goal: Idea 💡, Motivation 🏋🏻♂️ and Action 🎯, should look something like the above.
An Idea is the trigger that starts the process in your mind and you'll never act on it unless you're motivated to do it. Ideas can be triggered by external factors like inspiration, reading, realization, or even comparisons. This phase is very notorious and can happen anytime and anywhere, especially when you are not looking for it, right?
Motivation is the trigger that moves you to take action. An idea may turn into your goal, irrespective of the timeframe. For example, I realized a few months ago that I must be active and should hit the gym at least 3 times a week. My Motivation was my poor health and I came to this realization with the help of some external factors.
Action is the trigger that puts your idea into practice. For example, My action was to get some kind of physical activity at least 3 times a week, and consistently.
Consistency requires commitment and dedication that can only come from within yourself, i.e., Motivation. Are you starting to see a pattern?
The idea only happens once and will be outta the picture sooner than you realize. The paradox is that your motivation fuels your actions, and in turn, your actions fuel your motivation, as shown in the picture. It’s like an infinite loop, right? But, the motivation will fade away with time, and this will impact your actions as well. And before you know it, you will fall behind in your commitments and goals.
So, if you want to stay productive, as well as motivated, it is important to constantly feed your motivation. It’s simpler than it seems and super effective! And this is how we can fuel our motivation day in and day out!
The best way to do this is by setting short - and long-term goals for yourself. This will help you plan ahead and stay on track with what you want to accomplish- by breaking it down into weekly or even daily smaller chunks. The short-term goals must be simple, achievable, and easily trackable.
For example, a long-term goal could be to grow impressions on one's blog tenfold in two months; the short-term goals could be broken down into consistently putting out blogs five times per week, posting summaries of those blogs on other social media, and linking the blog in the comments section.
When you achieve your smaller goals weekly/daily, this will help to fuel your motivation and you can tap from that motivation to take action on your longer-term goals. This will lead to consistency and dedication without spreading yourself too thin.
This methodology can be applied to any type of goal, whether it be long-term or short-term. As long as the goal is trackable with a system, realistic, and can be broken down into daily or weekly goals, this method will work.
Allowing yourself to celebrate smaller achievements, gives you a chance to see how far you’ve come and the work you’re doing to go even further. Embracing the journey (whatever it is) gives more fuel to your motivations.
Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort. – Paul J. Meyer
Here is a little TLDR;
Create a system
Create measurable and realistic short- and long-term goals
Hit your daily/weekly goals
Celebrate small achievements
Share it with the world if needed
Look at how far you've come
Most important of all, embrace the journey
If you are still here and learned something from this article, please do share your thoughts and share it with anyone who'd benefit from this. Thank you for your time! 🔥