What you will learn from reading this article:
- Understand why you procrastinate and keep putting things off
- Discover how to increase your willpower and get motivated
- The 3 questions to ask yourself to identify what motivates you
- The fundamentals of Tony Robbins’ proven time management system (RPM)
- Access to the tools you need to start working with RPM and getting your desired results
Do you struggle with how to get motivated? Are you a self-identified procrastinator? Have you tried countless time management methods, but just end up creating endless lists instead of actually getting things done? Sick of always feeling like you do things at the last minute? Do you lack motivation to get tasks started, let alone finished?
The problem with many time management systems is that they only tackle the question “What do I need to do?” When you shift your focus to understanding what you really want, you’ll find how to get motivated along with time you didn’t know you had. You’ll learn how to be resourceful even when you lack resources. Welcome to RPM, the Rapid Planning Method. With this powerful tool, you can finally learn how to be motivated and how to stop procrastinating.
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What exactly is motivation?
Motivation is one of those words that’s used constantly, but few know what it really means. Motivation is not just about having the energy you need to get through your daily to-do list. It’s the internal process that incites action for you to move toward a certain goal. If you have trouble with how to be motivated, it could have nothing to do with your drive, your energy level or your talent. Instead, it could be that you have the wrong goal, are not emotionally connected to your goal or you have not defined your goal well enough to develop a relationship with it.
Internal issues that block motivation
If you think you are a procrastinator, it’s likely that you are experiencing some inner blocks that prevent you from getting the clarity you need to get motivated.
One of the most common internal blocks to motivation is limiting beliefs. Beliefs are the thoughts and feelings we assume to be true that guide us toward (or away from) our goals. A limiting belief that holds you back is one that is negative, such as “I’ll never be fit because my whole family is unhealthy,” or “I was a bad student in high school so there’s no reason for me to get a college degree.” Even if you have the goal of becoming physically healthier or going back to school, these underlying beliefs are getting in your way.
In these situations, you’re not looking for answers as to how to get motivated – it’s figuring out how to change these beliefs and remove your inner block. If you’re having a hard time with motivation in a certain area, take some time to examine your beliefs. Which are negative? Are those beliefs really true? What can you do to disprove them to yourself so you can make them positive, empowering beliefs?
Tony often says that, “People are not lazy. They have impotent goals – that is, goals that do not inspire them.” Many people fill their to-do list with “shoulds.” I should lose weight. I should save money. I should change my career path. They make a lackluster attempt to exercise and eat healthy, stop wasting money or look for a new job, but never seem to be able to follow through. That’s because their goals do not inspire them. To truly get motivated, they need to turn their “shoulds” into “musts.”
Sound familiar? Start by examining your blueprint – your plan for your life. Are you going after what you really want, or what your family, friends or society tells you to want? Make sure that your goals inspire you. Determine your purpose in life and connect your goals back to it. Finally, raise your standards. Accept nothing less than success, and you’ll be amazed at the results.
Where focus goes, energy flows. If you don’t have focus, your energy will not flow to the right place. Tony says, “One reason so few of us achieve what we truly want is that we never direct our focus; we never concentrate our power. Most people dabble their way through life, never deciding to master anything in particular.” You can still think big – life’s great leaders are dreamers and visionaries. But to get motivated to achieve that goal, you must focus on what it takes to get there.
One way to do this is by setting SMART goals, which are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and anchored within a time frame. SMART goals make it easy to focus on one step at a time and hold yourself accountable. Another practice that can help you improve your focus is priming, a morning ritual that uses a combination of meditation, incantations, gratitude and more.
Poor time management
For people who struggle with how to be motivated, life often becomes an insane time management obstacle course. Just when you feel like you have a handle on one area of your life, your attention is immediately needed elsewhere. There’s no time to stop and reflect; it’s always on to the next thing that’s been put off until the last minute. It’s nearly impossible to learn how to be motivated when you’re constantly struggling to keep your head above water.
If this sounds like you, your issue is more about time management than about finding how to get motivated. Instead of relying on a to-do list and a traditional calendar, use Tony’s Rapid Planning Method® (RPM). RPM works as a system of thinking and enables you to learn how to get motivated, allowing you to get to the heart of what you want and then reap the rewards. To get motivated, give attention to what it is you really want in life and then everything falls into place to make those goals reality. RPM is not just a time-management tool – it’s a Results-oriented/Purpose-driven/Massive Action Plan.
How to get motivated with an RPM plan
Step 1: Capturing – write it all down
Humans aren’t designed to keep everything in their heads; we can only keep track of somewhere between five and nine things at a time. That’s all our short-term memories can handle. Try to keep too much in your head and stress will follow.
Have you ever had a big project but no idea where to start? How to be motivated – and stay motivated – is commonly impacted by an overload of to-dos. Instead of diving into your task, chances are you walked away and did something else, putting it off and continuing the procrastination cycle. Frequently we don’t reach goals because we’re overwhelmed by all that needs to be done, not because we lack the ability. One way to get motivated is to put tasks on paper. This is different from a traditional to-do list. Write down the things that are a must for you to get done, whether it’s the things you really want or situations that demand your attention. Write everything you have to do for the next week or two. This is the first stage of chunking.
