Motivation is the “why” behind our choices. As individuals, we are all influenced and motivated by different things. Some are internal. Some are external.
Sometimes we understand why we make certain decisions. Sometimes, we are on auto-pilot.
Weight loss and health are no different. People often wonder how to get or stay motivated. One key thing to remember is that motivation levels can vary.
Motivation is not constant. It can be overridden by day-to-day life.
Life can present stressful moments that put a damper on our moods, energy and willpower. Some days will be absolutely amazing, while others may require more energy than you feel that you can muster.
When this happens, it is important to remember that it is normal.
For this reason, building healthy habits , as well as developing discipline and consistency are important.
While we may not be able to always feel motivated, during these times, we can rely on the habits that we build to carry us through, rather than giving in to the allure of “when I feel like it”.
Even as a trainer, there are times when I am tired, stressed, overwhelmed and I don’t always make it to the gym like I had planned.
Times when my energy is nonexistent.
Times when I am so trapped in my thoughts and business that I become SO confined…to my computer, to my books, to my drive, that the motivation to do anything outside of those things feels unattainable.
In those instances , it isn’t about being motivated to workout. It is about being motivated to get out:
Out of my head …
Out of my fears…
Out of my anxiety…
Out of my “brain cage” ….
Another trap that we can fall into is waiting to feel motivated. I’ve succumbed to this on many occasions. At my worst, after going to the gym faithfully, one day I didn’t feel like it.
That day turned into a week…which turned into months. It was almost a year before I went back. Even now, sometimes, I have to drag myself into the gym. On those days, I focus on doing the basics and congratulate myself for just going at all.
That, too, is normal.
Finally, but certainly not the last tool in the box, develop and include a social support system. This may be friends, family, social media or your personal trainer/coach.
When I first started my own weight loss journey, I bought a FITBITdownloaded the app, joined a Fitbit Facebook group and connected with other likeminded individuals.
I entered daily and weekly Fitbit competitions with strangers and I had a blast. We were able to help and support each other.
I still use it with clients and friends.
Takeaways and strategies:
Are you tired, stressed, anxious?
Stress can make things more difficult
Do not judge yourself if you can’t seem to get going
Make “micro-goals” and accomplish something small…the little things add up
Do not wait to “feel” motivated
Journal and challenge your thoughts
Establish a support system
Set realistic goals that you can attain
Remember why you started and where you want to go
Weigh the pros and cons of staying where you are
Identify things that you enjoy and use your strengths to accomplish those things