Secrets to unstoppable motivation

As a life coach, a query I constantly encounter is, “How can I get motivated?”. And the truth is that even the most successful people on the planet are not motivated every single day. Trust me, motivation isn’t some magical fairy dust that falls from the sky, nor is it a constant you can bank on. Motivation stems from the secret and elusive sauce called discipline. 


We all have those days where getting started feels akin to trudging through treacle, and the siren call of Netflix from the comfort of our bed is way more alluring than getting up. But, here's the secret – the most motivated souls are disciples of discipline. They are unwavering in their commitment, whether it's related to their work, finances, or even their pursuit of happiness. Even when the mere thought of the gym or the office is repellant, they muster the strength and resolve to show up regardless. 

Now, it doesn’t come easy, I know, but we can forge discipline into a habit. It's said that it takes just 21 days to fashion a habit, and 90 days to engrave it into the core of your being. Consistency is the key. Once you've harnessed the practice of discipline, your self-confidence will bloom, and motivation will dance into your life with greater ease.

People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day

- Winnie the Pooh

Here are my eight steps to mastering motivation through discipline.

1. Craft your SMART goal

To achieve anything in life, be it a career change, weight loss, or writing a blog piece, we need to know where we’re going in order to get there. The magic of goal-setting cannot be overstated in boosting your sense of accomplishment.

Write down your goal, and to ensure your success, make it SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-Bound.

For instance:

  • Specific: Lose half a stone
  • Measurable: By losing 1lb a week
  • Achievable and Realistic: By limiting sugar to Fridays and working out three times per week
  • Time-Bound: By Christmas Eve

As the Journal of Applied Psychology revealed, "People with goals are 10 times more successful than those without goals."

2. Define your Why?

What do you truly and honestly want your life to look like? Imagine today is a short movie of your life. If you fast-forward to the end, how will it pan out if you don’t do what you promised yourself you would? What are the negative consequences of putting this off? 

Living a life true to our values and focusing on our Why? on a daily basis is key to staying motivated and I cannot emphasise this point hard enough. If you start each and every day by considering what you really want in life, you are way more likely to keep going, as you can clearly see the personal impact of your daily actions.

3. Identify your weakness

Ask yourself what the one thing holding you back is when it comes to staying motivated. Is it fear? A self-destructive habit? Once you know this, look to secure the support you need, whether it's a therapist, an accountability partner (like a coach), newfound wisdom, or the sympathetic ear of a close friend.

4. Eat frogs for breakfast 

This strategy is a fantastic productivity tool which involves completing the task that you’re most dreading, first thing in the morning. This provides a sense of accomplishment and will immediately boost your motivation for the rest of the day. Getting that difficult conversation out of the way first thing will spur you on like nothing else!

If you have to eat a live frog, do it first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you for the rest of the day.

- Mark Twain

5. Boost your dopamine

Dopamine is the chemical building block fundamental to creating action. When our dopamine levels are elevated, we are more focused on our goals.

There are many hacks to boost our dopamine and some of the tried and tested are:

  • Getting outside and accessing 15 minutes of sunlight immediately upon waking.
  • Taking cold showers (proven to boost dopamine levels for several hours).
  • Drinking coffee and eating high cocoa-content chocolate for a quick boost (the higher the cocoa content, the better).

6. Just start (with the 5 minute rule)

Commit to the ‘five-minute rule’. This is a cognitive behavioural therapy technique that works brilliantly for tackling procrastination. You only have to commit to spending five minutes writing that business proposal or jogging, and if it’s completely unbearable, you’re allowed to stop.

Just getting started is the key to building motivation, and by turning a seemingly huge and overwhelming task into a five-minute activity, your brain perceives it as less of a threat and is tricked into starting it with reduced anxiety. Once you’ve started the task you’re highly likely to realise it’s not as bad as you anticipated and will be way more likely to finish it.

7. Plan a reward for yourself 

If you’re tackling something essential that’s boring you to death, try planning a treat that you can look forward to rewarding yourself with once you’ve finished. This could be planning a date with a friend or ordering your favourite food. Linking a positive reward with something less exciting will increase productivity and encourage you to do it again. 

8. Cultivate a mindfulness practice

Finally, learning how to turn off the noise in your mind and stay focused on challenging days is a game changer, and the science is there when it comes to demonstrating how effectively meditation will do this for you. Meditation literally changes the brain and clinical studies show that a regular practice will boost motivation, significantly reduce stress, and provide you with clarity and focus, creating room for new energy and ideas.

Motivation produces emotion, but discipline produces results. If you can incorporate the above tactics that work for you, you’ll be well on your way to mastering the art of motivation.

Join our MindVibes community, where our wellness experts share regular invaluable wellness insights, and receive '5 wellbeing habits that are making your stress worse!'.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Life Coach Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

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London, E1 5JL
Written by MindVibes, MCMA
London, E1 5JL

Hello and Welcome. I’m Nicola McAdam, Holistic Life Coach and Founder of MindVibes! We're a team of certified coaches, therapists and holistic practitioners. We’re experts in reducing anxiety and on our 12-week programmes you’ll reduce stress, destroy destructive behaviours that ha...

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