I had multiple topics to choose from today, but @santhoshguru had a recent post that helped me decide today's topic.
I've seen several posts on 200WAD recently discussing procrastination @chacha and losing the motivation to write and talk of breaking streaks @lucjah.
Motivation and procrastination are not issues when you enjoy doing something. Maybe in the beginning, writing on 200WAD was fun and exciting. You couldn't wait to visit each day, see if you have that little red circle next to your name, read and comment on a few posts, and then churn out that day's masterpiece. But sooner or later (it happens to everybody) you start to lose that initial excitement and motivation.
How do you keep going? What about tasks that you know you should do but you just don't like doing? There are plenty of books and articles with suggestions. I have a suggestion that has worked for me.
I can't stand exercise. Some people love it. I don't. I'm the guy who still has nightmares of being back in physical education class in high school. The problem is that I know I need to exercise to improve and maintain health.
One option is to set up a reward system for myself. If I exercise for 30 minutes, then I'll allow myself some reward. Not bad food of course. That would ruin the whole point of exercise. Maybe watching an episode of some tv show. This can work, but it is delayed gratification.
I think a better option is to combine something I enjoy with exercise. The simple example is that I started listening to podcasts during my daily walk around the neighborhood. I tend to listen to deep, heavy-on-the-information podcasts, and listening while walking is the ideal arrangement. I used to hate just walking around the neighborhood. Now I actually look forward to it! That's the advantage of combining a "love" task with a "hate" task. Over time, you can actually change the way you feel about the task you don't like. @santhoshguru discovered this same phenomenon about driving.
I know someone who can't stand brushing his teeth. Who knows why he has this aversion. He found some channel on YouTube that has short videos of silly things and practical jokes, and he watches those videos while brushing his teeth to make it a better experience. He said he always laughs at the videos, which makes his mouth open wider for a better brushing experience. I'll take him at his word on that one. The point is that he found a way to make an undesirable task at least tolerable if not outright enjoyable.
As McCartney sings in Hey Jude:
Take a sad song and make it better
Think about tasks you have been procrastinating about or tasks you just simply don't want to do but you know you need to do. How can you pair them with something enjoyable to increase your motivation to complete them? My challenge for you today is to pick one task you have to do regularly that you do not enjoy. Find a way to pair it with something you enjoy. Rinse and repeat. Let me know how it works out for you.