I recently saved this quote I saw on Instagram. I have changed the language so nobody gets offended, but it goes something like this:
It’s fickle and unreliable and isn’t worth your time. Better to cultivate habits than to rely on motivation.
Force yourself to do things.
Force yourself to get out of bed and practice.
Force yourself to work.
Motivation is fleeting and easy to rely on because it requires no concentrated effort to get.
Motivation comes to you, you don’t even have to chase after it.
Habits are reliable, motivation is fleeting.
As we start a new calendar year, I’m once again reminded of how we seem to lose our collective mind the first week of January. We’ve all slowed down a little to enjoy the holidays with friends and family. We maybe had a little too much to eat, too much wine, one too many Christmas cookies, and everything goes out the window. Now my social media feeds are full of motivational quotes, diet plans, gym bathroom selfies, and endless sales pitches for that ONE weight loss supplement that’s going to change your life forever.
We’ve all seen (and been) that person. So excited to change. So excited about what this new year can bring. So MOTIVATED to make this year the best one ever. All of that is fine. Motivation is a great feeling. The problem comes when it’s January 13th, it’s cold outside, you didn’t sleep well, and now you’re not motivated to go to the gym. You’re not motivated to cook breakfast. You’re not motivated to follow through on all those promises you made to yourself. You know it’s okay, though, because you’ll get there tomorrow. But tomorrow comes, and then the kids need a ride to school, you need to be to work early, and there’s NO WAY you’re getting out of your warm bed to go do burpees.
So what do you do? Wait for the next time motivation strikes? Just hope that somehow eating well and exercising will magically become a habit? I’m here to tell ya it’s not gonna happen.
That mom at the gym that’s lost 40 pounds and can do pushups isn’t genetically blessed. She didn’t get those pushups by talking herself out of burpees. She didn’t lose 40 pounds by skipping breakfast and hitting the drive through at Starbucks everyday. Nope. She did it by showing up. One day at a time. One pushup at a time. One meal at a time. She did it by blocking out time each week to take care of herself. She found a place with like-minded people who support, encourage, and cheer on her efforts. Those like-minded people who are also business owners, homeschool moms, nurses, teachers, students, and accountants. Most of whom have full time jobs, kids, husbands/wives, households to run, and friends to stay in touch with.
In fact you won’t find a single person at our gym that’s had an easy life. Not one person will credit motivation for their success. So if you’re feeling motivated, great! Use that motivation to take that first step in the door. But if you want lasting change, you’re going to have to work for it. But it’s okay, because you’re worth it and you don’t have to do it alone.