Step 2: Start chunking
Chunking is how to turn a lot into a little and is one of Tony’s secrets for how to become motivated. Chunking is a way to make everything you need to accomplish seem more manageable. You’ll group things into a few similar categories, creating fewer containers for your brain to process. This way they can be used effectively to produce the outcome you want without stress or shutdown. Chunking also lets you know the order you’re going to accomplish tasks because you’ve already decided in advance what’s most important.
Fast fact: When most people are learning, they tend to remember the things that come in groups of three. Anything above three often becomes too much for us to remember easily. In other words, most people tend to get overwhelmed after three different pieces – or chunks – of information.
Look at your list of musts for this week and start to find what they have in common. Start to chunk items that fall in the same categories together such as a group for relationships, another for finance or work. Write out your items under their master category so that you can easily tell what goes where.
Step 3: Create your RPM blocks
Now for the fun part in your how to get motivated plan. Pick an area that is of most concern to you and create an RPM block for that area. Here’s how to get started:
- Name your block with the category and list results you want. We’ll stick with the example of losing weight here.
- Now write down the purpose behind that result – why is it so important to you? Here’s where you put your compelling reasons from the questions above. These reasons, such as living a longer life, are the key for how to get motivated.
- Lastly, create the sequence of priority actions that will lead to your result.
Congratulations – you’ve made your first basic block! Continue with your other desired results to make more blocks. Along the way, always feel free to change your approach if you’re not making progress and can’t figure out how to become motivated again to continue. It’s okay to assess where you are and devise a new plan if it helps you reach your goal in the long run.
More tips on how to become motivated
Have your RPM in place and still having trouble with motivation? Use some of these tips on how to get motivated.
Motivation tip #1: Ask yourself these three questions
The first step toward taking back your focus and achieving your vision starts with asking yourself the right questions. Ask yourself these three questions – in this specific sequence – on a consistent basis. The order is crucial because if you don’t know what you want, why you want it and then create a plan for how to get to it, your plan won’t hold up through life’s challenges. This is how to get and stay motivated.
1) What do I really want? The first question to ask when you want to figure out how to get motivated is what’s the outcome I’m after? What’s the specific measurable result? The more precise you can get, the stronger your plan will be. Take the difference between “I want to lose weight,” and “I want to lose 15 pounds.” For the first, you’ll never know when you’ve achieved it. The other can be measured by standing on a scale.
2) What’s my purpose? Next, ask yourself what are my reasons for going after this goal? Why is this not just a “should,” but a must for me? The emotional quality of purpose makes what you will do not only sustainable, but powerful.
You can amp up how to get motivated by thinking about the trigger words that get you excited about your desired outcome. For someone who wants to lose weight, you might think about being sexy, desirable or consistently energized. As Tony says, “Changing your habitual vocabulary – the words you consistently use to describe emotions – can instantaneously change how you think, how you feel and how you live.” Using trigger words changes your biochemistry and sense of vitality, giving you more momentum as a result.
3) What do I need to do? Now it’s time to take action. Ask yourself what your massive action plan is. This needs to be more than just one or two things. Brainstorm a variety of ideas and write them down. What are all the possibilities? You’ll later decide which one has the most power, but the more possibilities you have now, the better.
Motivation tip #2: Make excellence a routine
It’s important to realize that creating a routine is not only for when you are struggling with how to be motivated. If you create a “pre-game” routine for certain areas of your life such as working out, giving sales presentations or attending events, you can unlock an extraordinary life. Your pre-game routine starts with a task that is so easy you can’t say no, such as filling up a water bottle or putting on your favorite dress shirt. The next step involves making physical movement toward your end goal, like getting in the car to go to the gym or hailing a taxi to get to your event. The third step is to ensure you follow the exact same routine every time you have to do this task.
The habits you develop and patterns you follow on a daily basis are what make up your identity and self-image. Why not create patterns that not only show you how to become motivated, but also how to be the person you’ve always wanted to be?
Motivation tip #3: Evaluate your mood and energy levels
No matter how connected you are to a goal and how good of a time management system you have in place, you’ll still have trouble finding a way to get motivated if you are in a bad mood or are exhausted. If you have issues with motivation, take an inventory of your moods and energy levels. Do you consistently experience “brain fog” or experience anxiety when working toward your goals? Do low levels of energy or depressing thoughts get in the way of your progress? If these issues are common, it’s time to examine your lifestyle. You may need to adopt a healthier eating plan or find ways to reset your mood before you can learn how to become motivated.
Why is motivation important?
Motivation is deeply related to one of our essential Six Human Needs: growth. If you’re not growing, you’re dying – and if you don’t learn how to be motivated, you’ll never grow. The things in life that are really worth having take effort to get, from financial freedom to healthy relationships. Motivation is essential to achieving all of these dreams.
What to do if you lose motivation?
If you’ve hit a plateau, remind yourself why you wanted to achieve your initial goals. Everything you do in life must be connected to your vision and purpose. Did you lose sight of that purpose? Or is it that your goal no longer resonates with you? It’s normal to lose motivation occasionally, but if you’re feeling uninspired long-term, it may be time to reexamine and reset your goals.
How can Tony Robbins help you to be motivated?
Dive into Tony’s Rapid Planning Method with The Time of Your Life and use priorities, duration and leverage to create more time in your life. By understanding what you want and need, you’ll be able to get motivated and be less stressed. Make it a habit to take action every week. Instead of spending energy thinking about how to get motivated, you’ll find that even the scariest tasks become manageable because you know what’s motivating to you.