Motivation is behind our actions, desires, and needs. It’s an inner drive that makes us want to face challenges, achieve our goals, and succeed in carrying out our plans.
The more we believe in our ability to succeed and the higher our self-esteem, the higher our motivation is. On the other hand, the lower our self-esteem and the less sure we are of our capabilities, the lower our motivation is to face the challenges at hand.
Many people with ADHD have a lack of motivation that can mistakenly appear as a tendency to procrastinate, be lazy, even of being incapable. In reality, they know exactly what needs to be done and how to do it, but they don’t know how to get themselves going to complete the task. They lack motivation.
To understand what motivation is, imagine that you are facing a new challenge. Do you believe you can complete it? Have you experienced success in similar situations in the past? If so, you’ve built yourself a safety net that is your strength! If you have enough strength, there is no doubt you can deal with new tasks and complete them to your satisfaction.
When it comes to school kids with ADHD who are constantly facing different tasks and challenges, it is important to know that the more a child believes in himself, so his motivation increases to complete the task. But a child with low self-esteem will convince himself that he won’t be able to complete the task successfully and will avoid getting starting on it in the first place.
What can you do if you’re not feeling motivated? Here are a few ideas:
- Do things that make you feel good. We often tend to postpone completing tasks, we give up, or conveniently forget what we promised ourselves to do. It turns out that we do this most when we’re in a bad mood or feeling bad about something. When we feel good and happy, we’re more likely to succeed in any task.
So how can you make yourself feel good? First of all – start! Once you start you already feel better. Then, once you’ve started, set yourself small goals along the way to completing the task. When you see that you succeed in reaching the small goals, you’ll feel motivated to keep going until you complete the task successfully.
- Reward yourself. Rewards of any kind are excellent motivators for both adults and children. Research has shown that rewards are the best way to get someone going. Decide on a reward you give yourself or your child with the completion of a task. It could be something simple, like allowing yourself a coffee and cake break when you’re done, or a good movie, or anything else that will make you want to complete the task. For children, good rewards can be a little extra TV time, going to bed a little later, a certain food they like, etc.
If you can’t think of a good enough reward to get you going, try the following: give your spouse or a friend a sum of money, your phone, or anything else valuable and ask them not to return it to you until you have completed the task. This should definitely motivate you and get you going!
- Get inspired by others. Research has shown that if we associate with people who behave in a certain way, we will most likely start to be more like them. For example, if the people around us are active and tend to initiate activities, there’s a fair chance we’ll learn from them. Try to associate more with people who are high achievers, who set goals and achieve them, who don’t procrastinate, and who know what they want.
Children should join different social activities. Youth movements are excellent for this purpose because the children are often inspired by their high-achieving friends and counselors.
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