Why is it sometimes SO difficult to stay motivated?
As SalesPeople and Entrepreneurs we are only as effective as we are energized and yet the reasons to let motivation
slip seem to be legion:
- It’s too nice out, I want to go outside!
- It’s awful out, so dreary…
- I am WAY to energized to sit in this office!
- I am exhausted…
- I made a killing in commission last month, I can take a break!
- I did lousy last month, how can I keep doing this?
What do you notice about that list?
The stimulus isn’t the de-motivator. As a matter of fact, one person’s reason to be unmotivated seems to be another’s to BE motivated!
Ultimately, it isn’t the stimulus, it’s the person that is or isn’t motivated. Too hot, too cold, too this, too that. It isn’t important. People are motivated or they are not.
So how do we pick up our motivation when we, “aren’t feeling it?”
Let’s get after some answers…
1. Ask Better Questions!
Questions can doom or deliver motivation:
Garbage: How quickly can I finish this call list?
Gold: How can I maximize the likelihood of qualifying a prospect on this call list?
Garbage: How quickly can I get my sales rep through this training?
Gold: How quickly can I make my sales rep productive?
Garbage: Why can’t I lose any weight?
Gold: How AWESOME will I feel when I get to my goal fitness level?
How we phrase our questions largely dictates our outcome by manipulating how we FEEL about the event. If we try to use negative reenforcement on ourselves (seriously, what kind of masochistic garbage is THAT!) we feel badly about the endeavor. It’s like ANTI-motivation. Don’t do that!
2. Break It Down!
Nothing, and I mean NOTHING is worse than staring a giant job in the face. The surest way to erode whatever motivation you have is to task yourself with a seemingly insurmountable task. So why do it?
When you have a large job ahead of you:
- 5-day call blitz!
- Re-tooling all of your company’s marketing material and sales swag with the new company logo.
- Switching your house over from summer mode to winter mode (I know it’s not sales related but man I HATE that job!)
Your tendency (if you’re anything like me!) is to put it off. This helps nothing, and I know this (and you do too!) but we still do it, don’t we?
The easiest way to avoid, well, avoiding is to break the job down. Don’t look at the big picture, the big job. Break that job down into it’s constituent parts and focus on knocking those parts out one at a time. It is far more gratifying to get a sense of accomplishment from several small wins leading to the big win of completion than it is to look at one giant job that feels like it will never end.
Trust me on this one, I know! 😉
3. Have A Goal WITH A Reward!
People use many different tools here:
- Vision Boards
- Written short, mid, and longterm goals (this REALLY isn’t optional!)
- Sharing (publicly committing) to specific benchmarks: 2o lbs by August!, $15k GP by December, 3 new customers a month!, You get the idea. If you SHARE it that public commitment locks you in and adds incentive to succeed.
- Morning Rituals
There truly are scores of ways to do this, but the key is actually DOING it.
PROTIP: The goal needs to be aggressive enough to stretch you, but something you believe you can achieve. If you don’t believe you can achieve the goal you won’t truly commit and if you don’t truly commit you are wasting your time. Also, the reward has to be in line with the goal. Rewarding yourself by taking a week’s vacation in Vegas because you got a new customer is probably wildly disproportionate to the accomplishment!
Pick one job. One task. One big, ugly thing that you are putting off and put it through the 3-step process I outlined above. I am certain that, once done, it won’t look nearly so big and ugly!
Question: What have YOU done to get “unstuck” when you’ve felt your motivation abandoning you in the past? ~Share in the comments below!
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