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How to Sustain Your Motivation

How do you stay motivated and sustain it?

Welcome to 2020, a new year of vision and clarity! Some people get motivated for a moment, but then it wears off. Today’s show is about helping you maintain motivation over days, months, and years.

By understanding how to hack your motivation and sustain it, you will be able to create and achieve crystal clear goals of who you want to be, what you want to do, and what you want to give to the world.

Today’s episode is based on a live Instagram I session I did for the Kwik Brain community. In this show, I’ll give you my top 3 tips for sustaining your motivation over the long term, which will make it easier for you to reach those big goals you’ve been dreaming of! Along the way I will give you a bunch of super simple motivation tips you can work into your everyday routine and use to build a bright new year for yourself.

"Ask yourself: What is the smallest thing I could do today to achieve progress towards my goal?"


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  • You don’t need to feel good about doing something, but you do need a reason.
  • It does help if you enjoy something, so you can ask yourself: how can I enjoy this more?
  • Changing your languaging can help you to change the feelings around the tasks you are doing. e.g. if you are thinking “I have got to work out” you could try changing got to to get to. “I get to work out, I get to meditate.”
  • Reasons reap results!
  • By doing difficult things you build muscles for doing more difficult things, and you build grit.
  • What will you gain if you do the task?
  • What is the pain you will receive if you do not do the task? Visualize it.
  • For more on this topic, check out my recent episode with Simon Sinek!
  • You might also find these episodes helpful! Episode 138: Discovering Your Dominant Question and Episode 98: Discovering Your Passion & Purpose with Jonathan Fields


  • People can become unmotivated when they are unclear on the thing they want to do, or feel it looks overwhelming.
  • Break down the activity into clear, super small and simple steps.
  • “Inch by inch it’s a cinch, yard by yard it’s too hard.”
  • Try asking yourself: “What is the smallest thing I could do today to achieve progress towards my goal?”
  • You could try tiny steps like: putting on your running shoes or stepping out the door to go to the gym, read one sentence of a book.
  • Motivation provides energy for you to do the task, and a purpose helps you to bring life to the task.
  • Little by little, a little becomes a lot.
  • Zeigarnik effect: the brain doesn’t like open loops, and prefers to have tasks completed.


  • If you are tired and lacking energy, you will struggle to complete the steps you want to take towards your goals.
  • You can try some of the following 10 strategies to boost your energy. Check out the related episodes for more information!

1. Eat brain foods!

> Episode 5: My 10 Favorite Brain Foods>Episode 62: What To Eat For Your Brain with Dr. Mark Hyman

2. Think positive thoughts and kill off automatic negative thoughts.

>Episode 38: Eliminate Stress and Make Anxiety Disappear in Minutes>Episode 30: End Negative Self-Talk (Like Magic)

3. Exercise! Your physiology affects your psychology.

>Episode 65: Movements that Boost Brain Performance with Aaron Alexander> Episode 82: Workouts That Boost Your Brainpower with Shawn Stevenson

4. Try supplementation, if you are lacking certain nutrients.

>Episode 62: What To Eat For Your Brain with Dr. Mark Hyman>Episode 88: Eating for Your Brain with Dr. Lisa Mosconi

5. Consider how the people you spend time with are influencing you!

>Episode 55: Create Smart Learning Organizations & Teams>Episode 84: How to Release Happy Brain Chemicals with Radha Agrawal

6. Keep a clean environment to maintain clarity of thought.

>Episode 18: Fast Focus & Productivity with Julia Roy>Episode 41: The 5 Ways to Organize Information>Episode 46: How To Train Focus & Flow with Steven Kotler

7. Sleep!

>Episode 135: Kwik Tips to Sleep Better>Episode 25: Sleep Smarter, Faster, and Deeper with Shawn Stevenson

8. Protect your body and brain from anything that can steal your energy. Think injuries, invisible supervillains, poor quality food, light, and air.

>Episode 127: 5 Brain Damaging Foods You Need to Avoid>Episode 57: Protect Your Brain From EMFs with Dr. Joe Mercola

9. Keep your brain active! Your brain is like a muscle, use it or lose it.

>Episode 153: 3 Kwik Tips for Brain Exercise>Episode 1: Learn ANYTHING Faster>Episode 7: How to Read Faster

10. Manage your stress and anxiety, and avoid fight or flight mode, through deep breathing.

>Episode 132: How to Overcome Stress & Relieve Pressure with Jay Shetty>Episode 39: Wipe Out Negative Thoughts & Limiting Beliefs


  • Take a screenshot of this episode, tag us (@jimkwik and @kwiklearning) and tell us your favorite aha! moment. We’ll repost some of our favorites!

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