Fear and uncertainty can make it hard to envision what a better year will look like or to have the motivation to do anything about it. In order to truly embrace and learn from this question, we must (personally and collectively) learn how to overcome fear and uncertainty that so many people are feeling. This doesn’t mean ignoring challenges, it just means acknowledging them, and CHOOSING to move forward. Even if the direction or outcome isn’t clear yet.
Here’s a note I got from a client that speaks clearly to the challenges that many people are facing:
It has been a tough couple of years (layoff, loss, illness, depression?), lately, it has been difficult to focus on setting goals, and getting/staying motivated/committed to an eating plan or workout program. There always seems to be something that gets in the way of eating right and working out. My inner dialogue lets me come up with ‘logical’ excuses for not focusing on myself. How can I stay motivated to do what’s right for me? Thanks!
I’ve covered all of these specific tips to overcome these challenges in other posts. Including shifting mindsets from “working out” and “committing an eating plan” to moving your body for happiness and positivity and choosing to consume real food that nourishes your body. But, the motivation question is something that almost everyone faces at some point.
Answering this motivation question is also key to learning from the past year and moving forward positively into the new year.
People are trying to “find” motivation, happiness, or some other type of fulfillment outside of themselves. Yet, these things are already within us.
They simply ebb and flow at various points in time based on our current circumstances. Tapping into them requires a shift in perspective and taking ownership over your role in creating health, happiness, motivation, and success in your life.
How do someone who’s faced unimaginable hardship and harrowing circumstances find happiness, while someone who seems to “have it all” is constantly unhappy?
It’s because happiness isn’t an endpoint. It’s a state of mind that comes from making small, positive choices and changes each day to your mindset, actions, and environment.
Happiness doesn’t mean we are devoid of pain, challenge, frustration, or failure. It means that we choose to view these situations from a different perspective.
This perspective encompasses the ability to envision a better future while seeing that our mindset and actions can contribute to making that future a reality. It is directly tied to our motivation.
So what does this mean for you?
It means that if you aren’t currently “happy or motivated”, there are specific actions you can take to change your reality.
It’s also important to note that we all have a slightly different “set point” for where our “average” sits on the motivation/happiness spectrum.
Some of this is genetically based and is just “who we are”. However, that genetic component is only PART of the equation.
The flip side is that the rest of the equation is completely within your control. It’s the whole nature/nurture debate.
Regardless of what portion you think each one contributes, there’s no debate that BOTH contributes. That means there is ALWAYS an opportunity for you to drive your actions and create the outcomes you want in life.
Will it be easy…likely not. Will it be worthwhile? Definitely!
Here are a few simple tips to get (and stay) motivated during tough times:
- Write down the top reasons WHY you are working towards your goals
- Set small (almost laughably small) goals each day that keep you moving in the right direction
- Each day, schedule work time, relaxation time, and ACTIVITY time. (Make an appointment with yourself)
- Schedule virtual hangouts with friends and family
- Prioritize your mental health. Remember that daily physical activity (especially light or moderate) has an enormously positive impact on mental health.
- Set realistic expectations about your performance and productivity. Tough times will likely mean you are less productive than normal.
When you are in the thick of a “down” phase in life, it can be tempting to dismiss these tips as “too simple” or to think that “my situation is different”.
While we all have unique circumstances, the tips mentioned above are universally applicable.
Happiness and motivation require a purpose. Do the work to find yours.
And get help if needed. Our team will be more than happy to guide you!
Small daily steps in a positive direction are the foundation of success.
Even if that’s getting out of bed, walking up and down the stairs in your house a few times. Or texting a friend to reconnect. These positive steps add up to MUCH greater change and demonstrate the control you have over your daily actions and outcomes.
I can’t stress the importance of getting help enough. Whether it’s formally or informally. We ALL benefit from social interaction, external accountability, and the understanding of someone who’s genuinely looking out for our wellbeing.
Are you ready to live with more passion, purpose, health, and happiness?
Then, enroll in one of our online, on-demand workshops, and let’s get you started on your way to a successful year!