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How do you stay motivated?


Minna

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I think motivation really comes down to the individual, but for me, I try to make it not be about motivation. I kind of think of "motivation" as a built-in excuse: "Well, I don't feel motivated today, so that's why I didn't ___..." or "Well, I had a lot of motivation for the past two weeks, but then I guess I ran out of steam, so..."

 

I have proven to myself that I can go weeks or months on end without feeling "motivated." At a certain point, it kind of clicked that it wasn't working for me and I needed to reframe my mindset, but it took a lot of working up to commitment and then shying away from it for that switch to flip. 

 

So that's what I do now. Instead of "I should work out," or "I have a lot of energy, I guess I can think about my diet today," I just make it a thing that I do. Start slow. I picked a C25K program for running and assigned three mornings of the week (on days that I wfh and a weekend, since I'm that lucky, but pick what works for you) and just do it. Instead of "Well it's Tuesday so I should run today" it becomes "It's Tuesday, I run today." This morning, one of my running days, I woke up and saw it was dumping buckets. We're expecting five inches of rain this weekend, and so far have not been disappointed. But it's a running day, so I'm going out anyway. If you want to frame it in terms of motivation, I guess I tell myself "You'll feel great if you go and you'll hate yourself if you don't" and "you love wandering around in the rain anyway" but those aren't really the reasons I'm going out. 

 

With diet I find it very difficult to set a plan or a set of guidelines and stick to them throughout the week at every single meal (such as, "I'm vegetarian so I don't eat meat," or "I'm paleo so I don't eat processed foods") -- mostly because I just forget, and then it's too late. Instead I do meal prep once a week, and then I can just grab something and go whenever I get hungry. Instead of motivating myself to remember my diet all the time, I only have to remember it once a week, and then I'm all set up for success. It does take a little extra planning, but I think on balance a lot less than planning every day or every meal individually. 

 

Best of luck getting back into your groove! You'll figure it out one way or another. 

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I don't. I try and make everything as much of a habit as possible. For the rest, I make it a commitment and force myself to do it. I have trained in self-discipline last year and have a few tricks - an excuse journal is my favourite for when my brain is being stupid. Basically I write down all the excuses for not doing something and see if they are valid or not. Most of the time they aren't. I can do it in my head in the meanwhile, but it helps to have it written down at first.

Then there is a small trick I learned during a particularly deep depression phase. At the time nobody knew I went through these phases, and I desperately needed to do stuff but it seemed so overwhelming. So I had a small notebook next to my bed and I would break down the task to discrete units. I am using the word discrete because I actually mean it in the computer science definition. Showering would go something like this

 

-Take cover off

-Stand up

-Walk to bathroom

-Turn on water

-Step in water

-Now you're wet

-Put soap in your hair

-Wash hair

-Rinse

 

etc.
 

For every step I'd take I'd cross it off. It gave me a small sense of accomplishment. I've never gone so deep again, but if I have a particularly overwhelming task I will still use this technique and break it down in smaller tasks that seem easier to accomplish. I will do that until I get myself to a point where I cannot just not do what I had set out to do anymore, and at that point I will just do it.

 

Hope that helps!

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Goblin | Level 7 | STR: 4 | DEX: 2 | STA: 3 | CON: 3.5 | WIS: 8 | CHA: 2.5

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For me, it is a matter of the example I set. I have gotten others on this path to better eating, better work outs, hard work, personal sacrifice in the name of bettering one's self. If I skip that workout or eat that piece of candy, how can I expect them to be strong when their urges and weaknesses attack them?

 

Be a leader and an example. Inspire your spouse, children, parents, siblings, friends, co-workers, whoever. Get someone else to do some small part of this, and you can then hold yourself accountable as their example. 

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On 9.1.2017 at 7:33 PM, calanthrophy said:

I've found that whenever I skip the gym or eat stuff I shouldn't or some such my frustration for doing so outweighs any temporary reward.

So basically I just remind myself how pissed I'll be at myself later if I don't do what I'm supposed to.

 

Same here. There's positive and negative motivation, even though often despised, I work better with negative. Either the pain of regret or the pain of doing it, what sucks more and for longer? I can't fool myself into thinking work equals having fun. But it becomes fun every so often automatically anyway - AFTER I have started. Also doing this stuff is like buying peace of mind.

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I am against using motivation because motivation is hard to come by. 

 

What I'd prefer to building a habit, or setting action-based goals. I'll promise myself to do a certain workout for 3-4 days a week and try to keep that habit as much as possible without worrying about the possible outcomes. Essentially, I like to set goals and build habits where I can control things, not when I can't. 

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Once, in my teens, I remember hearing someone say "Live like Samuel L. Jackson is your personal trainer." 

 

Now I can't stop hearing him whenever I don't wanna do something I know I should do.  It makes for interesting motivation.

 

In all seriousness though, I'm also a big advocate for 'screw motivation'.  It's easier to cop a plea to yourself with an "I just don't feel motivated" excuse.  If I know I need to do something, I get it done.  Right away the first minute I can.  It seriously turned me into a morning person because I wake up and generally spring into action.  Once everything is done for the day, I can spend the rest of it doing whatever I want guilt-free.

