17 Ways To Get Motivated in 2023

No matter how motivated we are, we all get a little unmotivated at times. Even great motivational speakers like Tony Robbins or Les Brown have experienced slumps in life.

We can all get down to such a low that it’s difficult to imagine making positive changes. If you’re feeling that way right now, I want you to know that life isn’t hopeless.

All it takes is one small step at a time, and eventually, positive change can happen. Through research and experience, I’ve come up with a list of ways you can break out of your slump and be motivated again.

You can be motivated to workout, lose weight, study, do schoolwork, clean your room, or anything you want to accomplish in life.

These techniques will help motivate you to get out of bed in the morning on the days when you have no energy and get to work.

I believe you can be more motivated mentally and emotionally than you’ve ever been before.

Room desk laptop window sign saying you got this how to get motivated

1. Focus on one big goal everyday

It can quickly get overwhelming when you take on a long list of tasks in your day. You run out of energy and completely lose motivation. It’s important to recognize when you’re trying to get too much done.

It’s true that many of us have a lot to get done in our day. There’s a lot I wish I could accomplish too. But I’ve learned that if I just get one big goal completed, I can feel good about myself.

Anything else I complete in my day is icing on the cake. Think of your most important goal or your highest priority right now, and just focus on that daily.

Related: 50 Examples of Personal Goals To Set In 2021

2. Be inspired by something

All of us can find something to be inspired by in life. Think of that one big goal you’re trying to accomplish.

You can find stories of people who’ve successfully accomplished that goal you’re trying to achieve.

Another way you could be inspired is by reading up on people who’ve persevered through difficult challenges.

Even something as simple as beautiful music or insightful words can be the inspiration you needed to get going in your day.

Related: 7 Inspirational Comeback Stories That Will Motivate You

3. Feel excited about your goal

When we think about getting what we want in life, we often stress about all the work it’s going to take.

But I’d suggest it’s better to get excited about the journey you’re embarking on. You’re on your way to bigger and better things.

Close your eyes and imagine yourself already having achieved that goal you’re pursuing. As you build up that energy, you’ll be motivated to get the work done.

4. Focus on what you need to avoid

Society of Consumer Psychology conducted research that found people can often lose interest in reaching a goal in the late stages of achieving it.

Like the New Year high, we all feel pumped up in the beginning to really go hard on the goal we want to achieve.

But then after a few days or weeks, the motivation fades, and people give up on the goal. One strategy that might help you stay motivated is focusing on what you need to avoid.

As an example, if you’re trying to lose weight, as you get far in your goal, focus on the types of foods you need to consistently avoid.

If you’re trying to save more money, focus on avoiding going out to eat or spending on an expensive item.

As you start getting deep into the work you’re doing, remember the things that you have to sacrifice in order to ultimately be successful.

5. Write out your goal and look at it daily

Perhaps this could be called in sight, in mind. If you frequently see the goal you want to achieve, you’re more likely to achieve it.

According to an article in Forbes, people who vividly write their goals down are 1.2 to 1.4 times likely to get them done.

When you have your goal written down and see it every day on your wall or computer, you’re being reminded of it. You’re having to review whether you’ve done it or not.

It may seem really simplistic, but just keeping the idea of doing something in your mind will make you more likely to do it.

6. Don’t commit to your goal publicly

While announcing your goal you’ve committed to achieve on social media may seem like it’ll hold you accountable, it actually might not.

A Psychology Today article noted a study that concluded sharing your goals with others may make you less motivated to do them.

An experimenter had read the goals of one group of participants and told them they read it.

The other group were told the exercise of writing their goals down was given to them in error and nobody would look at it.  

At the end of the research, it was found that those who had their goals read spent less time pursuing those activities than those who didn’t.

Try not telling anybody what you want to accomplish. Instead, let your actions speak louder than your words so you won’t decrease your motivation.

7. Have a support system

In an NBC News article, a study was mentioned that concluded 95 percent of people who start a weight-loss program with friends were more likely to complete it.

If you have someone close to you working to accomplish the same thing, it can help keep you more motivated to do it.

This isn’t the same as telling the whole world the goal you’re working on. You still shouldn’t do that.

This is you and someone else who share the same goal working together to keep each other motivated.

If you want to feel less like you’re publicly committing to a goal with your friend, just be general about it.

As an example, you don’t have to mention the specific amount of weight you’re losing, just that you’re working to lose more weight.

8. Understand motivation isn’t a constant

As I mentioned earlier, nobody can be motivated all the time. It’s just a part of life that some moments you’re going to have higher motivation than others.

In the moments when your motivation is low, perhaps you should allow yourself to re-energize. Do something to relax yourself.

You could meditate, watch a funny video, or even just take a nap. Help yourself to feel a little better physically and emotionally, and soon enough, that motivation will bounce back up.

9. Start small in your work

When you look at what you want to achieve as an enormous challenge, that’s going to decrease your motivation to do it.

