By Manisha Rewani
Where there’s no will, there’s no way. One of the best ways to improve your personal effectiveness is to master your motivation and find your drive.
If you can master motivation, you can deal with life’s setbacks, as well as inspire yourself to always find a way forward, and create new experiences for yourself, and follow your growth.
Story of Sudha Murthy
As the famous saying goes, “Behind every successful man is a woman,” behind Narayana Murthy, IT industrialist and co-founder of Infosys, is Sudha Murthy, his wife. Sudha Murthy was born in Shiggaon in northern Karnataka, India, and is the daughter of a renowned surgeon Dr R H Kulkarni.
Sudha Murthy was an outstanding student. She completed her B.E. in Electrical Engineering from the B.V.B. College of Engineering and Technology, where she stood first in her class and received a gold medal from the Chief Minister of Karnataka.
She then pursued M.E. in Computer Science from the Indian Institute of Science, where she once again stood first in the class. Upon her completion of her Master’s course, she received a gold medal from the Indian Institute of Engineers.
Sudha Murthy was hardworking and determined to succeed in her studies, which is why she emerged a topper in both her undergraduate and postgraduate studies. After graduation, Sudha Murthy was hired by TATA Engineering and Locomotive Company, also known as TELCO, and she was the first female engineer in the company.
She earned her rightful place in the company after sent a postcard to the chairman of the company, complaining of “men only” gender bias at TELCO. Sudha Murthy believes in meritocracy, which is why she fought discrimination in the Indian society to pave a path for capable women in the country.
At every stage in our lives, we come across immense challenges and various forms of discrimination. But that should not discourage us from performing our best. We should be determined and strive to achieve success despite the obstacles we face in life. And we should have the courage to fight and eradicate policies that may stifle the growth of our country. These are some of the lessons that we can learn from Sudha Murthy.
1. Connect to your values.
This is the ultimate secret. If you can connect the work you do to your values, even in small ways, you can change your game.
One of my values is learning and growth.
I find ways to grow my skills in any situation. For example, I don’t just “call back a customer.” I “win a raving fan.” I don’t just “do a task.” I “master my craft.” I don’t just “get something done.” I “learn something new.”
2. Find your WHY
Figure out a compelling purpose. Turn this into a one-liner.
For example, when I fall off the horse, I remind myself I’m here to “make others great.” This gets me back on track, sharing the best of what I know.
3. Change your WHY
Sometimes you’re doing things for the wrong reason. Are you doing that task to get it done, or to learn something new? Just shifting your why can light your fire.
4. Change your HOW
You can instantly find your tasks more enjoyable by shifting from getting them done, to doing them right.
Sometimes slower is better. Other times, the key is to make it a game and actually speed it up. You can set time limits and race against the clock. Changing your how can get you out of ruts and find new ways to escape the mundane.
5. Remember the feeling
Flipping through your head movies and scenes is one of the fastest ways to change how you feel.
Remember the feeling. How did you feel during your first kiss? What about laying on the grass on a sunny day?
When you feel good, you find your motivation faster.
6. Shift to past, present or the future
Sometimes you need to be here, now. Sometimes, the right here, right now sucks. The beauty of shifting tense is you can visualize a more compelling future, or remember a more enjoyable past.
At the same time, if you catch yourself dwelling on a painful past, get back to right here, right now, and find the joy in the moment.
7. Find a meaningful metaphor
Find a metaphor that fuels you. Maybe you’re the “Little Engine that Could.” Maybe you’re “in your element.”
The most powerful thing you can do is find a metaphor that connects to your values. This is why I turn my projects into “epic adventures.”
8. Take actions
Here’s a secret that once you know it, can change your life. Action often comes before motivation.
You simply start doing an activity and then your motivation kicks in. Nike was right with “Just do it.” For example, I don’t always look forward to my workout, but once I start, I find my flow.
9. Link it to good feelings
Find a way to link things to good feelings. For example, play your favorite song when you’re doing something you don’t like to do.
It has to be a song that makes you feel so great that it overshadows the pain of the task. It’s hard to tell yourself you don’t like something when it feels so good.
10. Impress yourself first
This is how people like Peter Jackson or James Cameron or Stephenie Meyer inspire themselves. They make the movies or write the books that impress themselves first. They connect their passion to the work and they don’t depend on other people setting the bar. Their internal bar becomes their drive.
Manisha Rewani [MBA]
AirCrews Aviation Pvt. Ltd