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Fight your foes in the field, nor be burnt in your house.

 

 

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Oh! Temptation bundling also - working out and cooking are now the only times I allow myself to watch stupid reality shows. I will also often listen to my favouritw podcasts. It makes one really look forward to it. :)

 

Inviato dal mio SM-G930F utilizzando Tapatalk

 

 

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Goblin | Level 7 | STR: 4 | DEX: 2 | STA: 3 | CON: 3.5 | WIS: 8 | CHA: 2.5

Nerdfitness Character, Past challenges: 1 1 2 2 3 4 5 5 6, Current challenge (March 19 - April 15): click

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It helps me having a training partner with similar goals. I know that if I miss a session that my partner will know and will call me out on it.

 

The other thing is keeping the end goal in mind such as wanting to run a 5k or get ready to go on stage in a bodybuilding competition. If you don't put in the work, the results won't happen at all.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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My motivation is very much up and down. Generally I manage to carry on regardless - I suppose it's negative motivation like others have mentioned - I don't want my efforts wasted that I've already put in. I try and do it at relatively regular times like do cardio before I take a shower. Music I find is a good motivator to keep going and I know that overall I want to get to the point where I'm happy with my physique too.

 

Classes and working out with others are a great way to push yourself and using youtube videos can also be pretty effective.

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'A path is made by walking on it'

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Lots and lots of self-talk.  A couple of tricks that sometimes help get me in motion:

 

1. If you're tired of starting over, stop quitting. (and other motivational cliches)

  *Where would I be today, if I'd been consistent last month?  Last year?

  *One step at a time, one rep at a time.

2. Don't confuse emotion with exhaustion.  Being excited and motivated helps, certainly.  But it is absolutely not required in order to get up and do the needful.

  *Some folks have called this "negative motivation" or "discipline" or even "habit" - all are true, but I also think of it as mindfulness, or moving meditation.  Be aware of the feelings that are telling you that you don't want to go, recognize them as emotions and not legitimate reasons (i.e. a broken leg), and go do the needful.  Focus on the activity and let the emotions float by, like clouds in the sky.

3. Don't break the chain.  (http://lifehacker.com/281626/jerry-seinfelds-productivity-secret)

4. Look at pretty pictures.  I have bookmarks of fitness models, muscles flexed, exercise GIFs, videos, whatever.  

  *I enjoy lifting weights, even more now that I'm seeing physical transformations, never mind the primal joy of picking up things, moving them around, and putting them down.

  *The videos and GIFs are a visual reminder of my goals, and get my mind thinking about the activity; I start to visualize myself doing the activity, and the ball starts rolling.

5. Use a log to track workouts.  Little victories, similar to "not breaking the chain" - and having a log of your efforts are a tangible reminder of the effort so far.

 

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4 hours ago, TMedina said:

Lots and lots of self-talk.  A couple of tricks that sometimes help get me in motion:

 

1. If you're tired of starting over, stop quitting. (and other motivational cliches)

  *Where would I be today, if I'd been consistent last month?  Last year?

  *One step at a time, one rep at a time.

2. Don't confuse emotion with exhaustion.  Being excited and motivated helps, certainly.  But it is absolutely not required in order to get up and do the needful.

  *Some folks have called this "negative motivation" or "discipline" or even "habit" - all are true, but I also think of it as mindfulness, or moving meditation.  Be aware of the feelings that are telling you that you don't want to go, recognize them as emotions and not legitimate reasons (i.e. a broken leg), and go do the needful.  Focus on the activity and let the emotions float by, like clouds in the sky.

3. Don't break the chain.  (http://lifehacker.com/281626/jerry-seinfelds-productivity-secret)

4. Look at pretty pictures.  I have bookmarks of fitness models, muscles flexed, exercise GIFs, videos, whatever.  

  *I enjoy lifting weights, even more now that I'm seeing physical transformations, never mind the primal joy of picking up things, moving them around, and putting them down.

  *The videos and GIFs are a visual reminder of my goals, and get my mind thinking about the activity; I start to visualize myself doing the activity, and the ball starts rolling.

5. Use a log to track workouts.  Little victories, similar to "not breaking the chain" - and having a log of your efforts are a tangible reminder of the effort so far.

 

 

 

Oh yes, self talk! SO much self talk!

"Remember the other day you regretted not starting ten years ago? Let's make sure you don't do that again."

"Just get through this exercise. You never have to do it again if you do not have to."
"Let's just get out of the door, ok? Now you are outside, why not run?"

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Goblin | Level 7 | STR: 4 | DEX: 2 | STA: 3 | CON: 3.5 | WIS: 8 | CHA: 2.5

Nerdfitness Character, Past challenges: 1 1 2 2 3 4 5 5 6, Current challenge (March 19 - April 15): click

Tough Mudder Ireland || Battle for Graduation || My Neverending Story (on hiatus)

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