What motivates you?

The blog eMoms at Home has a great set of posts called 'Monday Motivation.' In today's edition, she asked everyone to comment and share their 'to-do' list for today, and what would motivate them to accomplish these items.

I participated myself, listing things I would do today (writing this post was one of them!). My motivation is a consequence - if I don't accomplish the things on my list (and I only chose a few so I didn't overwhelm myself) I have to go back to the post and tell everyone there that I didn't do it.

This got me thinking about motivation and why I sometimes can't seem to get motivated no matter what I do. Sometimes I am motivated by the knowledge that others will find out if I fail (as in the example above.) But at other times, this doesn't motivate me, it just makes me feel bad when I do fail.

Rewards can help with motivation, too. Sometimes accomplishing something has intrinsic rewards built in, such as losing weight. If you lose weight, you look better, feel better, and you're healthier. Those rewards are priceless, are they not? But sometimes the intrinsic rewards are so delayed (as with weight loss) that it doesn't always motivate in the here and now.

I often use time rewards for myself. If I accomplish x amount of things by a certain time, I can spend x amount of time on the Internet. This only works if I'm in the mood to play along with it. If I'm not, I skip the accomplishment and go straight to the Internet. :(

Motivation is a tricky thing. Sometimes you have to use multiple methods for motivating yourself. We all have goals we want to accomplish, and at first our excitement for achieving the goal is ample motivation. After a while the excitement wears off, and we have to work hard to find the motivation we need.

But it's worth it, no? Every time we push through and do the something on our list, we gain a little more confidence that we can achieve our dreams. So, what's on your list today? What are you going to use to motivate yourself to accomplish them?

Related posts:
Habits Shape Who We Are

When doing something new, don't give up!
Overcoming Procrastination