How to get motivated: 10 tips from a life coach to help you achieve your 2020 goals

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Lauren Geall
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Are you struggling to find the motivation you need to achieve your goals in 2020? Here, a life coach breaks down 10 easy ways to get back on track.

With just 10 days to go until the end of February, the chances that many of us have stuck to our new year’s resolutions are looking pretty slim. The yearly goals (and detailed action plans) we put in place back at the beginning of the year have once again become nothing but pipe dreams. Forget all those side hustles we were going to launch in 2020 – after the ride that was January and February, all we really want to spend our free time doing is curling up under a duvet with a nice cup of tea.

But just because we’ve let our new year’s resolutions slip a little doesn’t mean we can’t get back on track and achieve the things we want to in 2020. 

However, setting goals – and actively pursuing them – is a tough business which requires a whole lot of ambition, motivation and lots of planning. It’s not enough to say you want something and then just expect it to happen – we need to put in that framework to give ourselves the best chances of success.

With this in mind, life coach Raghav Parkash has shared his top 10 motivational tips to help us all find the energy we need to make our dreams happen in 2020.

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From embracing failure to being kinder to ourselves, Parkash’s tips help to reduce any unnecessary pressure we put on ourselves and make the whole process of chasing our goals seem easier and enjoyable.

1. Remember your why – and find a purpose that inspires you

When you’re feeling frustrated and unmotivated to work towards your goals, it’s important to take a step back and re-evaluate why you started in the first place.

“Why do you want to achieve your goals? Taking some time out to reconnect with your purpose is a powerful way to feel energised and motivated but also, make sure the goals you’ve set really mean something to you personally and inspire you,” Parkash explains.

A woman writing in a notebook
How to get motivated: taking some time out to remember exactly why you started is a great way to re-energise.

A simple way to do this could be writing down all of the things that excite and inspire you about your goal, in order to remind yourself exactly why you want to put in all of the hard work. 

2. Work with an accountability buddy

It’s much easier to procrastinate and put off your work when no one’s holding you to account – so recruit a friend or colleague to check in on you from time to time. It’s also a lot more fun.

“Why take the first step alone when you can partner up with a friend/buddy and share your goals with them or even take on the challenge together whether it’s going to the gym, running or anything else?” Parkash says.

“It’s far more fun to celebrate your success with a friend and much less daunting.”

3. Focus on your goals one step at a time

Being a published author may sound like a great goal to set, but in practise, the amount of work that goes into such a big task is hard to comprehend. To avoid becoming overwhelmed and not knowing where to start, make sure you break down your goal into small, achievable steps.

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“It can be very easy to feel overwhelmed with the amount of steps involved with your goal – what will help you feel lighter, clearer and more focused is taking one step forward at a time,” he says.

“It will become easier to then take the next step after the next and build momentum.”

4. Embrace failure

It’s important to accept that sometimes things won’t always go right – but that doesn’t mean you should give up.

“There will be a number of days where things don’t go according to plan, but it’s very normal for this to happen,” Parkash explains. 

“An easy way to feel less dis-heartened is remembering every day is a new day bringing more new opportunities ahead of you.”

5. Track your progress and celebrate along the way

Celebrating every time you hit an important milestone or take the next step towards your goal will help to keep you feeling motivated and inspired in your journey.

A group of friends cheering
How to get motivated: celebrate the small successes to give yourself a pat on the back for each step you take.

“Celebrating success is such a huge but important step during the achievement of any goal and is key to help you feel more motivated and happy,” Parkash explains. “Don’t leave celebrating right up until the point of achieving your goals, but create milestones along the way and reward yourself when you reach each milestone.”

6. Visualise, visualise, visualise

What will achieving your goals look like? How will it make you feel? Asking yourself these questions is a great way to visualise what you’re working towards and bolster your motivation levels.

“Every morning take some time to reflect on your goals and visualise what it looks and feels like to succeed,” Parkash advises. “You’ll feel very inspired and energised to continue taking important steps towards achieving your goals and handle any obstacles as they come up.”

7. Be kind to yourself

Having self-compassion is one of the most important skills we can develop for our mental health, and it can also help us to stay motivated. After all, beating yourself up about the smallest of mistakes or setbacks isn’t the way to make yourself feel good about the direction you’re heading in.

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“Along the way, there will be times you feel very self-critical and have days where things feel slower and like you haven’t made the progress you want,” Parkash explains. 

“The key is to remember such moments are very normal and we can’t always be perfect but with focus, consistency and patience, great things can come.”

8. Learn from someone who has achieved your goals

“Having a mentor or coach who has accomplished the goals you want to achieve is a great step forward as you can learn about their journey, the setbacks they faced and the very strategies that really helped them succeed toward their goals,” Parkash says.

To learn more about why having a career mentor is a great idea – and how you can find one – read our guide here.

9. Focus on consistency and patience over intensity

It may be important to work hard to achieve your goals, but it’s also important to make sure you find the time to relax and resist the urge to place lots of pressure on yourself.

A woman making a to-do list
How to get motivated: focus on the small steps you can take everyday rather than putting unnecessary pressure on yourself.

“It’s very easy to try and give your goals absolutely everything, but we sometimes do this to the extent that we burn out,” Parkash says. “What is more sustainable and will really help you feel energised and motivated towards your goals is focusing on the few steps you can take every day and acting on them consistently instead of trying to make all the changes suddenly and feeling very exhausted as a result.”

On top of not putting too much pressure on yourself, it’s also important that you give yourself time to destress and relax at the end of a busy day. After all, while setting up a business or working as a freelancer may not follow the traditional 9-5 model, it’s still integral that you get some rest.

10. Create daily success habits

Making your goals a part of your everyday routine makes it more likely that you’ll stick to them in the long term.

“To stay consistent and motivated toward your goals, it can be very helpful to focus on a set of habits you can do daily which will steer you toward success,” Parkash says. “This makes it much easier to focus on our goals one step or day at a time, and puts a focus on winning your day every day by completing the habits you’ve laid out.

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Rag Parkash partnered with Kallo for the launch of ‘Call on Kallo Hotline’, that was set up for one day only on the 23rd of January to help Brits stick to their New Year’s resolutions. This was following research conducted by Kallo that revealed over half (57%) find it impossible to follow through with their goals.

Images: Unsplash


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Lauren Geall

As Stylist’s digital writer, Lauren Geall writes on topics including mental health, wellbeing and work. She’s also a big fan of houseplants and likes to dabble in film and TV from time-to-time.

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