how to get motivated

The 3 Most Emotional Ways to Getting Yourself Motivated

Doesn’t it suck to know that you lack motivation to actually do what you want to do?

You know you SHOULD do it, but yet, you can’t seem to ever get off your ass to start work.

Procrastination has become the ugliest word in your vocabulary.

The worst part is, nothing seems to work.

You read all the blogs on productivity and motivating yourself. You’ve gone through books. You’ve asked around for advice from friends or successful people.

You even FORCED yourself to work hard on something, but it only lasted for a while, and you’re back to square one, your stagnant state.

As such, you feel totally unproductive and even a sense of hopelessness as you’ve accomplished nothing.

Sounds like you?

Motivation can be hard.

It is. It really is.

“Just do it!” isn’t as simple as it sounds, as some people would like to put it (even as the only solution).

As much as you want to do what you’re set out to do, procrastination just seems to get in the way, even though you know what action it is you need to take.

In turn, the solution to motivation, or lack thereof is even more complicated as they can never empathize with you fully.

We think too much about the WORK!

Yup. We do.

The number one reason which pulls us down from setting off to start work is because we keep thinking about the work involved.

And when we think about the work, it subsequently affects our feelings towards the work and about ourselves.

So, with uninspired feelings and a sense of just feeling down and out, it’s no wonder we don’t ever feel like getting work done.

I call this the most emotional ways to getting yourself motivated because it’s about the feelings!

Check it out!

The most emotional ways to get yourself motivated:

1) Only focus on the feeling of the outcome.

Have you heard of the saying, “Do you want to be sore, or sorry later”?

It’s a quote to motivate people who into working out and pushing themselves in fitness.

It’s all about how you would feel later, regardless of how big the task at hand is.

When there’s something you need to do, only think about the feeling of success once it’s all done.

It’s totally up to you to feel happy, satisfied, accomplished or even excited.

And when you achieve any of those, you know it’s going to be worth it.

This is what I personally do when I got a task at hand. I only aim for the feeling I want, which is the only result I want.

2) Then, think of how these great feelings would make everything else better.

It will.

Look at it this way: If you don’t feel motivated enough to carry out your task, you’d feel lazy and lethargic. Sure, you may get to do what you want instead, like watching TV or playing video games, but the feelings accompanied with that would be bittersweet at best.

Get the task done, then go for a break and reward yourself with something you like. That would instantly make it all even better. Hell, even mundane activities like mindless surfing Facebook would seem rewarding then.

As you can see, it’s all about feeling again.

3) Get inspired.

When I feel unmotivated to do something, I simply tell myself not to do it at all.

Instead of moving forward, I stand still.

I actively then go around getting myself inspired.

Inspiration is totally free and is your best source of getting yourself pumped up, hyped, excited and basically just motivated.

So stand still. Don’t even think of the task then.

Go get yourself inspired. It’s pretty easy today with the internet. You can go to YouTube, literally type in, “Inspiration” and you’ve a wealth of videos that can motivate you.

With inspiration, comes better feelings, and with that, you’ll be more in tuned to actually get stuff done!

It’s all about the feelings.

At the end of the day, work is always work. It’s not meant to be fun all the time, even though it can be.

It’s your own responsibility to decide how you want to feel and also to get things done.

So again, I say just focus on the feelings around the work i.e. before and after and how it in turns makes you feel.

Hope this helps.


Hey Pick The Brain readers!

Another reason why people are unmotivated to get things done is because we care too much about what others think.

I’ve got a solution for that.

It’s all in this free email course I created to help you guys block out the noise. Nearly 3,000 people have gone through it! Learn how to:

Gain the confidence to do what you love only

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This course is available through this link to Alden-Tan. Get it now!



21 Responses to The 3 Most Emotional Ways to Getting Yourself Motivated

  1. Sound’s like emotions really matters. But what if you don’t really care emotionally and you have to do ‘something’ that you really don’t like to do? How would you encourage yourself to do it though?

  2. Rotem Cohen says:

    There is always a reason to get it done. Sometimes the reason is to avoid a negative consequence. It could be anything from loosing your job to getting a bad look from your spouse. ( it’s the “stick”, rather than the carrot.)

    With that said, you can almost always find some positive reason to do something, even if it’s just by making it more fun to do…

    For example: washing the dishes might seem like a tedious and boring task, until you treat it like a break time for your mind. You can stop thinking about serious stuff for a few minutes, maybe even play some music in the background and… enjoy it! (I’m sure you can think of better examples.)

    Hope this helps.

    (Alden, I think it’s a short and sweet article with some simple and sound advice on how to overcome procrastination. Thanks.)

  3. I like your take on motivation, but I would be careful with your third point — Get Inspired. The last thing I would ever tell a chronic procrastinator is to get on Youtube to find motivation.

    As a former chronic procrastinator, I can tell you that Youtube, and the internet in general, is no place to frequent when you’re feeling uninspired. Sure, you might gain some fist pumping motivation, but you won’t use it to get stuff done — you’ll look for the next video or article to keep that emotion going. You’ll repeat that pattern until the high is gone — then you’re back to doing nothing.

