When you're measuring your performance, it's tempting to focus on the big milestones, the finished projects. However, by appreciating the minor tasks you do every day, you can motivate yourself the same way that addictive video games do.
Picture: Sean MacEntee/Flickr
As productivity blog Barking Up the Wrong Tree explains, we often find satisfaction from video games when they reward us for menial tasks, under the guise of pursuing a larger goal. However, it's not the larger goal that motivates us. It's that we can see our numbers going up on a daily basis. Real life, on the other hand, rarely quantifies our progress so clearly. So, rather than judging your progress by large, sometimes abstract milestones, quantify your daily accomplishments to motivate yourself better:
The secret is small wins. Those little achievements you can see day to day. Anything that went well or worked out. Don't take that good presentation or minor achievement for granted. That's progress and paying attention to those can keep you trucking when you're feeling less than motivated.
Even if it's something as mundane as checking your email or entering numbers into a spreadsheet, quantifying how much progress you've made can still keep you motivated. Staring ahead at a mountain of work between you and your next milestone can be draining. But staring backwards at the mountain of work you've already accomplished can feel very satisfying.
How To Be Motivated: 4 New Insights From Research [Barking Up the Wrong Tree]