Motivation is something not everyone has all the time, nor is it something we can snap our fingers and instantly receive. However, motivation is attainable; everyone can get/gain more of it. I want to discuss five ways to boost motivation and keep it firing for a successful health journey.
We will see how Vision, Intention, Schedule, Action and Routine can support us in acquiring the motivation we need to keep working towards goals and accepting opportunities for growth!
1. Vision: The fuel to get your motivation running!
Having a vision and plan is important! Imagine you are trying to get to a destination that you have never heard of. Maybe, Yemeni Village Restaurant in Calgary (for example). Imagine driving through Calgary for the first time with no directions. No map, app or shotgun rider telling you the way to go. Chances are you will probably never get there and you may struggle to find your bearings. Now imagine if you had the exact directions and a game plan in place to arrive at your destination right one time. You would more than likely get there because you had a vision of what and where you needed to go and a plan to execute! It is just like your vision/goal, the clearer the directions and game plan are, the better chance we will get to our destination!
Take some time now to reflect on the questions below to help solidify your vision.
- What do you want? _____________________________
- What do you want your life to look like in the next:
What kind of relationship do you want with your health/fitness journey? _____________________________
Journaling is a tool that has helped me immensely! I recommend journaling daily. Write down your vision on something, a notebook, the notes app on your phone, or sticky notes. Writing down your vision every day will help you get there; it’s like having the directions to the destination with us every step of the journey! There is no way to get lost now!!
2. Intention: Give your vision its meaning
Imagine being on a boat with no motor. It’s possible you may never leave the shoreline or make your way across the lake without one. Without a motor, you may end up just floating, not really going anywhere. Not having an intention is like sitting in a boat with no motor- we don’t want to float through life, we want to LIVE life.
How can you bring intention into your routine? Ask yourself, am I just going through the motions, floating my way through life? How can you bring intention to everything you do? What do you want to accomplish and how do you want to feel in your environment, with your workouts, your dinners with your family, at work, etc?
When you put intention behind the things you do, you will
- Enjoy it more and
- Get more out of it.
What will make today a success? Asking yourself questions like these are great prompts to add you your journaling or goal-creating endeavours.
3. Schedule: Get yourself organized!
Having a consistent daily schedule is very helpful to feel confident in your ability to achieve your goals. Do you plan out your day or week?
Try focusing on your personal schedule (one that works for your unique life/lifestyle) and what needs to be done to see your vision through.
I know when some people hear the word schedule, it gets them to feel overwhelmed just at the thought. The sentence “I don’t have enough time” may be said often. I know I have been a victim of this excuse! Especially for parents! Try not to use your kids as an excuse; your kids may be the reason you want to create the life you deserve. (This could be your why or your purpose for accomplishing your vision/goal.)
We need to remind ourselves that this schedule doesn’t need to be jammed-packed or executed perfectly; it is a tool we can use to feel confident in what comes next. Scheduling your day to fit you and your goals is a skill, so don’t worry about mastering it right away, practice makes progress!
How to start creating a schedule:
Step one: Get a calendar/whiteboard- have something you are able to write on and see clearly every day.
To make it less overwhelming, start by keeping track of everything you do from hour to hour during the upcoming week with the schedule below. Example include:
- Wake-up time/ morning routine
- Scrolling through social media/TV
- Kids’ activities
Once you have completed documenting your week, reflect on how it went.
- Is there anything in your schedule you can hand off/tag the team?
- Is there anything you can reduce/eliminate?
- What are the must-haves?
I know that most people’s lifestyles are hectic with a lot of priorities; it would be unrealistic to cut back on everything that we do in our day. So how can we optimize our time? How can we chunk tasks/ activities together so we feel both satisfied and accomplished with our day? For example, can you listen to your favourite podcast or catch up on the news while driving, working out, or cooking?
Can your kids help with the gardening or the lunch making, so you can all spend quality time with one another while completing important tasks?
Now that you have figured out what a typical week may look like for you and have reflected on your priorities/optimizing your time, you’re ready to create your new and informed schedule this week!
What do you need to prioritize?
What can be optimized?
What is not needed?
What can be added to provide some fun or relaxation
- Time with friends/family
- Creating space for hobbies/leisure
4. Action: Push start to drive!
Just start! Get your body moving! YES, this seems simple right?! But I get it, it’s not so easy to take action after a long day of work. Maybe you have been scrolling through your favourite social media platform checking out what happened that day to only realize that almost an hour has gone by. I am sure you have been there, I know I have! So let’s start small in order to get your body moving.
When you are unmotivated, taking action is the most difficult thing to do or so it feels at the time. So it is super helpful to work through steps the motivating boosting step-one through three- for an action-focused headspace! The action builds momentum. Remember Newton’s First Law of Motion. Newton’s first law states that every object will remain at rest or in uniform motion in a straight line unless compelled to change its state by the action of an external force. So basically inaction will lead to more inaction and action will lead to more action. So move that body! Again, start small, maybe just start with standing up and jogging on the spot. You don’t need to do a full workout routine, just start with something small. The countdown rule/Mel Robbins 5 Second Rule applies greatly here!
5. Routine: Guarantees a destination
Do you have a set routine? Maybe a morning or night routine? Once your schedule is in place and we have accepted to take action, it’s time to make these steps into a routine!
Taking action consistently and sticking to your schedule with your vision in mind will create a routine. It is so much easier to build a solid routine with small daily habits/actions. It doesn’t have to be 20 things. It can be one or two things to start your day, creating that routine. If there are a few things you have been wanting to add to your routine, simplify it and start with just one new habit tomorrow. An easy way of creating a new habit is by attaching it to an existing habit! Creating a habit of drinking more water in the morning, could be attached to brushing your teeth. After you brush your teeth, drink a glass of water- a habit created!
If you have a vision, intention, a schedule, take action and a routine. Would you feel more motivated and less lazy?
I hope the answer is “YES!”
Grab your journal- homework time!!
Jot down your answers.
- Where do you want to be in 12 months/5 years/10 years? What do you want your life to look like? What’s your vision?
- What intentions do you need to set daily? How can you be more intentional with everything you do?
- Is your daily schedule set up so you can be successful in working towards your vision?
- What actions do you need to accomplish daily? How will you take the first step?
- What routines do you need to create?
We all will be somewhere in 10 years. The action you take today will decide where you are in 10 years. If something doesn’t change, you will be where you are right now. Remember you are worth making positive changes, your family is worth it too! We can’t let the lack of motivation keep us down. Set yourself up for success and boost that motivation through having a clear vision, setting the right intentions, creating a schedule, taking action and solidifying routines!
Photo By: David Ford