Updated December 3, 2018
We’re almost at the end of January. You know, the month where we make all of our resolutions and goals. We all choose a word and live by it. We are convicted to make this year the best year ever. We want to succeed and be the best versions of ourselves.
I get it – I’m right there with you. I set goals, I start healthy eating programs, and I have made all the resolutions in the world. My problem in the past lies with motivation. How can I do it all? How can I stay on track? It usually becomes way too much and I would rather just take five naps.
Over the years, I’ve learned that I have to take a different approach to staying on track with goals and staying motivated in my everyday life. I get questions all the time on how I “do it all.” Well, first of all – I don’t. Second of all, I had to change my mindset on how to stay motivated.
The main lesson I’ve learned is that if I set a goal, it doesn’t mean it is written in stone. The second lesson is: everything in life is temporary. The third is: work smarter, not harder.
I’ll be the first to admit that I have days, weeks, or even months that I struggle with staying motivated. The house is a wreck, I haven’t cooked in over a week, and work gets thrown to the wayside. We all have our moments and our struggles. I’m far from perfect. But, I accept this and work on my goals in the smallest ways I can.
I’ve broken this down into the various aspects of my life and career, and I’ll be going over some of the little things I do to stay motivated and acheive goals. I hope something in here helps you!
How I Stay Motivated
Health & Wellness
When I really want to jump start my healthy eating habits, I will usually do a short program that is typically strict. In my opinion, it’s easier to go through with something that’s a month long than say “I am this way for the rest of my life.” It keeps me more motivated to stay on track, because what’s one month in the grand scheme of things? Usually what I find is that I want to stay on track once the month is up, but I allow myself indulgences and cheat days. I find that this keeps a healthy relationship with food, because I am a foodie!
I’ve done two rounds of Whole30 and have had success with it, and I am currently giving keto a try. When I’m not on a “program,” I try to live my life 80/20 – meaning I enjoy indulgences 20% of the time. Life’s too short not to.
I am motivated for fitness when I set realistic goals for myself, and do not overdo it. I call it a win if I can get some sort of activity in 2-3 times a week. It also helps that we have an amazing gym membership we pay for, and the kids love going. I can’t pay for something and not use it!
My goal here is to not have a disaster of a house. I’m not striving for perfection, that’s for sure! To accomplish that, I try and pick up something once a day. A lot of times I will just set a timer for 15 minutes and spend that time picking up and tidying. Once the timer stops, I will move on to something else. It keeps me motivated because I see a tidied house and I do not get overwhelmed.
Letting go and saying “I can’t do it all” motivates me. I hired a housekeeper to come once a month to do all of the deep cleaning I simply do not have the time for. I’d rather work smarter, not harder.
For meal planning, my husband and I work as a team. We plan together, grocery shop together, and take turns cooking dinners. It divides the work out perfectly, and we save a lot of money on eating out. Not having to do it all by myself keeps me motivated.
Since I am self-employed, it is imperative for me to stay on track and have a schedule to the best of my ability. Of course, my schedule is very unconventional because I have kids and a family. My work days are typically divided into two segments – during the day and evening after bedtime.
Timers are big for me to stay motivated during the workday. I like to do tasks in increments, rather than saying that I’m just going to sit at my desk and work. I will set a timer for 25 minutes and do nothing but that one task I am supposed to be working on. No checking social media or text messages, just working on my task. Once the timer is up, I take a 5-minute break to do whatever I want (yes, I set a timer for that, too). Then the cycle repeats until I have completed as many tasks as I can. This keeps me motivated because I have started to look at my workload in a different light. It’s incredibly motivating to go through the day and feel like you’ve gotten more accomplished!
The Blog World
I’ve been blogging for a long time – before Instagram was even a thing! My blog was a different beast back then and has evolved with me. It feels like the influencer world has blown up just in the last year, and is completely oversaturated. I see girls starting a blog and surpassing me in Instagram followers in six months. It can get discouraging to see the “newer” bloggers get all of the awesome paid gigs, the event invitations, and perks. I work hard all the time, and it can sometimes feel like the only thing that matters is my Instagram follower count.
So, how do I stay motivated here? Remembering that my blog matters. I have to put my blinders on. We’ve said it time and time again: comparison is the thief of joy. I’m extremely proud of my impact that reaches far beyond Instagram, and I am super thankful for the community of women who read or message me every day. I’m motivated because I have a unique voice, and I don’t just do what every other blogger does. I’m motivated because my blog pays the bills! I’m motivated because my voice matters.
Don’t Forget Your Quality of Life
One of the biggest things to keep me motivated is to always make sure that I’m creating the best quality of life for myself and my family. This seems like a no-brainer, but sometimes we lose sight of it when we’re caught up in lists and goals. Do things you enjoy. Go on date nights. Treat yourself. Create a routine that makes you happy. Don’t forget about self-care.
I’m sure if you’re a busy woman or mom, you can relate to something in this.
Like I said, I do have moments where I struggle with staying motivated. I am not an expert here, but the best thing for me is just to stand back up and keep going. I refuse to let the guilt of the things I didn’t do get in the way of all the things that I did do.
I’d love to know – how do you stay motivated through the ups and downs of the year? How do you work to achieve your goals? I’d love to hear from you!