stop slackin' & get crackin'
Lately I've been checking out a lot of blogs on motivation. To keep positivity in our lives and to stay focused on the present moment, we need to be motivated. One of the key pieces of advice that I've come across over and over again in relation to motivation is: do something. Yes, it's simple, but it is so, so true. The best way to motivate yourself on a project or a task is to get started. Even if it's a small step, get the ball rolling, get going.
Yesterday this quote was delivered to my in-box from Real Simple: "It doesn't matter how the paint is put on, as long as something is said." Jackson Pollock, the speaker of this quote, had a great point and that is: we need to take action. Just as we are sometimes afraid of happiness, we are sometimes afraid to do something. Maybe we think we won't do a great job. Maybe we're frightened by what others might think. Maybe we're too uncertain about our own abilities. Whatever the excuse is, forget it! Rather than dwell on the negative aspects of what could happen, embrace the positivity of taking action.
Whatever you create or do may not be absolute perfection, but it will be something. In order to truly motivate yourself and encourage yourself, you have to do things. You cannot just sit around and say, "Yeah, I'm a pretty good writer. I love writing" and not write anything (yes, I've done this). You have to take action.
Last fall, I was feeling out of sorts in the writing realm. I knew I wanted to write a novel, but I couldn't figure out what I wanted to write about. I had ideas -- lots of ideas -- but no motivation to start any of them. Lucky for me, I came across National Novel Writing Month. Every November, people all over the world spend the month writing a novel of 50,000 words. What a perfect way to get motivated, I thought to myself. Even if the novel wasn't a bestseller, at least I would have written something.
So I got to work on November 1st. I wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote. I didn't edit. I didn't think what I was writing might not be good. I didn't judge myself. I just set out to complete a task -- writing a novel -- and I didn't question it. And guess what? By November 30th, I had written 50,000 words. No, they weren't perfect, but they were there, lighting up my computer screen and telling me that, yes, I could do this.
Sometimes we have to force ourselves into it. We need to make ourselves take action. Not everyone may be lucky enough to come across something as fitting as I did, but you can create your own motivation. Create your own month of pressure. It feels great to have something tangible to work with (though, I must admit, I've taken my time getting around to editing that novel of mine...). I have a starting point now, something I feel very positive about.
So turn up the heat, put the pressure on, force yourself to take action. Of all the blogs and articles I've read on motivation, the message is this: do something. For some more motivation, turn on Britney Spears' "Do Somethin'" and check out these awesomely motivating sites:
- Motivate Thyself
- The Change Blog
- Learn This
- Put Things Off
- Zen Habits
- Productivity 501
- Rock Your Day
Hopefully you will find one (or all!) of these sites inspiring. Since I've just started looking around at the topic of motivation, I'm sure I probably missed some critical sites so feel free to post any I might have missed in the comments section. Now, stop slacking and get cracking!
This is sooo true! I have a very hard time getting motivated, and many times lately I've given up before I even start because I figure I won't follow through or it will be too hard or I won't be consistent. But if I could just force my way past that lack of faith and get started, I think the momentum would carry me forward to creating a habit and I'll actually find that whatever it is, is something I can indeed do and like to do! I have a few things I need to stop imagining or talking about and start doing!
I know almost all those sites you mentioned. :)
Posted by: steph | April 07, 2009 at 08:07 PM
Steph - I think a lot of people have the same problem (including me). Sometimes it's easier not to start something because we think we won't finish or won't do a great job (or any other excuse we can possibly think of). Doing something is the way to go!
Posted by: positively present | April 08, 2009 at 04:34 PM
I have read this sentence somewhere, and i have typed it in Bold, posted it on my screen in front of my eyes, all the time:
A good something is better than a perfect nothing!
It is helping me a lot to finish my novel!
Posted by: Ehab | April 25, 2009 at 04:42 AM
Ehab - You are SO right. I'm a bit of a perfectionist at times so maybe I should post this quote up and I'll finish my novel! :) Thanks for stopping by PP.
Posted by: positively present | April 25, 2009 at 07:26 AM