Motivation is Temporary, Habits are Key

The question of how to motivate yourself is a common one. We've all experienced the short burst of enthusiasm where the urge to practice is unresistable. Who wouldn't want to have this drive all of the time? But we all know the reality, this feeling comes and goes and we struggle to have access to it all of the time. So what is the solution? Habits!

This isn't to say that motivation is worthless, we should just all realize that because of the unpredictable nature of motivation we need to find something more reliable. If we only practiced when we felt motivated...... we wouldn't practice very much. So you have to develop habits. Think about things that you did today that didn't require a decision. Brushing your teeth is a perfect example. At some point in time this was something that had to be initiated by your parents, but through repetition it becomes something that requires no decision. It is just a part of your day. You can use this to your advantage as it relates to practicing. 

If you struggle with practicing as much as you want every week then try this. Start allotting yourself a certain amount of time every day to practice. Make sure that this time slot is reserved exclusively for practicing (no interruptions of any kind.) The amount of time that you allot is irrelevant. Try starting with 20 minutes. Set aside this 20 minutes ahead of time to ensure it is free. The key is to commit to this practice time every day. Make your first goal to do it every day for three weeks. I GUARANTEE that you will notice results at the end of these three weeks. The decision to practice will become easier and easier as you do it more and more. Slowly through this system you will start to engrave practicing into your daily routine!

The reality is that everyone has good and bad days in terms of motivation. If you are relying solely on motivation to practice than you are missing out on a lot of opportunities. Habits allow you to take the "decision" out of practicing! 

Ryan Ellis