Motivation: How to get it and keep it

The Latin root word mot means “move.”

the reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way.
synonyms: motive, motivating force, incentive, stimulus, stimulation, inspiration, impulse, inducement, incitement, spur, goad, provocation

the general desire or willingness of someone to do something.
“keep staff up to date and maintain interest and motivation”
synonyms: enthusiasm, drive, ambition, initiative, determination, enterprise, sense of purpose;

Develop a routine

12 Tips to Get Motivated When You’re Stuck in a Life Rut

We need to think to plan but we need to feel to act.

Overwhelm – kills your mojo
Feeling overwhelmed is another big contributor to lack of motivation. Interestingly, it doesn’t take much for some of us to get overwhelmed and feel helplessly frustrated. Staring at a sink full of dirty dishes is often enough to do the trick.

Overwhelm happens for two reasons:

  1. You haven’t learned the habit of breaking tasks down into manageable chunks.
  2. At some point early in life, you became accustomed to a feeling of helplessness and are now struggling with that psychological attachment.]

Learned Helplessness

When bad things happen, we like to believe that we would do whatever necessary to change the situation. Research on what is known as learned helplessness has shown that when people feel like they have no control over what happens, they tend to simply give up and accept their fate.

Learned helplessness has also been associated with several different psychological disorders. Depression, anxiety, phobias, shyness, and loneliness can all be exacerbated by learned helplessness.

Learned Helplessness in Children
Learned helpless often originate in childhood, and unreliable or unresponsive caregivers can contribute to these feelings. This learned helplessness can begin very early in life. Children raised in institutionalized settings, for example, often exhibit symptoms of helplessness even during infancy.

When children need help but no one comes to their aid, they may be left feeling that nothing they do will change their situation. Repeated experiences that bolster these feelings of helplessness and hopelessness can result in growing into adulthood ultimately feeling that there is nothing one can do to change his or her problems.

Some common symptoms of learned helplessness in children include:

Low self-esteem
Poor motivation
Giving up
Lack of effort
Failure to ask for help
Learned helplessness can also result in anxiety, depression, or both. When kids feel that they’ve had no control over the past events of their lives, they gain the expectation that future events will be just as uncontrollable. Because they believe that nothing they do will ever change the outcome of an event, kids are often left thinking that they should not even bother trying.

So what can people do to overcome learned helplessness? Cognitive-behavioral therapy is form of psychotherapy that can be beneficial in overcoming the thinking and behavioral patterns that contribute to learned helplessness.

Ease is the absence of difficulty or effort.
comfort too is a word related to the absence of pain, annoyance, or trouble.
pleasure, that sybaritic word: “an arousing of the faculties to an intensely agreeable activity.”

Fulfillment is defined by Google Search as “satisfaction or happiness as a result of fully developing one’s abilities or character” or “the achievement of something desired, promised, or predicted.”

Goal Fatigue or Goal Exhaustion:

No movement toward the achievement of a goal in existence for a period of time.
The goal is an albatross or a “should.”
Attentiveness to the goal, and it’s plans for achievement, is minimal.
Distractions and interruptions are a regular occurrence.
Avoidance. Avoidance. Avoidance.

Ditch the current goal. Even though you’re going against conventional business wisdom, it does no good to continue with the same unachieved, uninspired goal.
Plan a goal detox. Sometimes the best way to find your way back to a goal that ignites and inspires is to go without for a period of time. Don’t worry. The world won’t come to an end.
Select a goal intriguing to you. Nothing sparks creativity and passion more quickly.
Achieve a goal in another area of your life.
Adopt a personal goal requiring the achievement of your business goal.


Many of us are quietly plagued by a nagging sense being flawed or defective. We secretly believe that we’re a failure, which stifles our energy, cramps our freedom, and prevents us from being ourselves.

Being Defensive
Being defensive is a way to avoid taking responsibility for our behavior.

The unrealistic desire to be perfect is often a defense against shame. If we’re perfect, then no one can criticize us; no one can shame us.


Shame can prompt us to be overly apologetic and compliant. We assume that others are right and we’re wrong. Hoping to diffuse conflict, we’re quick to say “I’m sorry.”


Hidden shame often drives procrastination. If we consider doing an art project, writing an article, or pursuing a new job and it doesn’t turn out well, we might be paralyzed by shame. If we don’t even try, then we don’t have to face possible failure and shame.