Waking up in the morning, you are motivated to get the day going, right?

You get to work, arrive at your desk, you are pumped up with energy and enthusiasm to dive into that big project! No? Or, it’s Saturday, the day you set aside for working on your book and you find yourself doing everything but writing. Not motivated? What’s hacking into your motivation?

I’ve found in more than twenty years of life coaching and personal growth that you can possess a desire to be, do, or have, but if one of the following ten mindsets is present, motivation will be as fleeting as your dreams.


The first motivational hacker is uncertainty. Waking up each and every day without a “what am I doing?” and “why?” leads to days, even years, of meaningless, uninspired actions. Even with a job, if you have not declared it a means to an end and are clearly aware of a vision of your inspiration, life will become a boring burden of one de-motivating assignment, meeting, and Christmas party after another. When vacation time comes you will have some fun, sun and excitement and then begrudgingly mope back to cubicle city and start counting down to the next four-day weekend or holiday. In Napoleon Hill’s classic self-help book, Think and Grow Rich, he insists that a definite purpose is a basic mindset needed to achieve goals and have an enriching life.


A close cousin to uncertainty is overanalysis. Productivity can hide in massive energy and focus on analyzing all of the facts, fictions, and minutia in an opportunity. Please don’t confuse proper planning, designing and preparation with overanalysis. For example, the business plan is done, you are ready to launch, but you’re not quite sure which web hosting and design company to go with. Set some criteria to achieve a value price based on your having a basic operational idea of what you want. Do you want a foreign or American-based company? When you talked with your designer and strategist, did they see your vision? Do they get you? Once those three criteria have been met, launch! Ready, Fire, Aim, a book by Michael Masterson, encourages entrepreneurs or anyone starting a new venture, to get it started and make corrections on the fly. No business or opportunity can, or will, account for all possibilities on paper. Some decisions will have to be made on the fly. Most importantly, if this is something you are passionate about, you will be excited to get going every day; living the dream of growing that mission, living on purpose.


If there is a ‘public enemy number one’ for killing or delaying dreams it has to be fear—fear of failure and its tricky best friend, fear of success. Both are the result of extreme focus on what can go wrong. Therefore, the conscious and sub-conscious mind work in perfect harmony to prevent you from experiencing that result and fulfilling your dream. The sad irony of fear-based living is that you are going to live the fears over and again without ever experiencing the inspired joy of attempting and achieving your goals. People who attack their goals and dreams consistently tend to be results-oriented. They may see some of the same negative visions of failure but those pale in contrast to the luminous sunlight of their dream realized. In other words, “your desires have to be so bright in your mind, heart and visions that it lights up your darkest moments!” This is not easy, especially if you’ve been beat down mentally, physically, and emotionally. You may require some help if the family legacy is about how “it” never works, or how “they” will never let you, or about remembering your “Uncle Loser,” and the last time you tried to . . . All shadows of death and devastation will fade and weaken under the bright, powerful light of living the results of your dreams in full HD details. Get motivated to take one inspired step, task, or part repeatedly. Visualize small, doable bite-size tasks; experience the joy of completing that; then do it. Don’t forget to celebrate small accomplishments in small ways and repeat until it’s time for that ticker tape parade down Main Street or the Canyon of Champions!

Living in crisis

Living in crisis is another hacker of motivation. I had a client who subconsciously would sabotage his finances so that he could rescue his family from ruin by raising ten to twenty thousand dollars; feel extremely satisfied, even euphoric; and then do it all again within the next twelve months. He was addicted to that pattern. He never had time, energy, or money to pursue his positive life-changing goals and dreams. I asked him why not use that same energy and sense of urgency to raise money for a project that is a positive life-changing dream or goal. He didn’t get it! This challenge can be hard to identify. Living in crisis and drama triggers the body’s bio-chemical response that releases dopamine, which is what cocaine users crave. All that motivation and resources are being used to resolve crisis after crisis with no advancement.

The first step toward transformation is to see the problem for what it truly is: a self-defeating addictive pattern that requires an intervention. If you look objectively, honestly with intent of evolving and not condemning, it would be revealed.

Change on this level requires a huge “WHY?” Yes: Why do you want to change? What’s your motivation? Your children? To avoid pain, shame and embarrassment? Spiritual interventions are powerful enough to break the chains of this kind of emotional addiction and should be used along with a practical budget to reveal where your money goes and a clear, honest assessment of utilization of your time. With all of the above tactics in place, you should be able to direct some motivation towards creating instead of avoiding.

 Living for some big future event

An unknown hacker of motivation that clandestinely steals from your life is living for some big future event. You have heard, and maybe said it yourself, “Once I get some amount of money, a degree or certification, divorced, married, lose weight, a job, a new job, have no job . . .”— the list goes on and on. While waiting, life passes you by. Think of how many businesses started in a basement, garage, apartment, or online by someone with little or no money, who may have dropped out of school or faced many other “adverse” circumstances.

Whatever is your purpose–your dream, Dr. Wayne Dyer states that “there are dormant forces waiting to come alive and assist you in ways you can’t imagine until you get on the path.” On that path of being the mission, living the dream, are your gifts, Divine promises of life more abundantly and overflowing; and enough for two or more generations. All we ever have is right now. The future is an imaginary possibility that may never come. The day after the big event, what will you be doing from hour to hour, day-to-day? Start doing that work now! Be that big event now in small, consistent action steps.