You are the type of person that other people look up to. They are often inspired by you and your accomplishments. In fact, they may even rely on you to provide them the extra boost they need to keep going.
If that describes you, you’re a leader regardless of your title or lack of one.
Being a leader is very rewarding but it is also demanding. You are expected to motivate others, yet it’s sometimes hard to keep yourself motivated and refuel your own tank. Yet self motivation is exactly what you need to keep yourself going and to be able provide motivation for followers.
So how do you, the motivator, stay motivated yourself?
The first step is to get encouragement from others who have the same impact on you that you have on those who you inspire.
Consider a mentor. Find a person who is the kind of person you’d like to be and who has accomplished some of the things you aspire to accomplish. Ask that person if they would be willing to be your mentor. Make it clear to him or her that you’re not asking for an extreme amount of their time, but rather an opportunity to occasionally check-in with them for feedback and encouragement. You could even suggest a periodic lunch where you’d treat for the pleasure of their time.
If having a personal mentor does not appeal to you, there are still other ways for you to get the motivation you need. It’s not always necessary to have a personal relationship with a motivational source. Who are the people who inspire you? You can benefit from the good example of others even if you don’t know them personally. Study their lives and what makes them successful. You don’t need to completely reinvent the motivation wheel.
Read, listen, and learn. Is there an author or speaker whose work always speaks to you? You could stock up on that person’s books, CDs, or videos and call on them anytime you need to plug in. In fact, you have an advantage in that you’re not subject to the limitations of another person’s schedule. If you want an ongoing dose of inspiration you can play a CD in your car daily. And there are books written by and about some of history’s greatest influencers that you can benefit from reading.
It is also good to have human interaction to stay motivated. Another option is to join a group, such as a networking group or a mastermind group. The advantage of joining these types of groups is that they afford you the opportunity to interact with other like-minded ideals with similar responsibilities and aspirations. As the saying goes, “iron sharpens iron.” Regularly meeting with your group can be one of the most inspirational experiences you can have. The group experience can help you learn and grow from others’ experiences and knowledge and enable you to reciprocate and help them grow too.
Importantly, look inward. Make time to reflect on your life, experiences and accomplishments. Think about what you’ve learned. Appreciate how far you’ve come by recounting goals that you once had that are now reality. Derive deserved satisfaction from recalling all the people you’ve helped.
You might benefit if you keep a journal. Journaling allows you to capture insights and ideas that might otherwise be lost. Make sure you record your insights and lessons, and not just your activities and experiences.
If, after all of these techniques you’re still not motivated you might want to retreat or vacation to refuel. As the saying goes, “Fatigue makes cowards of us all.” While it can be challenging to break away completely for even a couple of days, periods of thorough rest are crucial to our well-being.
If we stop to think about it, we realize that the motivator is responsible for motivating him- or herself. Use these ideas and develop an ongoing program of personal motivation and renewal.