Okay, most of you probably know that I am currently out of school. For those who don’t, I just graduated this past May… and already, I understand the STRUGGLE of staying motivated. I mean, all my life, I’ve relied on both school and work coexisting to keep my head sane and my life structured, so when one of that (or basically, HALF of my life) no longer existed, I felt a wide spectrum of emotions. I didn’t know if it was okay to be that conflicted, confused, bereft, deprived… I mean, after all, shouldn’t I feel
damn proud of myself for finishing college while working 30+ hrs/wk? Why didn’t I feel like this was a good time to celebrate and just RELAX this overworked little brain of mine?
After graduation, I immediately felt a downpour of doubt over my head. “What’s next?” – I kid you not – this was the ultimate question. At the time of graduation, I didn’t have a job as I wanted to dedicate my last few months solely to school without any added stress/workload. What do I have to look forward to? No school, no work, no alarm, no routine. I went through a series of phases where at some point, I avoided people. I avoided the questions, so I would not have to face the answers. “Umm, I don’t know.” Classic answer but unworthy (at that time) for me to openly admit.
So off I went on this soul-searching journey. Whether it’s working out at the gym, reading self-development books (listed at the end of this post), or something as simple as penning out my thoughts on the numerous journals that I have (I classified each one for different “type” of feels…), I sought the time to find that “gold” I was looking for. Did I find it? Hmm, let’s see –
I found a road leading me to paths I’ve never taken. A road where I could make ANY decision I wanted, nothing to hold me back. The thrill of that alone reignited something inside of me… This detour of my life shaped me to become more self-motivated.
So how do YOU stay motivated?
- DO NOT compare yourself. “Comparison is the thief of joy.” While I know that the occasional comparison may be seen in a positive light, some of us allow such comparison to bring ourselves down and that’s NOT the way we want to go. Everyone has a different journey. As cliché as it may sound, it’s important to realize that the chapter you’re on is not the same chapter as everyone else’s. Heck, sometimes, other people aren’t even in the same BOOK, let alone, the same chapter. Everyone lives their lives differently, and this should not dictate any determinant of success. Different doesn’t mean better. Different simply means just that – different.
- Outline your goals. If you’ve been reading my posts, you already know how much of a planner I am. This summer, I relied heavily on my planner. I color-coded everything to make it appealing to my eyes (I’m super visual!) and made tasks seem all that much fun! Outlining your goals not only influences you to focus on yourself, but it also gives you that self-fulfilled purpose that we all crave. Aside from to-do lists and planners, I also recommend dividing paperwork/lists into folders. For example, I made a folder for “Graduate Schools” with lists of potential schools, their requirements, deadlines, and GRE prep materials, and then I made another folder for “Career,” where I outlined dream jobs, programs to help me get there, etc. My point is – if you’re at least able to outline your goals, the rest shall follow, so just find your personal way of doing so that would help trigger that internal passion.
- Find a hobby. I know it sounds rather vague and quite odd, if you ask me, but trust me, we all live in a world where we’re so focused on the environmental factors surrounding us and every so often fail to focus on who really matters in this picture… US. I remember when my best friend asked me what I liked to do for fun. Umm, excuse me? And then it hit me… I didn’t even know. Am I boring? Do I really just go to school/work/gym? Is that my idea of fun? I’m not going to lie, college made it hard in a way to have a social life; I locked myself up in a dungeon pretty much to study for those now-unnecessary science classes I had to take. So as part of my soul-searching journey, I went on a quest to find myself. Literally. And then, I found my WordPress that I was neglecting for some time and just started reading and writing more (with the help of my local library). I sought cute coffee shops + cafes and found the “writing juice” I once left in high school… and have been blogging ever since.
- CONNECT. I know it’s a rather vague word with some ambiguity, but try to realize that there is, indeed, VALUE in connecting with people… and I don’t mean that solely via social media/behind the computer. I mean, TRULY connect; have raw authentic conversations with one another. Share takeaways, explore genuine interests/passion, seek advice, BE INSPIRED. I usually find myself more amplified whenever I hold such conversations with likeminded individuals, and I have zero doubt you’d feel the same!
Wherever your passions lie, whatever your niche may be, just know that you CAN ignite motivation upon thyself… and who knows, along the way, you’ll inspire others too 😉
DREAM BIG, ACHIEVE GREATER!