I have a feeling this is probably the most distracting workday of the year: Cyber Monday!
We’ve been bombarded for weeks on what deals there will be on the next Xbox or iPhone from Amazon, Walmart and more.
So how the heck are you supposed to get motivated with an Inbox that you’ve happily neglected over the last four days while gobbling down that gobble, gobble?
Enter some fantastic, scientifically researched and proven tips from Charles Duhigg, New York Times', Pulitzer prize-winning reporter and author of the productivity tome, Smarter Faster Better.
Control Freaks Rejoice!
As Duhigg discovered, motivation is about being a control freak! O.K. Not necessarily a freak, but desiring control over a situation. Duhigg found that “motivation is more like a skill, akin to reading or writing, that can be learned and honed. Scientists have found that people can get better at self-motivation if they practice the right way. The trick, researchers say, is realizing that a prerequisite to motivation is believing we have authority of our actions and surroundings. To motivate ourselves, we must feel like we are in control.”
It’s not only a biological imperative, but research from Columbia University psychologists found that when we are in control, we tend to:
- Work harder
- Have more confidence
- Overcome setbacks faster
- And live longer than our peers!
To reiterate, the key behind motivation is believing we have authority (control) over our actions and surroundings.
Duhigg’s tips to trigger action: Find a choice, almost any choice that allows you to exert control.
- If you are struggling to answer a tedious stream of emails, decide to reply to one from the middle of you inbox.
- If you’re trying to start an assignment, write the conclusion first or start by making the graphics, or do whatever’s most interesting to you.
- To find the motivation to confront an unpleasant employee, choose where the meeting is going to occur.
- To start the next sales call, decide what question you’ll ask first.
The specific choice we make matters less than the assertion of control. It’s this feeling of self-determination that gets us going.
Now close that Amazon tab dear Prime addict, and create something amazing today.