Motivation is a double-edged sword that can work for or against you. We all know someone who displays an unrelenting drive to succeed, has razor sharp focus, and confidence. We find ourselves inspired by some people and wonder how we can obtain the kind of passion and resilience they have. When you break it all down, an individual lives and dies by the good (or bad) habits that are interwoven into the fabric of their daily routines.
Your habits define your existence because they are the ingredients that comprise the structure of your life. The habits an individual has nurtured will inevitably either lead them towards the path of success or that of disappointment and frustration. Habits are the architecture of our lives and we are the architects. Here are 4 motivational habits you can do each day to bring more significance and success to your life.
Related Reading: Learn How To Stay Motivated By Igniting Your Motivational Attitude
As the old military adage goes, proper planning promotes peak performance. Successful people take a few minutes each night to plan their next day. While you don’t have to plan each minute, you should know what tasks you have, how you can accomplish them, and when to do what. Writing it as a list can help you clarify everything and can help reinforce the idea. Plus, it helps you focus on your life (and particular needs each day).
Successful people also set priorities for each day of the week. They also have long-term goals in place, such as where they want to be in five years. Having a long-term goal is excellent, but you have to learn how to break it up into yearly, monthly, and daily tasks that can easily be completed. Set aside some time each night to prioritize your goals and objectives for the following day. Then try to plan for the week, month, or year. The quickest way to become unmotivated is to lose track of your daily/yearly goals.
We can’t always count on ourselves to suddenly become motivated to take care of things. If you find yourself asking when you will finally come around to starting that project or other responsibilities than you will inevitably put yourself in a position of waiting to “feel” up to it doing that thing, which is not always reliable. The difference between professionals and amateurs is that professionals create schedules and commit to it while amateurs depend on “feeling” motivated. Schedule a set time to take care of important tasks and stick to it. You are more likely to get it done instead of waiting to get inspired.
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Most people are, by definition, procrastinators. They like to put things off until the last minute because they believe the pressure makes them better at what they do. Instead of waiting all day, do what you know is essential at the beginning. Try to take care of things on your list that will take the most time, resources, or energy to complete. You will feel less anxious throughout the rest of your day knowing that the most important tasks are done.
Creating motivating habits and rituals are important to your success because it takes the thought of starting out of the equation. Most people never get to doing anything because they spend too much time deciding how to get started. Turn motivation into a habit by learning how to show up, and actually showing up. No matter what.
What is sustained success? Definitions fly by, and most people have a particular one that they love. In most cases, it is defined by being successful and keeping that success going throughout the years. The first step is to determine what you mean by success. For example, are you talking about your work or personal life? Do you want them to mesh well together or are you just focusing on one or the other right now? Once you know what it means to be a success (for yourself), you can start defining smaller goals to help you reach that one larger goal of being successful.
Goals aren’t just there to help you achieve something in particular (though that is how most people use them). A goal is just something you want to accomplish and can include a variety of things. Most people tend to focus on entrepreneurial goals only, such as getting a promotion, going into business for yourself, or learning more about what your profession.
Once you’ve determined what you want and how you can achieve it, you must follow through on everything.
Most people start falling behind during this step because they aren’t sure how to reach their goals. However, if you take a moment to think about what you want and how to get it, you can reach your potential. The key is to write it down or type it out so that you can refer back to it and remind yourself of what you’re trying to do.
Most people achieve the success they want, only to wonder what to do next. Motivation is the number one ingredient needed to sustain that success for extended periods and throughout your life. You can motivate yourself by earning more money, becoming an expert in a particular industry, or striving to give 100 percent all of the time.
Related Article: Be Ambitious With Goals, Not Deadlines
Whether you’ve been in business for years or are just starting out, you may find that life can be full of accomplishments as well as setbacks. Motivation should play a significant role in all aspects of your life, including the business side. Motivation will keep you get you through setbacks and see you through many accomplishments. You may even find that lessons learned as a child (or young adult) come into play. For example, external stimuli are always present, but it doesn’t have to directly affect or impact you.
From a business perspective, it can seem harsh at first, but it is key. Two things can change your current course, and they can be good or bad, depending on your outlook and how motivated you are.
When something great happens in your life, you feel excited and renewed. For example, if you get a promotion at work, you are elated that you make more money and have more responsibility. Over time, however, that something excellent turns into another day at the beach. You get excited at first because it’s new and different, but over time, your motivation often wanes.
When something great happens, most people claim that they’re lucky, but luck has nothing to do with it. Consider how much you were prepared for that opportunity. In the example above, you worked hard, learned the ropes, and showed the boss that you were capable of handling the new tasks given to you.
The newness from within aspect is a little harder to define because what motivates you is different than what motivates others. Some people focus primarily on money while others want recognition for a job well done. The goal here is to find a way to motivate yourself that doesn’t rely on anyone else. For example, you can recognize the great job you did or change the way you think about recognition overall.
