Motivation and Habits

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I’ve heard it said that MOTIVATION is what gets you started, but HABIT is what keeps you going.

Do you agree with that?

Personally I think it might be more accurate to say that INSPIRATION gets you started, and that tapping into your MOTIVATION is what helps you do it on a regular basis.

Because here’s the thing, inspiration, which can burn so brightly, can also burn itself out. Willpower wavers. Intentions falter.

So how do you keep doing the good work (in whatever interests you, writing, running, reading, fundraising, cooking healthy meals for your family, pursuing a degree, keeping your house clean, learning to ice skate, posting YouTube videos, etc)?

A friend of mine is totally motivated by a reward system she’s designed for herself. Someone else I know is re-energized every time they get a new piece of gear or gadget.

I’m a big fan of To Do lists. I’ve got my training plan for running, a list of scenes I still need to write for my novel, and household tasks that get done on certain days of the week.

How do you turn your motivation/inspiration into a habit?

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3 thoughts on “Motivation and Habits

  1. I’ve just been trying to write every night, so when I don’t, I feel really guilty. Guilt is my main motivational tool. Without a paycheck or any tangible reward for doing this, it’s about the best tool I have. That and the occasional poke in the butt by my writing friends. Seeing all of them working so hard makes me want to work hard, too.

    And on that note, I need to get some words out today. ;o)

  2. I definitely agree with this. Writing comes easiest to me when I don’t stray too far from my routine. Breakfast, coffee, light candle, get to work. The more often I stick to this, the quicker I hit my word count.

    That being said, I really miss writing new words. Can’t wait to start something new.

  3. JB Lynn says:

    B.E. — lol, guilt IS a powerful motivator, isn’t it?

    Jennifer — Why wait? Start now! (Oh wait, I just remembered you’ve got the world worst paper cut…seriously, dude, who gets a SPLINT for a papercut???

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