One of the most common questions I am asked by clients is about motivation – how to find it, how to keep it and what the secret is to keeping it going. Unfortunately there is no easy answer. Motivation is complicated. Ultimately it is about finding a reason to do something because you really want to and because you even like doing it. This means that no one can give it to you, nor are you likely to wake up with it randomly one morning. Rather it will come when something is really important to you and you start to make positive food decisions and move your body because you want to, not because you have to; think you should or are doing it for someone else. Personally I feel motivated to eat well, control my weight and move my body every day as I know I am at my best when I am lean, fit and energised. I never feel good when I am not eating well, or when I am feeling heavy. When I look in the mirror and feel good I know I am at my best to deal with whatever life is throwing at me. So when I am feeling down or over life, always the easiest thing for me to do to feel better is prepare some healthy food and go for a big walk. Nothing makes me feel as good as this does. So if you are looking for that elusive dose of motivation, here are some things you can actually DO to move you forward.
1. Stop feeling sorry for yourself
No one is blessed with a big hit of motivation. Individuals who are motivated work at it, constantly and consider what they need to do to be at their best, not what someone else can do for them.
2. Do something positive
The simple act of thinking positive and even more of doing something that makes you feel positive – going for a walk, buying some flowers, catching up with a friend can be the easiest way to help you open your mind to opportunities. In the case of diet and exercise motivation this can mean just getting started as the positive feelings that come from that are likely to help you keep motivated and press on.
Keeping motivated to eat well and exercise has a lot to do with accepting this is something most of us need to do on most days for the rest of our lives. The beliefs that things are easy for some or that it is not fair are ultimately just excuses that give us a reason for not doing anything, yet they are not really true.
4. Stop thinking
Motivation to do has a lot to do with putting a stop to the self-talk that keeps holding you back and commit to action only. Simple acts such as cooking a healthy meal or catching up with a friend over a talk are small but powerful actions that will help to move your forward with minimal commitment.
5. Do things you like
One of the biggest mistakes we make when it comes to lifestyle change is that we try and make ourselves do things we don’t want to do. We join a gym even though we hate it; or follow a diet that includes foods that we do not like eating. Motivation will come a lot more readily when you actually like your diet and exercise regime.
If you are struggling with your motivation and would like to take control today, try Shape Me by Susie Burrell for easy to follow meal plans, recipe ideas and diet, motivation and exercise tips to help you feel your best. Sign up today here.