The final tip Daniel Pink offers in his book Drive is to Create Your Own Motivational Poster. I know, it sounds lame, but I played around with it and it’s incredibly fun.
Try these sites:
I made my Kismet poster using bighugelabs.com. It was very easy.
Here is a smart and simple exercise for assessing whether you’re on the right road to autonomy, mastery and purpose in your life from Alan Webber, Fast Magazine cofounder.
Get a few index cards. On one card, write your response to this question:What gets you up in the morning? On the other side of that card, write “What keeps you up at night?”
Keep each answer to one sentence. Stop when each gives you a sense of “meaning and direction.” Now you have something to use as your personal compass. Check in to see if they remain true. If not, ask yourself what you’re going to do about it.
Pink, D. H. (2009). Drive: The surprising truth about what motivates us. New York, NY: Riverhead Books.
Daniel Pink’s Drive shows that mastery requires “deliberate practice” which is not simply consistency of work, but “very purposeful, focused and…painful” work.
Five steps to mastery:
- Deliberate practice includes changing your performance and setting new goals, not simply doing the same thing over and over again (Pink, 158).
- Repetition matters. “Basketball greats don’t shoot ten free throws…they shoot five hundred.”
- Seek constant, critical feedback.
- Focus on your weaknesses and how you can get better.
- Prepare for an arduously exhausting mental and physical process. This is why so few succeed. Not too many people commit this strongly. Will you?
Pink suggests that you get unstuck by “going oblique.” In the 1970’s, Producer Brian Eno and artist Peter Schmidt created a deck of cards that contained strategies to overcome stress and being “stuck” creatively. They called it “Oblique Strategies.”
You can purchase this deck of cards for $500 or used ones for $65 or you can get some great examples for free, here.
I think the bottom line is to “jolt” you out of your rut.
Maybe a deck of cards containing oblique strategies doesn’t do much for you.
For me, visiting an art gallery or going to a live music event will inspire me to “break the walls” to creativity. Perhaps reading the biography of someone you admire will do it for you, or maybe a weekend trip to a cabin with no technology.
It will be different for everyone. Just make sure it’s in your arsenal of tools for work.
After you ask the Big Question, you need to ask the small question:
“Was I better today than I was yesterday?”
Did you do more?
Did you do it well?
Monitoring day-by-day success ensures you will reach your goal long-term.
Source: Drive by Daniel Pink, pages 155-156
Tip #1 of 9 for Awakening Your Motivation: Give Yourself a Flow Test
In flow, people live “so deeply in the moment, and feel so utterly in control, that their sense of time, place, and even self melt away.”
If you haven’t identified what kind of activities engage you in this way, Pink suggests you set a timer for several random times throughout the day. When it goes off, record what you’re doing and how you’re feeling. You’ll soon find your “flow.”
This exercise can help you determine your optimal time of work and the “true source of your intrinsic motivation”!