If you rely on motivation, you’ll fail.
The idea of motivation is deceiving. You won’t hit some special point in your life when you’ll feel motivated and everything will become so much easier. No one walks around motivated all the time. Even the most “motivated” people probably don’t feel motivated more often than not.
Some days you just feel like crap. You’re tired, work is crazy busy, the weather sucks, nothing seems to be going right. You aren’t going to feel motivated.
The truth is, the more stressed out you are the less brain power you’ll have to generate “motivation”.
Your brain power is finite and often you’ll use it up during the day making all sorts of decisions, even including seemingly simple choices like what to wear to work or what route to take when driving the kids to school. Add a stressful day into the mix and by the time you get home, you can’t be bothered making healthy choices – you go with what’s easy and comforting.
When it all hits the fan, you aren’t going to be able to rely on motivation.
The good news is that you can still get results even if you don’t feel motivated.
How Bad Do You Want It?
The key to success is in how bad you want it.
For example, I really want to have a successful business. Do I feel motivated to work more than 12 hours everyday? To miss out on relaxing weekends so I can catch up on work? To have to say no more often than not when friends ask me to do something? Of course not. I’d much rather work 9 to 5 and binge watch Netflix and hang out with loved ones on the weekend.
What keeps me going? Or you might ask – what “motivates” me?
I don’t want to work for someone else or to have a job I don’t really care about. I’ve been there and I know I can never go there again. It’s so unbelievably hard being an entrepreneur but I truly love what I do and I have a vision for my business and life that keeps me going.
Fitness and nutrition works the same way. You might not always want to go to the gym or to eat well – but if you want to change your body/health bad enough – you have to do it anyway.
I don’t always want to go to the gym. Actually a lot of days I don’t want to go at all. It takes extreme effort to get myself out the door. Sound familiar?
On those kind of days, you need to remember why you are doing it. How much do you want to change your body? Hold that feeling – that desire for change – forefront in your mind and it will be the driving force that gets you to the gym (or to eat well, etc).
The Takeaway Message:
Focus on how much you want it because I guarantee you – even if you don’t feel motivated – there’s something you want badly enough to get up off the couch and into the gym or to start eating better.
Practice Tough Love
Why do we force our kids to finish their homework or to eat their veggies? Because they don’t want to do it but we know it’s good for them.
It can work the same way when it comes to going to the gym or to making better food choices. You might not feel like training after a long day, but if you force yourself to go to the gym, once you are through the door you’ll start feeling better. It might be hard to say no to the cake at coffee break, but if really want to achieve your goals, sometimes you’ll have to force yourself.
Sometimes I have to literally force myself to get into my gym clothes and drag myself out the door. If I only went when I felt motivated, I’d miss a lot of workouts.
If you don’t feel motivated that’s perfectly ok. In fact, it’s better if you expect to not feel motivated. Why?
Because I think a lot of women fail with fitness and nutrition because they expect to feel motivated and are disappointed and make poor choices when they don’t.
Don’t let lack of motivation be your excuse and the reason you don’t get results.
You’ve got to take control and step up when motivation doesn’t.
Practice some tough love with yourself and eventually it will start getting easier.
The Takeaway Message:
If you only do things that are good for you when you feel motivated, you’ll never get results. Sometimes you just have to force yourself to do things or to make better choices.
It’s Not About Motivation
I wrote this post because too often I hear from clients who are struggling to follow through with their nutrition and exercise because they lack motivation.
I hope I’ve convinced you that it’s not all about motivation. Actually you are better off not relying on motivation.
If you wait until you feel motivated, you’ll never get what you want because motivation is unreliable. It comes and goes and it always waits for the perfect circumstances.
Stop waiting to feel motivated. Focus instead on generating momentum.
One foot in front of the other, bit by bit do what needs to be done – whether it’s food prep or going to the gym or whatever else you need to do to step things up in life.
A lot of times it’s going to suck and you won’t feel like doing it. DO IT ANYWAY.