Humans have a hard time of reaching goals, whether it's to get ahead at work, succeed in school, get healthy, sober, whatever. It's tough. Things aren't black and white and when the chips are down we tend to give up.
I'd like to share some of the ways I've climbed out of the pit of apathy I found myself in.
1. Find a support system.
Most of the time when people screw up, or get off track it's because they don't feel like anyone is rooting for them. I definitely found that in my own life. When you acknowledge your friends, family and the other people that have your back, you start to take responsibility for your actions, and thus, your motivation.
When others have a high opinion of you, it starts to have an impact on what you think of yourself. So surround yourself with positive people.
2. Find your "Inspiration"
Everyone's got that one thing that makes them tick, whether it's sports, books, writing, music, politics, or culture, people gravitate toward their interests. And when motivation ceases to find us at work or school we can use these things we love to ignite it. MUSIC, huge thing for me. Single-handedly, music has gotten me through some of my darkest times.
If your thing isn't music: find out what that is. Your inspiration and motivation will come from within, but it will also be kick-started by the things you love. Or what pisses you off, that always works too.
3. Remember that working hard doesn't necessarily mean you're motivated.
If you spend all of your time doing something you hate, you're probably not going to be motivated. While not everyone gets to quit their job and do whatever they want, there still has to come a time when you've got to choose to be motivated. Surround yourself with positive things. Make your desk cute, whatever. Sometimes you have to just get it done. Motivation isn't always a big, sweeping feeling that makes you feel invincible, it comes in little steps. So go easy on yourself and take the journey.
4. Pick affirmations that really speak to you.
Not everyone responds to those cliche, "You can do it!" motivational things. If you have to say, "FUCKING GET IT DONE" to yourself to make it happen, than do it. Who cares if your motivation comes from a messy place, at least you have it!
Make sure that your motivational style meshes with your personality, and never, ever be ashamed if you don't fit in with the societal ideals behind it. Who gives a shit what your goals look like if you're working toward them
5. Look up other people's failures.
If you're having trouble motivating yourself because you feel like you're behind, or too old, or getting too old than first of all....stop it, because lots of extremely successful people who have totally sucked in the past. They were also probably older than you when they sucked too. So that's motivational and inspirational for me I guess...because some roads to the top are longer than others.
Remember that! We got this.