Potato chips. Happy hour. An extra hour of sleep. Life is full of will-power-testing land mines that can blow up your diet and day.
Regardless of how mentally tough you are, sometimes you need a little extra motivation to succeed–tools to help you boost your willpower and avoid stepping on the land mines.
Here are five ways to boost your motivation to succeed and keep your goals from blowing up:
Take on the tough stuff right away. An intense hour at the gym? Get it out of the way first thing in the morning. That work that’s due by day’s end? Get on it as soon as you get out of bed.
Procrastinating only increases the likelihood that you’ll fall off track during the day. On the other hand, taking care of the tough stuff right away gives you a sense of accomplishment and makes it more likely you’ll stay on track.
Retrain your brain. Believe it or not, you can teach yourself willpower. You can tell yourself that you don’t like doughnuts, for example, even though they are delicious. You can like the taste but hate what they do to your body. The same concept applies to other willpower land mines, too. Just tell yourself you don’t like them and soon you will believe it.
Keep your eye on the horizon. If you have long-term goals — and think about them all the time — you are less likely to do things that keep you from accomplishing them in the short-term.
Sleep. It might sound counterproductive, but taking a nap is a great way to recharge your mind, get away from temptation and wake up with your motivation to succeed in tact. So go ahead, lie down and take a little nap when you’re tempted to fall off track.
Give yourself a break. Everyone needs a little break from rigor and rules once in a while. After all, why are you putting in all the effort if you never get to live life to the fullest — which sometimes involves some self-indulgence.
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