Both outer and inner changes can have huge impacts on your levels of motivation. Learning how to harness those motivational levels during difficult times is what is going to help you accomplish the most amazing things in your life and business.
You face tough customers and fierce competition. That, of course, goes with the territory of being an equipment manufacturer or dealer.
However, you also face complex organizational challenges—challenges that can only be addressed on the strength of dynamic leadership. Not just leadership at the top, but leadership in every department.
More so, these challenges demand that you also look to the development of leaders for the future, because the challenges of today will continue into tomorrow and be joined by new challenges still to come.
Finding and cultivating these future leaders is thus imperative. How will you go about it?
The starting point is to take note of individuals who exhibit high potential for leadership. Unimportant is whether these individuals are performing highly in whatever role they happen now to occupy.
The reason it is a mistake to prize performance over potential is that some people who are exceptionally competent at their jobs lack what it takes to be a great leader. By elevating those who aren’t cut out to be leaders, you risk the creation of department or companywide morale problems—and those can easily bring about a loss of productivity.
Consider this example. On the payroll of an average-sized company is a technician. Because he is the company’s best technician, it’s decided to promote him to the position of manager of the service department with the expectation that his excellent technical skills will translate into excellent leadership skills.
He eagerly and appreciatively accepts the new responsibility. However, in practically no time at all, it becomes evident that he is incapable of inspiring subordinates to act as a cohesive, functional, efficiency-driven, cost-conscious, innovation-minded team.
After a period of wishful waiting to give him a chance to “grow” into the role, top management finally realizes that pushing this technician to take on an assignment outside his area of expertise was a mistake. Now, someone in the company is going to have to play the “bad-guy” and remove an otherwise outstanding employee from his or her leadership post.
The job will go to someone else, but whoever gets it will be nervous about stepping into the shoes of a coworker who vacated not due to promotion but, rather, to demotion.
Additionally, the tech who lost the position will almost certainly be disgruntled, having suffered the indignity of being branded a failure. How much contagious bitterness he will spread throughout the company in the weeks and months ahead is difficult to predict. But spread it will, and almost surely to the detriment of the company—perhaps even to the extent of unsettling a number of loyal customers and reliable suppliers.
The corollary of this example is the employee who excels in his job but has no desire to be a leader. He’s promoted to that position regardless. A born follower at heart, he has no clue what to do with the leadership mantle thrust upon him. Things quickly unravel and, again, someone must act as the bad guy who brings news of demotion. Hard feelings surface and, once more, the company is in trouble.
Moral of these two stories: it is vitally important that you identify the right people for leadership roles—individuals who demonstrate the actual potential to serve in that capacity.
Here is a list of questions you should be asking yourself as you scout for individuals with the makings to become an outstanding leader. Does this person:
Your goal in asking these questions is to select as candidates for leadership development those individuals most likely to deliver results.
In the course of conducting your talent search, keep in mind that no rule requires you to only consider employees under the age of 40. You’ll find great potential leaders among the ranks of your Millennial employees, yes. But you’ll also find worthy candidates among the gray-haired set. Always remember that the older employee who is intimately familiar with your processes, procedures, structure, culture, and perhaps even your customers may turn out to be an ideal individual to train for a leadership role.
Also, do not overlook the significance of America being a multicultural, multiethnic society—a fact duly acknowledged by federal and state Equal Opportunity laws which encourage you to strive for the most diverse workforce possible. So be sure to give female and minority employees careful consideration as potential leaders. They bring unique qualities and perspectives to the leadership table and, as well, enhance your ability to attract, hire, and retain top talent at all levels.
Now that you have identified potential and emerging leaders among your employees, it is time to prepare them for positions at the top.
The process of developing a leader involves 10 steps. Happily, these steps are simple.
One final point. If your company is family owned and you’ll one day be passing the baton to a son, daughter, grandchild, or another relative, be sure to have in place a succession plan that includes the 10 leadership development steps listed above. Your heir apparent needs to be fully ready, willing, and able to step into your shoes and carry your legacy forward. Leadership development of family members is a matter you cannot ignore.
It has been argued that great leaders are born, not made. But that is incorrect. Because even natural-born leaders must be trained before they can successfully occupy the big office or be in front of a counter. You owe it to your company—and to yourself—to properly and completely train individuals who are legitimately suited to become leaders. Otherwise, you may be doing nothing more than courting disaster.
© 2018, Christine Corelli & Associates, Inc. Christine Corelli has had a distinguished 25-year career as an international keynote speaker, workshop facilitator, and business columnist. She has authored six books, including the best-selling, Wake Up and Smell the Competition – now in its fifth edition. Corelli’s clients are characterized by Fortune 500 companies, major trade associations, and an abundance of mid-size and small companies. To learn more visit https://www.christinespeaks.com – To contact her for an upcoming meeting or event, call (847) 477-7376.