But when you break it down into smaller pieces, the task can feel a little less daunting.

Instead of starting out with running for 30 minutes a day, maybe start with a jog for 3 minutes a day.

Then, slowly build up to more minutes in your cardio exercise. Over time, you can hopefully get to the point where you’re running for 30 minutes or maybe even longer.

Give yourself patience and slowly work your way up to achieving your goal. But you don’t have to take my word for it, a fitness expert at Indiana University advises the same thing.

10. Create a small win to start the day

In a previous article, I mentioned a speech that was given by Admiral McRaven. In it, he advised everyone to make their bed every day.

The reason he advises this is because it gives you one small accomplishment to start your day. It can lead you to get another task done, and then another one, and so on.

Admiral McRaven also suggested from doing this you learn to get the little things right, which are a part of getting the big things right.

While I don’t have study to back this up, it’s hard to deny the wisdom of a successful Navy Seal.

Small wins to start your day can help you set a positive tone of getting things done that keeps you motivated.

Related: What Does Success Mean? 9 Ways To Achieve It

11. Practice mindfulness

In a study done by the University of Pennsylvania, it was found that mindfulness helped to motivate people to make positive behavior changes.

It was because being aware of the present moment made people feel less shamed about being given advice on health, and more likely to feel motivation to change.

The practice of mindfulness reduces our negative reactions to emotionally charged situations. In a way, beyond the scope of what the study focused on with health, it could probably be applied in any area in life.

If you reduce your tendency for negative reactions through mindfulness, you can perceive encouragements to do a task as something to be motivated to do.

But in general, just doing an activity that relaxes you helps restore your energy, and thus make you more likely to feel motivated.

12. Remember positive memories

The University of New Hampshire found that when participants remember positive memories about exercise, they were more likely to do it again.

What if we tried to remember positive memories about every kind of goal we were working on?

Maybe it would motivate us to put that work in again daily and eventually be successful.

When you feel tempted to slack on what you’re trying to accomplish, think of a positive memory you remember from the last time you put in the work.

13. Have an uncertain reward

Believe it or not, according to research conducted by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, uncertain rewards motivated people more than certain ones.

The reason is apparently it makes working for something more like a game and less like it’s work.

Perhaps one way this study could be applied is you write different rewards on pieces of paper and put it in a box.

When you complete the work you intend to do, randomly pick one of the pieces of paper out of the box, and give yourself that reward.

Try it out and see if it motivates you to work harder.

14. Have competition

A University of Pennsylvania study concluded that competition inspired people to exercise more than friendly support. This research could arguably be applied in all areas of our life.

In the early days of growing my blog, I would look to other blogs as competition that I wanted to beat in search rankings someday.

I felt it really fueled me to put in more effort to write things that were above and beyond what my competition wrote.

As a result, many of my articles are now ranking higher than them now. I know this might not work for everyone, since some people don’t like to be competitive.

But if you don’t mind it, find someone you can look to as competition as a way to motivate yourself.

15. Give yourself immediate rewards

Cornell University researchers found that when people are given immediate rewards when working on something, it can boost their motivation.

Instead of waiting until the completion of a task, participants were given a bonus for working on a task.

When the participant got the earlier bonus, they were more motivated to complete the activity for it’s own sake, even after the reward was removed.

Next time you’re working on something, give yourself immediate rewards throughout the task to fuel your motivation.

16. Use gratitude

Being thankful is something that can help you feel good, and when you feel good, your motivation level can be higher.

Wake up everyday with an attitude of gratitude. Think of all the things you’re thankful for around you.

Be grateful for the the opportunities you have to be more successful today than you were yesterday.

Related: 2020 Gratitude List: 101 Things to Be Grateful For

17. Speak positive words to yourself

Put yourself in a positive mental attitude through telling yourself how smart you are or how hard working you are.

Get in the habit of being encouraging to yourself to help you feel up to the task of whatever you’re trying to accomplish

Final thoughts on motivation

Motivation is something we all have to work on from time to time. It’s not something that’s just going to happen on its own.

You have to do your part to adjust your thinking, your attitude, and your actions in order to cultivate it.

All of these ways can be helpful to being as motivated as you possibly can every day.

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  1. Maria Pinto says:

    This is so timely for me as I am working on Re-Prioritizing my life. I have been attending a Mindfulness/Stress Class and one of the important things said was to write down 3 things every day you are Grateful for. It takes only a few minutes & sets a positive vibe for my day. I have also reading a great book called “Essentialism, the Disciplined Pursuit of Less”, by Greg McKeown. It is a real eye opener not just for the business world but for everyday life & I highly recommend it. Greg talks about some of the things you write about here like starting small and focusing on what you need to avoid. These are such powerful tools to incorporated in every day life & so very timely in our super high tech chaotic world.

    1. That’s great to hear, Maria. Gratitude really does help start the day on a positive note. I try to remember to think of things to be thankful for every morning.