Today I would like to talk about motivation, and share some techniques on finding motivational tools that could work for you. I know with ADHD it can be very difficult to maneuver through the executive dysfunction, distractions, and brain fog to even figure out what motivates us to do something in the first place.
I want you to start to think about what “motivation” means to you, and what your answers are to these questions:
What is motivation?
What does motivation look like, feel like, or sound like?
How will you know when you’re motivated?
How will you remember to stay motivated?
What would prevent you from staying motivated?
How do you think your ADHD symptoms have impacted your motivation?
What’s motivated you in the past?
What has worked to motivate you?
What has not worked?
On the surface, motivation is why we do something, right? It’s what gets us up in the morning. It’s what drives us to accomplish a goal. It’s our ultimate “why”. It always makes me think of that cliché overly dramatic actor yelling at a director, “What’s my motivation!?”
One way to discover what motivates us is to consider what are our core values. Core values are just that- they’re values that are embedded into us to our core. They’re who we are. There are no good or bad- or right or wrong- core values. They can be anything- honesty, kindness, charity, love, beauty, punctuality, justice, humor- whatever makes your heart sing. I want you to think about what core values you have. Try to narrow it down to five core values. It’s also important to remember that you can group similar values together under one umbrella term- like caring about animals can fall under the umbrella of kindness. It’s all about what the words mean to you and not necessarily the dictionary definition.
Now there’s always going to be things in life that are hard to find a motivation to do, or figure out how they align with our core values. It could be homework, chores- whatever they may be to you.
Think about your answers to these questions:
What task- or tasks- am I having trouble finding motivation to do?
What does it mean to do this task?
What about this task is important?
What would it mean to finish this task?
How does this relate to my core values?
The most important motivator is the one that will work to get you to do the task. With the little minutia of the day, it can help to change your perspective on the task at hand to get motivated to get it done. In order to be successfully motivated, you have to find the reason why you get to do something as oppose to why you have to do something. It’s a small distinction and perspective shift incredibly important. Having to do something can make it feel like an obligation. Getting to do something is a lot more positive.
What’s positive to you?
What’s a positive perspective shift?
Or, if that doesn’t resonate with you, ask yourself: is a positive outlook important?
If not, what is important?
The best solution to finding your motivation is the one that you are going to come up with yourself. You are the expert in your own life. You are creative, resourceful, and whole and have the ability to figure this out.