Time and motivation.
By far, those are the 2 biggest struggles I hear from the moms I coach and the moms in my audience. I’m always getting asked how do I find the time to do my workouts and how can I stay motivated to see it through?
Those 2 questions do not have easy answers. Well, actually a written answer would be super easy. Just do it, right? But putting it into practice is easier said than done.
So, this blog is going to tackle the motivation part, and I’ll leave the “finding time” part for another day.
In helping you find that motivation you need, I thought I’d give you three examples of how I keep myself motivated. Every day. Almost. Sort of. Unless I’m not. lol. Seriously, it’s a battle even for me! So… my best advice about motivation? Forget it. You don’t need it.
Yep. Seriously. You don’t need motivation to achieve your fitness goals. Here are my 3 secrets to success (in anything – not just exercise) that require zero motivation:
Secret #1: I don’t “stay motivated.” I stay consistent.
Do you see the difference? Consistency trumps motivation. If you come home from work and make dinner for your family and then put the kids to bed and then start the laundry and clean the kitchen and then collapse on the couch, the LAST THING you’re motivated to do at that point is workout. There are very few who feel super motivated to get up off the couch, get their rear into their workout clothes and bust out a 30-minute cardio session.
BUT, if you DECIDE to do it and create a habit of doing it consistently, that will trump whether you want to do it or not. Because I’ve found that consistency is a better driver than motivation. Motivation is a feeling (they change like the wind). Consistency is a habit. Habits can become ironclad whether you “feel” like doing something or not. You can overcome wishy-washy feelings with habitual consistency.
I, for one, hate to break a winning streak. So, If I’ve consistently worked out for a solid week, and then on day 8 I feel grumpy and lazy and want to quit, I’ll do my workout anyway, even if I don’t feel motivated to do it because I don’t want to undo all the good stuff I’ve done in the past week and break my consistent streak.
So, to sum up secret 1, think of being consistent with your workouts instead of staying motivated to do them. Create habits. Habits stick better than trying to keep up a constant “motivated” emotion.
Secret 2: I stay accountable to someone else.
But not just anyone else. Someone I trust and respect, someone who knows a ton more than me, and someone who will kick my rear if I mess up, give up, or complain too much.
Bottom line – when a lack of motivation makes you want to quit being consistent, accountability will have your back. It’s your collateral, your back-up plan, your genie in the lamp. Do not think you can make any sort of transformation without accountability. A coach will be your golden ticket to success. Even coaches have coaches! I have a coach. Two, actually.
Secret #3: I write stuff down.
I write my goals on sticky notes and hang them on my bathroom mirror. And the refrigerator. My goals stare me in the face every single day. There’s something powerful about actually “looking” at the goal you want to accomplish. It makes your goal come to life. Makes it real, makes it attainable. Seeing your goals in written form keeps them fresh in your mind and helps create a vision. It helps you to actually visualize and “see” the result you’re reaching for. Sort of like a baby that cries at 2 am, a written-down goal staring you in the face is unavoidable and can crush lack-of-motivation like nothing else.
In a nutshell – it’s really not an excuse to say you lack the motivation to work out, to eat right, to do your core/pelvic floor work, etc. Motivation is simply an emotion. You need a more concrete plan than being motivated because, like all feelings, motivation is oh-so-fleeting. No successful person is 100% motivated. But they are 100% consistent, accountable, and visionary.
Replace motivation in your life and your vocabulary with consistency, accountability, and visionary, and you’ll be unstoppable.