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GO Month: Mental Clutter - M

Let's celebrate Get Organized (GO) Month by ridding ourselves of mental clutter from A to Z!

To celebrate Get Organized (GO) Month I'm doing a series of posts on the mental clutter that can be just as pervasive as physical clutter. For each letter, I'll talk about a mental stumbling block that often impacts our well-being.

Let's focus on M ... Motivation

I'm going to let you in on a little secret: Action leads to Motivation, NOT the other way around.

Too often I hear from friends, family members, colleagues, and clients that if they don't feel motivated they aren't going to get things done. I hate to say it, but you can't wait around for motivation to strike. If you look for ways to get motivated you're going to fall short. Motivation is like the honeymoon phase of a relationship - it wanes!

Have you ever been to a motivational talk? It's a fleeting feeling you get in the moment when you're listening to the speaker. The special sauce is when you actually act on what you learned from the talk, that's when you get motivated. The equation really needs to be


So how do you combat this thinking of needing to feel motivated to get stuff done:

  • Stop waiting for motivation to strike and actually schedule what you're going to do

  • Develop a 'pre-game ritual' to initiate your action so it can formalize and become a habit (ie: do the same warm-up prior to exercise, meditate for 5mins upon waking)

  • Break a task or project down into micro pieces and you're more likely to take that first action step

  • Get an accountability buddy or life coach to hold you accountable for your goals

  • Employ the Goldilocks Rule to stay motivated - pick projects/goals that are not too easy, but not too hard, choose somewhere in the middle (ie: playing at putt-putt mini golf is too easy, but playing at the Masters' Tournament is too hard - your local country club golf course is probably just right as you'll win some and lose some, but it's manageable)

  • Remind yourself constantly that motivation is the result of an action not the cause of it

"It is action that creates motivation."

Steve Backley

Here's to freeing ourselves from the mental clutter of needing to feel motivated!

Please share with someone who needs a clearer mindset.

featured image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

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