Working hard on getting your tasks and goals completed? Don’t forget to reward yourself when you accomplishment even small steps towards your goals.
We all have things to do, and there always seems there is an endless task list. We know there is a reason we are working so hard, but we also need to celebrate successes along the way to avoid just working for work’s sake. Sure, the boss will always have plenty for you to do. Sometimes it is a challenge to be excited about the work but it really isn’t hard to feel good about the process when we recognize our victories, even in small ways. For example, take any goal we have in mind. For the purposes of this discussion, we are going to have a goal of becoming a successful writer. The title or the project isn’t really the point here, we are going to focus on the process and a goal meaningful to you and your situation.
First, we have to define what we are trying to achieve, this is the first step in identifying where we are and where we want to be in the “end state.” We need know to know what it will take to become a successful writer and list the steps to get there. Just as any great goal-setting methodology will demonstrate, you just break down the problem into smaller, manageable steps you can tackle to make progress towards the goal. You now have big blocks to show you a roadmap for progress toward completing your goal. In project management, we call these milestones. For every milestone, there is an associated set of tasks to check off in a certain order so that we can complete each milestone. Each set of tasks gets you closer to your desired state; to be a successful writer, right?
Here is one thing most project management methods DON’T teach you. It can be very difficult to stay motivated. In fact, many burn out and lose momentum because all they feel they are doing is working. Again, working just to be working is not the goal; it is getting to where we want to be. If we are just working to be working, then working turns to drudgery and drudgery turns to burnout. One can quickly lose sight of the original goal; in this case, to be a successful writer or whatever your goal happens to be.
Would it make a difference if you added something different to help you stay focused and motivated? The next time you have big projects or goals add an incentive to complete the next milestone (or completing a particularly difficult task). It doesn’t have to be anything huge, something small like a favorite cup of coffee or some other small gift to yourself. Nothing says it has to be elaborate and not for every tasks, but for major checkpoints or exceptionally difficult tasks along the way. This can be your own little secret, and no one even has to know, just you. Make it an incentive to stay on track and this will go a long way to your happiness and it will help you enjoy the road to success.
What techniques do you use to stay motivated?