- the act or process of motivating : Some students need motivation to help them through school.
- the condition of being motivated : employees who lack motivation
- a motivating force, stimulus, or influence : incentive, drive
Some people are born with fierce motivation, they are unstoppable – for the rest of us, motivation is a self discipline. Anyone can sit down and write a list of “life goals”, they can even further describe the steps to take which will make their goal attainable, but then what? The hardest part of getting something done is starting.
How often do you make up your mind to do something: “Ok, this is my last good meal tonight and I’m starting my diet tomorrow, I HAVE to lose 10 lbs.” Does this sound familiar? There is a quote from The War Of Art by Steven Pressfield that states, “At some point, the pain of not doing it becomes greater than the pain of doing it.” At what point of repeating “I’ll start tomorrow” do you realize that you will never start and that you feel worse than the day before? In this post I want to help identify your roadblocks before you get stuck, and help form a detour to your goals!
Am I Doing This Wrong?
There are a lot of misconceptions and personal setbacks when it comes to getting motivated. Most people expect to “get motivated” and immediately hop up and lose 10 lbs, get that perfect job, finish that novel or simply clean the house – that is not how this works. Motivation comes AFTER starting a new behavior or habit, not before! Almost all your friction or frustration occurs at the beginning, after you have decided to start whichever journey you set your eyes on.
You finally decided on a goal – maybe you want to lose weight, or join a direct selling company and transition to working from home. These are great goals; they’re actually goals I have myself. So how do you get started? Do you look up articles on internet forums or YouTube? Do you buy books to read and highlight or maybe catch an inspirational speaker at your local theater? These are all good practices to learning a new trade or how to exercise properly, but more often than not, people get stuck on this phase of their journey. This practice is called passive inspiration: taking in the advice and ideas of other people. You find a great video on how to start your business from a successful entrepreneur and you watched the entire thing! You feel empowered and motivated but you did not actually start your own business. Do not get me wrong, learning is a VITAL part of starting anything new, but equally important to learning is actually executing your plan.
What you are looking for is active inspiration: actually taking your knowledge and starting your business, going outside and marketing or setting up shop at a local trade show to get your name in the community. You can sit and learn everything there is to know about anything, but unless you get up and do work you will never reach that finish line.
There is some debate on how long it takes to develop a habit. Plastic Surgeon, Maxwell Maltz, published a book that asserts 21 days is the magic number to develop a habit. A study by the University College London states 66 days is the magic number to develop a new habit. No matter the number of days, you will not see results tomorrow, and you have to be persistent with your work and goals to succeed. The roadblock is getting started. Once you are well on your way to your goal your body and mind often adapt to the changes you have made. The progress toward your goal will occur naturally, which often makes finishing your task much easier than starting.