We implicitly talk about motivation a lot, but we realized we've never really talked about how to find that motivation. Frankly, motivation is something we take for granted. It's as if it was embedded into our DNA, but this isn't necessarily always the case. We struggle, too. We get down on ourselves sometimes, we wonder how to push through, but we've set ourselves up with a system that seems to have worked for us. Try it out for yourself. Can it work for you? Hopefully. Can we guarantee it? Nope. But Ape will try to support you along the way any who.
Set a Goal
It's hard to get motivated if there's no end point. Set a goal, and make it attainable while you're at it. Don't go and task yourself with climbing Mount Everest if you've yet to even go out for hike. You dig?
Ask Yourself— Will it Make me Happy?
It's not worth it otherwise. For example, we've crossed paths with plenty of people who aren't happy with where they ended up career-wise. Surprisingly enough, it was their "dream" career. The problem is they did it for the payoff. And if you ask them if they like their job, they'll say "It's a job. It pays the bills." If you ask Ape if we're happy with where we're at, we are. Are we done? No, sirs.
Take your goal and break it into smaller pieces. Is it a fitness goal and you're looking to gain 20 pounds? Break it into 5-pound increments. Saving for a vacation? Divide it up. Setting these milestones makes the journey more gratifying since you're thinking in terms of small steps. Not to mention it makes tracking easier.
Reward the Small Victories
With this one, you're basically training yourself to succeed. Goal. Reward. Goal. Reward. The reward will vary depending on what you're looking to reach, but you might just find yourself trying that much harder because of it.
Take the Leap
Simply put, you wont go anywhere unless you take that first step. Sounds obvious enough, but sometimes it's the hardest step. The first time we ever climbed Mt. Baldy (highest point in LA county at 10.1k ft), we weren't exactly in shape for the 17 mile hike, but we took that first step on to the mini bridge that starts the trail. Following our system, we took it one step at a time until we were back down. Yes it sucked. Yes we weren't sure we still had knees, but shoutout to that first step for getting us started.
Don't be Afraid to Fail
Failure is not the end of the world. Unless you're the Avengers. Then we're fucked if you fail. We've said it before, though, this fear is what holds a lot of people back from even taking the first leap. Like with anything, it's a matter of practice.
Your practice will be to fail. Then failing again. And maybe again. In a sense, none of the failures really matter once you've achieved your goal, though. You have to stop looking at it like an end-all. The positive light in failure is a lesson. Take note and move on to our next point.
We said to practice. However, practice doesn't make perfect. Practice makes permanent. When you do try again, make sure you learn from your last attempt then try again.
As much as you might like to do so, it can be hard to get motivated on your own. You'll need a support system. Find and hold on to people that you vibe well with. And we're not talking about the one thousand friends on Facebook who sometimes like your posts. The right group of friends will be as driven, if not more so, than you. You'll work as each others endless source of inspiration.
We believe that competition is healthy. It gets you to try harder. Us Apes challenge each other all the time. We work as each others' competitive support system. For example, when one of us decided to go for a post-grad degree, the other two followed suit. If one of us is running a mile in under 8 minutes, you bet your ass the other two will be trying to one-up each other elsewhere. Clearly, you can apply this to anything from your career to fitness. Try it with your friends. Hell, challenge us.
Celebrate Big Victories
Attained your goal? You deserve a freaking treat. Whatever it took—blood, sweat, tears, sleepless nights—it was a lot of hard work, so celebrate it. Apes tend to do this with a beer (or two...sometimes three...sometimes wine). Cheers, humans!
Make sure to follow us (if you want) to keep up: