Page 4: Rules of Commitment

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Remember those resolutions you made in the New Year? Your last birthday? Beginning of the month? Last Monday?

It can be really difficult to stay committed, stay motivated and stay on track to achieving your goals and building the life you envision for yourself.

Do you ever ask yourself why you failed? I recently did and noticed that I had unrealistic ideas about goals, habits and commitment.

So I’ve made some new rules of commitment to help me go further on my journey towards success, and I wanted to share them with you in hopes they might help you too.

Commitment one: Do your best

This rule erases so many common pitfalls, namely striving for perfection and comparing ourselves to others. When we do not (and cannot) meet expectations we have for ourselves, we quickly lose enthusiasm and give up. Instead of perfection and unrealistic expectations, we should strive to do our best. And that might be different each day. As long as you’re doing something towards your goal, it doesn’t matter whether it’s as good as what you did yesterday or as good as someone else might do. Just do your best and keep at it.

Commitment two: Get back up when you fail

When it comes to my goals and habits, I can often have an ‘all or nothing’ attitude. For example, at the moment, I am trying to cut out all sweet treats, because that’s how it works best for me. But inevitably, I sometimes cave. In normal circumstances, I would have just given up if I failed. But instead, I’m just trying to start over whenever I fail, so I can keep going towards achieving my goals. Don’t beat yourself up when you fail. Don’t give up when you fail. Every day is a brand new day to be better and do your best.

Commitment three: Have big dreams, realistic journeys

Everyone should have big dreams. But it won’t happen overnight, and if you always have your eyes to the sky, you’re bound to trip up on the ground. The best way to make progress towards your dreams is to break them down into small, realistic steps you can take and accomplish. That way, you’re also motivating yourself by achieving quicker wins that are helping you get to that bigger dream.

Commitment four: Stick to the decision

I have a bad habit of scheduling in the time to do something, making the decision, and then bailing when it comes to actually doing it. So when I made decisions, my brain was already expecting me to not follow through. Now, I’m trying to make a conscious effort to stick to my decisions, to retrain my brain and actually achieve the things I set out to do. I encourage you to do the same.

Do you have any rules of commitment? Tips on how to stay motivated? Share them in the comments!

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Four things that steal the moment

Moments quote

When life is made up of moments, why are so many of us wasting them? Here’s a few ideas. It’s not going to be easy to crack these, but we can at least be conscious of what we’re letting consume our minds and distract us from the moments we have:

  1. Procrastination – One of our biggest mistakes is failing to act when the light bulb turns on. Acting on inspiration, intuition and ideas means we own the moment! Don’t wait around for tomorrow. Let’s face it, we’re no more likely to act tomorrow, we’re only more likely to lose our momentum. And then that moment will be gone.
  2. Worry – When we have a problem, we naturally panic. And we let that panic eat at us, because we can’t think about anything else but the problem. But if we worry too much, we not only lose sight of the solution, but we also lose the moment. Deal with the issue head on – and if that time has to wait, put the issue out of your mind until you can start. Enjoy your moments stress free.
  3. Fear – Many of us try to mask our fears, but the truth is they govern so many of the roads we follow and the chances we take. And sometimes we’re so comfortable with our fears that we don’t even realise it’s happening. But always go after what you want and what you deserve. Give it a go. Because fear is just a wall in the mind and walls can be torn down with a bit of a push.
  4. Expectations – Sometimes, we have super high expectations of a person, an event, or a place. But in such an unexpected world, chances are we could be disappointed. Instead of having low expectations or no expectations at all, try to be open-minded and positive. That way the moment won’t be ruined if it takes an sudden turn.

(Image: Pinterest)

Three Ways to Be Productive This Week

Run the Day quote

Some of us associate the beginning of the week with being tied down and trapped in chore of work and routine, but we should start looking at Mondays as powerful and compelling, that give us passion and enthusiasm to get moving and get things done. We are in control of our lives and have the power to influence where it goes. So here are three ways to be more productive and beat that slump at the beginning of the week:

