It’s been a Budget week and most commentators seem to think we have reached the end of an era: the New Labour project has ended, and we are in a new period. Well, thank God for that is all I can say!
The news can be unremittingly bad – we start inhaling the atmosphere of crisis! Very soon we lose all hope for the future; then, Why bother? sets in.
Truth is: motivation is like a muscle – use it or lose it. The strange thing is most people understand that they need to exercise, but share no concept that keeping on top of their motivation is equally important. The proof of that statement comes really from the world of sport: we can see – visibly – the competitor or the team that is beaten before the event even starts. The body language says it all; and they all look as if they want the game to be over as quickly as possible because … they want to get away as quickly as possible. Champions, on the other hand, relish the moment: they know they are about to prove themselves – think Chris Hoy – and they are so motivated.
What then do we do? Well, what do most people do? They hope vaguely that they will be motivated – and you know what? That’s all it is, a hope – a vague hope.
Instead, we should benchmark our motivation and our motivational levels. One thing I say to staff when I go in to mentor them is: make sure every month, at the end of the month, you ask yourself, How motivated have I been this month? And give yourself a percentage score. If, I say, that score falls below 80% three months in a row, you have a problem and you need to take action, otherwise you will become just like the plummeting share prices we have seen on the stock market recently.
But knowing how motivated you are at the end of the month is not enough. You need to create your own Personal Motivational Plan. And this requires that you know your motivators and FEED them. That’s right – feed the little piranhas; they’ll love you for it.
The trouble is: most people don’t even know what their motivators are! I kid you not. My company, Motivational Maps Ltd, has had something like 200 management consultants/coaches doing a Motivational Map – many experts in the field of personal development. But even experts in the field of personal development sometimes don’t know what motivates them. If you don’t, go to www.motivationalmentoring.com and try a Personal Motivation Profile.
Once you know your motivators, then create your plan around rewarding yourself accordingly.
I know my motivators. Despite the political and economic bad news, I feel very bullish – in fact writing this Blog is symptomatic of just how positive I feel. My number one motivator is what we call the Creator – the need to innovate. And with it goes the motivating pleasure of getting your name on the created product! A whammy!!
James “the Creator” Sale