    The only thing that worked for me to beat procrastination was to just stop relying on motivation entirely. Motivation will always be fleeting and unreliable. Persistence is what we need to get stuff done. Learn to cultivate persistence and you’ll see just how productive you can be . . . even when you’re feeling uninspired.


  4. Joshua Abraham says:

    I’ve been reading Antidote: Happiness for People who can’t stand positive thinking and it’s help me understand that we’ve become to reliant on the feelings of being motivated. It doesn’t take the feelings to actually do something, it takes willpower to actually do something. As one quote says: “Inspiration is for amateurs: the rest of us just show up and work.” Many great writers just wrote for a period of time per day regardless of how they felt. A little bit more of this is what is needed.

  5. Pingback: The 3 Most Emotional Ways to Getting Yourself Motivated | Time Management Magazine

  6. Another way to get motivated is to chunk everything up, when we think about how much work is involved we usually chunk everything down into micro tasks and the sheer volume of micro tasks overwhelms us.

    Chunk everything back up into less tasks, this will seem easier to occumplish and it will be easier to motivate yourself to do it

  7. I asked a mentor once how do I turn a half-hearted wish into deep conviction and now I see that there are a lot of things I have done because I thought I SHOULD because that is what I was taught being a responsible adult meant.  Now I allow more time for discovery and play it naturally yields greater motivation.  Who knew? Lol.

  8.  Great question.  I think when we are doing MORE of what we do love, we begrudge what may not be exciting a little less.  BUT I think it is so important to discover and do more of what requires little ‘motivation’ on your part.  Best wishes, my friend.

  9. Anna says:

    Nice tips! I will definitely try them in reading for math exam 😛 ( despite I can’t imagine how it is possible to get inspired with math =/ )

  10. Alden Tan says:

    That’s great Anna! Rock on. 

  11. Alden Tan says:

    Just be natural then Cassandra! Go with the flow, be natural, bask in the “glory”. 

  12. Alden Tan says:

    Nice! Thanks Darren. 

  13. Alden Tan says:

    Nice quotes man! That sounds like a cool book Joshua. 

    I think at the end of the day, we still got to take action and do the work. 

  14. Alden Tan says:

    Hey Trevor,

    Then I guess you got to make sure not to get sucked into social media. It’s helpful, but can be a real distraction.

    Persistence is awesome, that’s a great way of putting it. The journey can be your motivation. 

  15. Alden Tan says:

    I’d say then just don’t think about it. Don’t compare the situation with anything else since it’ll lose out anyway.

    Just go with the flow and accept it for what it is. 

  16. Alden Tan says:

    Thanks Rotem!

    And I like your tip as well. Don’t compare it with anything else. Comparing things you don’t even want to do with things you want to do… well no-brainer right there. 

  17. Ryan Brown says:

    Great great tips. I struggle so hard with motivation sometimes to the point where I sit tere staring for hours knowing I need to write but no words appear. Focus is my issue, so I’ve cut out distractions but that doesn’t always help.

    Lately I’ve been trying to think of the end result, and what it will do for people, which helped me with my post about Death being my travel inspiration. Thanks!

  18. Jorge Blanco says:

    When I feel unmotivated to do something, I simply tell myself not to do it at all.  – Wise choice. If we do things unmotivated, we won’t be able to produce a very good outcome. Hence, better spend that time motivating yourself and accomplish the task later than risk getting mediocre or poor output.

  19. StellarHopes says:

    I really want to thank you for this great article! I’m a university full-time student who constantly works hard to get A’s, and now I suddenly feel unmotivated. I looked everywhere and tried everything to be motived, but couldn’t. Until now, I feel super motivated, energized again, and happy! And you are right, we should think of the ends (outcome), and not the means. I do think a LOT about my studies, but that’s because I’m afraid of the future. Now, it’s not the case any more! I will do what I love no matter one, and when I will feel tired, I’ll stop, take a deep breath, get inspired, and then jump again! :) Thank you so much!!! 

  20. StellarHopes says:

    Hey Trevor, I agree with you. I spent these last few days unmotivated, searching through YouTube & Facebook to get myself a bit energy, but turned out I didn’t find anything at all! Like you said”you’ll look for the next video or article to keep that emotion going. You’ll repeat that pattern until the high is gone — then you’re back to doing nothing.” And that’s what really happened. But when It comes to me, I think both, persistence & motivation are the key. Not either alone, but both. Motivation is like the reason why I wake up every day, energized, and ready to do whatever it takes to reach my ambitions. And persistence is the reason why I keep working hard & keep focusing on achieving those dreams. Just a mix of both, right? 
    Cheers to you too! :)

  21. Hi Stellar,

    You are right, it’s best to have a mix of both. Here’s how I look at it: motivation is great at getting things started, but it’s persistence that sees us through.

    That’s why I so often caution against relying on motivation as your main driver of productivity — motivation is just too fleeting. It will love you for the night, then leave you in the morning. Persistence will never leave your side.

    So when you are feeling motivated, by all means use it. But you had better cultivate persistence if you want to make long term change.


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