Why Stress Is Not A Bad Thing

stress

Viktor Frankl is a psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor, famous for his fantastic book called Man’s Search For Meaning. The overarching point of the book is that man’s striving to find meaning in his life is his ultimate purpose and primary motivational force. It truly is a book worth reading, I would recommend it 100 times.

A subtle point he made in his book about stress, which he refers to as “tension”, stood out to me. He argues that in man’s search for meaning, he is more likely to find inner tension than equilibrium. This is not too surprising. What is interesting is that this tension, this stress, actually turns out to be a necessary prerequisite of mental health! [Read more...]

A New Direction

newdirectionThere have generally been two types of posts on Motivation Hacker: the essays, and the quick guides. Others have fallen somewhere in the middle. Starting today, Motivation Hacker will take a new direction. Rather than putting an emphasis on the writing, there will be a greater emphasis placed on ideas. Since I’m consistently reading material that may be of value to you, any time something stands out, I’ll make a short post about it and throw the idea out there. From there you can let the idea spin around in your head, discuss it in the comments or email me about it. Regardless, there will be a greater volume of posts added to the website, and these posts will not only be much shorter than the essays, but even shorter than the quick guides. Motivation Hacker is evolving into a website of short, high quality posts. I’m excited to take this new direction and hope everyone enjoys it as well!

Willpower A Limited Resource. How Will You Choose To Spend It?

willpowerThe tremendous value of willpower is almost innately understood by individuals across the globe. We believe that if we had a little more willpower, or a lot more of it, we could accomplish our goals with ease and improve our lives.

And this is no myth. Interestingly, researchers have found that self-discipline is a better indicator of academic success than IQ. Additionally, individuals with more willpower generally have better physical health, mental health, spending habits and financial security than those with less willpower.

There is no debate on the value of willpower. However, the is an ongoing debate among scientists regarding other aspects of willpower: is it a limited resource? Can it be increased? And does focusing too much on willpower, paradoxically decrease motivation? [Read more...]

One Big Myth About Motivation

motivation“Just visualize success!”

Tim Ferriss, author of the popular 4-Hour Workweek, had his book turned down by 26 publishers before it was accepted. In his words, “it was frustrating; I had to go into it preparing myself psychologically for the worst and hoping for the best. And that’s a mistake that people commonly make with positive thinking; they try to trick themselves into only seeing the positive outcome and that’s setting yourself up [for failure]“. Tim nailed it, and the science is here to back it up. [Read more...]

A Quick Guide To Dealing With Procrastination

how to stop procrastinatingPsychological defense mechanisms are a common theme of this website. Our brain uses them outside our consciousness, and begins to make up stories that we start to accept as our realities. However, this often gets us into trouble, because the stories we believe are almost never true. Once we recognize the defense mechanisms and how they work, we earn the power to change their effects on our lives. This is an article about procrastination. [Read more...]

A Quick Way To Motivate Yourself, Backed By Science

motivate yourselfA popular belief in the world today, especially in self-help, is that telling yourself to do something is effective. I’m going to go to the gym five times this week. I’m going to sit down and read my book for 3 hours today, and so on. Think about it for a second: how well has this worked for you? If it was effective, we would literally get everything we want done, and that obviously isn’t the case (not to mention unrealistic). Thankfully, there is a better way, and the science is starting to back it up. [Read more...]

A Quick Guide To Dealing With Anxiety

confidenceAnxiety is a normal and healthy part of our lives: being anxious about the future leads to better preparation for that future. However, there are obviously circumstances where anxiety can become crippling and immobilizing. Here’s a brief guide centered around three ideas you should carry when faced with similar circumstances. These are the absolute best ways I’ve discovered for dealing with anxiety. [Read more...]

Staying Motivated On A Long Journey

long road aheadMotivation is often hard to sustain. It’s normal to feel highly motivated for a short period of time, but how long can you keep it up? If you’ve ever been highly motivated to go to the gym, to study, to go the extra mile at work, and so on, only to find that motivation dwindling with time, this article is for you. [Read more...]

You Get Out What You Put In

effortThe success you achieve in life will be proportional to the quality and quantity of the effort you put in. This extremely short article makes a quick, yet valuable point. [Read more...]

Motivation Is Not A Personality Trait

no ideaThe following idea could change your life.

That idea is this: Motivation is not a personality trait. It is situational.

If you think you’re unmotivated, you might believe that there’s something wrong with you. Labels like loser, lazy, and failure are thrown around when you may find yourself in a funk, but never let these words define you as a person for one simple reason: They don’t. Let’s look at some extreme examples to show you what I’m talking about. [Read more...]