Self-motivation is hard. We have all been there, with a big project to complete or report to write but suddenly the world around you becomes more interesting. You catch yourself suddenly finding other things to do while the blank page on your computer screen remains. Perhaps you’re even reading this blog post as a way of procrastination – the ultimate irony! Don’t worry. In this post, we will look at some simple tips and tricks for you to beat procrastination and unleash your motivation. Once you crack it, there will be no holding you back as you join the elite ranks of high achievers who have motivated themselves to success.
Finding your motivation
Beat procrastination and find your motivation! Motivation is very much a personal driver. What drives you, may not drive someone else. So the first thing to do is to figure out what motivates you. Is it ticking off a ‘to do list’? Fitting into that outfit for your Christmas party? Money? Recognition? Whatever motivates you, find it and visualise it. Put your motivator in front of you, be it in a picture, KPI board or even your bank balance. If it is in your eye-shot then when your eyes start to drift this should put your back on track. It is this reason why lots of workplaces are now joining the Visual Management revolution and using office KPI Boards to keep their staff motivated.
Break it down
Sketch out your task/goal and be specific. Don’t just say, “I want to increase sales”. State a figure, avoid vague goals and be specific. How long? How many pages? What do I need to do to achieve my goal? Now that you have a specific target in mind you can break it down into easy chunks with hourly, daily or weekly targets depending on the size of the tasks.
Make it fun
Trick your brain into wanting to achieve by making it less of a chore. If you respond well to competition try and add a little bit of friendly competition with your work colleagues. If you have a particularly dull report to write, find a way to make it more enjoyable by listening to music, munching on your favourite snack or moving to a breakout area. Office morale is key to job satisfaction, motivation and staff retention so try to keep this flexibility in mind when creating your office layout.
Focus on the elements of the task that are enjoyable even if that is just how good it will feel when it is complete.
Beat procrastination by adding rewards for productivity. Working towards a reward is the best way to motivate yourself. Motivating yourself, or your team, based on punishment for failure is likely to disengage and can lead to further procrastination, so if this is the key driving factor for you, you may want to reconsider. Just be sure that your end reward doesn’t undermine your achievement by rewarding hard work with slacking off. If you can link your reward to your motivation, you’re on to a winner. When looking at motivation, ensure to reward based on the results or behaviour you want. If you are wanting good quality work, be sure to reward its quality instead of the speed in which it was delivered. Just like when training your dog, you wouldn’t reward them with a treat for ripping up your slippers so don’t reward yourself, or your team, for the outcome you didn’t want. Celebrate and communicate that success visually with others in the team. Not only will this make the achiever feel great, but it might also inspire others to up their game (remember, competition is a fantastic motivator).
Position yourself for success.
Location can often be key to beat procrastination slumps. Trying to stay on task when you are surrounded by people off task or who have completed their task is almost impossible. It is quite natural to emulate the behaviour of the people whom we work/live with closely so try to position yourself near someone who you wish to emulate. This doesn’t need to be a passive activity either, as simply watching them can lead to feelings of inadequacy (or in some cases, it could be a little creepy!). You can be honest about your intentions and talk to them. Ask them what their key motivators are or their tips and tricks to staying on task. Allow them to inspire and influence you to reach your goals.
Now that you have taken in all of our tips and tricks the time for procrastination is over. Find your motivation, break down your goal, make it fun, set your reward, beat procrastination and position yourself for success.
Helping you beat procrastination and Make Lean Work…
Here at ClarityVM Consulting, we coach clients both far and wide about how they can use Lean and visual management to achieve their goals, exceed their targets and make financial savings which would otherwise be lost to waste. We work with our clients to create a bespoke strategy that ensures Lean is set up for success before providing specific, high-quality visual management products to sustain the initiative and make Lean work in the organisation long-term.
You can read more about the work we’ve undertaken with our clients by browsing through our Visual Management Case Studies
Further reading on the Clarity Blog:
- Developing an Effective Standard Operating Procedure
- Assessing Goals and Auditing Strategies
- Aldeburgh Lifeboat Station – Saving Lives With Lean Thinking
- A Visual Management Definition You Can Rely On
- Kaizen Events: Clarity Consulting’s Secret Weapon
- Why Your Workplace Communication Fails (…and How To Improve It)
- Why Lean Programmes Fail
- 6 Simple Solutions to Battle Workplace Stress
- How To Make Your Process Improvements Stick Around
- How To Create A Culture Of Improvement In Your Workplace
- 6 Challenges For Effective Business Leadership
- Our Favourite Lean Quotes…