YOUR DAILY KICK-START
One of the most powerful additions to my routine has been my daily kick-start. I didn’t deliberately plan to create a motivational kick-start, it simply emerged as I started adding positive habits, which eventually formed a chain. This chain became a sort of motivational top up, which often lasted the entire day. The state of mind we are in, greatly influences our behavior, emotions, thoughts and mindset throughout our lives, so how powerful would it be, to have control over your state each and every day?
Many people will tell you that motivation doesn’t last and in some ways they are right, but in other ways they are wrong. Motivation and the routine associated can form a habit, which itself can influence your brain chemistry in a positive way. Once this habit has been fully integrated, then it can be a constant source of positive drive and energy.
Here is an example of a kick-start habit from my life- I was trying to move forward and really be conscious of what I was doing in my life. I was always looking for strategies to remain motivated and focused, so I started applying my ideas for the purpose of maintaining a positive state and to avoid my past negative automatic behaviours or thoughts.
The first thing I did was to download about 20 motivational speeches from Youtube. Every day I listened to them briefly in the car and whenever I had time. As soon as I arrived home, I would go for a run and during the run I would listen to the motivational speakers. By the end of my run I was pumped with endorphins from the exercise and felt empowered by the speeches I had listened to. Exercise, reinforced by the motivational speeches, immediately placed me in a powerful psychological position to engage with my goals. After the first 2 weeks I became addicted to this feeling and it started to feel weird if I missed my daily run. This made running so much easier too, because I focused so much on what I was hearing instead of any physical weakness or pain. I had unintentionally coupled two very compelling actions, which had a powerful effect on my state of mind and physiology. The more often I followed the routine of running whilst listening to motivational speakers the more reliable my positive mindset became.
Think of motivation like the fuel you put in your car, yes it does run out, but it can also be topped up again. Once you understand what actions or habits influence your state of mind in a positive manner, then you will have motivation and positive energy that can be tapped into whenever it is needed most.
This is just one example, but the effect on my state of mind was profound. It kept me pumped, motivated and conscious when most people struggle to be, which is generally right after work when the couch and television are calling.
Why do you think motivational music and motivational speakers exist? It's because they both work.
What makes a Kick-start strategy so effective, is the fact that all of the components of your personal kick-start have a positive physical, emotional, mental and physiological effect on you as an individual.
We are basically deliberately engaging our brain and body’s natural response in order to produce a positive effect. This effect can keep you motivated and conscious long enough for you to make some real progress and that progress will in-turn push you further ahead. So have a think about what drives you forward and what sparks your emotions in a positive manner.
The following are suggestions to help you get started.
1. Music. Something that motivates you and pumps you up.
2. Motivational speeches from people you relate to.
3. Motivational video clips
4. Exercise or stretching.
5. A good chat with a loved one, friend or coach.
6. The right meal. A small piece of chocolate can have an effect on your neurochemistry. (not advisable if you are trying to lose weight)
7. Meditation or mindfulness practice.
8. Although it may not be convenient, sometimes helping someone in some way or giving where you can.
9. If you need to, in the beginning set a habit alarm. This will keep you aware of the habits you are trying to introduce.
10. Think of how you could use dead time to create a positive state of mind e.g. listening to an audiobook while on public transport or sitting in traffic.
There are more ideas out there; it’s up to you to find them.
Motivation exists, you just need to find out what works for you and top it up as often as possible. It's all about finding the right set of ingredients to manipulate your brain chemistry, which will improve your level of motivation.