  1. Set goals, break them down into achievable actions and create a to-do list with three main tasks for each day. This helps us focus on the bigger picture and to start the day with intention. Begin with the biggest, hardest and most time-consuming task to give it your full attention and energy, and focus on each task at a time. As the week progresses, spend 15 minutes each morning looking over that to-do list, altering it accordingly, and revisiting your main goals to refresh your passion and motivation for them.
  2. Get enough sleep, wake up at least an hour earlier than your normal wake-up time, and establish a routine. By waking up earlier, we begin the day by already feeling productive, because we’ve firstly accomplished the task of actually getting up earlier but also managed to get other things done before we would have even woken up on a normal day. Then, by giving ourselves distinct working hours with regular breaks, we can tune our brains to expect certain tasks at certain times of the day, which allows us to focus and succeed.
  3. Clear away the clutter, in your external environment, your mental environment and your virtual environment. Keep your working space clear, write down all your anxieties or sudden thoughts in a notebook to revisit later, and turn off all unnecessary electronic devices and websites, including emails and your phone. Learn to say no to menial business and eliminate your distractions by working in a calm place. If you are particularly susceptible to procrastination, use your breakfast time as time worthy of all your bad habits, to get all that internet browsing and idling over with from the outset.

I hope you all begin your week with purpose, perseverance and discipline! Remember, we are the only ones in control of our life, so take it and use it.

(Image: http://www.fitnessquoteimg.com)

Midnight Motivation: What to Remember When Procrastinating

procrastinating quote

Procrastinating is perhaps the opposite of motivation. We do anything to avoid the task at hand, even those other jobs we’ve been putting off. We like to accomplish our tasks at completely different times to when we should. As we don’t always have the luxury of being able to live a life free of the tasks we never want to do, here are a few reminders and tips for the times when we feel like procrastinating:

  • We have a strange idea that procrastinating will alleviate all the negative emotions we are feeling about a task. But in truth, delaying work won’t make what we need to get done disappear and it won’t be any better when we actually do it. Procrastinating does not help stress or pressure, it only buries it and makes it worse. And when we procrastinate there is always an underlying guilt instead of pleasure.
  • Another reason why we might procrastinate is because we think that the perfect time will eventually present itself. But, most of the time, there is no ‘right’ time and motivation and inspiration don’t always come to us. Sometimes it is up to us to find it or create it.
  • Starting is the hardest part; it’s much easier to keep going than get going. Sometimes we just have to trick ourselves into doing something, and once we start, we’ll find that we’re perfectly happy to carry on.
  • We mostly procrastinate to get away from something we dread: the overwhelming, the boring, the long tasks:
    • Re-evaluate our work process: nothing will make you want to procrastinate more if you have five hours of straight work planned. Introduce regular breaks; try 15 minutes every 2 hours, for example. Then, we know when we can reward ourselves with our procrastination destinations, but at the right time.
    • Break down the tasks into smaller tasks and write down when you’ll do them and your personal deadlines – this way, they are not as overwhelming, they will be more organised and to the point, and you’ll feel like you’re accomplishing more without doing more.
  • Finally, and most obviously, free yourself from distraction, because sometimes procrastination is just habit. Close down all unnecessary browsers and applications: Spotify, iTunes, YouTube, Facebook, whatever it is that you always find yourself gravitating towards. Turn off your email notifications. Put your phone in another room or turn it off. Put your headphone in a draw. Switch up your location; nobody wants to get caught doing what they shouldn’t at the library or office, for example.

How do you stop procrastinating? Leave your tips in the comments below!

Midnight Motivation: Earn It

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Rewarding ourselves and taking breaks from periods of hard work as a form of motivation is much easier said that done. Procrastination is only a simple click away and hitting the snooze button on the various tasks we have to accomplish is much more appealing than getting our hands dirty. It’s easy to reward ourselves without actually having to do the work in the first place. So that means this form of motivation has gone out the window, right?

Wrong. We need to strip down the idea of work-then-reward. To me, at least, guilt and anxiety always underpin procrastination and laziness; in the back of our minds, we know that we will eventually have to get to work and we have nothing to look forward to. Besides, what have we really done to earn or deserve that time to ourselves and time to enjoy? There is something so much more pleasing and refreshing about getting tasks and targets done before rewarding ourselves, because we earn that reward. The reward becomes so much more valuable and special. Those undercurrents of guilt, anxiety and misery are displaced with feelings of accomplishment, fulfilment, relaxation and satisfaction; there is no work that needs to be done because we’ve already crossed it off our lists! If you have trouble with procrastination or getting to the point where you can reward yourself, be realistic but start small; take regular breaks between your tasks and then slowly increase the intervals so that you start to train your mind to not only crave the reward but also crave the feeling of achievement that accompanies the reward and is even a reward in itself. Get the work done, and that reward will taste all the more sweet.