Motivation. We hear about, we’re told that we need to have it, but in the end, we feel deflated when we can’t seem to make it stick around. Lucky for you, we’re always thinking of ways to make healthy living EASIER, more ENJOYABLE and full of self-improvement opportunities. So today we’re diving into the two types of motivation, and while they are very different … they are also both very necessary. But first, let us make this clear …

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Motivation is what gets you started – commitment is what keeps you going. 

In the beginning, it’s really exciting. Your new workout threads, fresh jams on your playlist, a community of supportive people that rally around you like the rockstar you are. You’re working hard and getting it done day after day. Your endorphin glow shines from within and people keep asking “what’s different?” (but in a good way).

Then … dun dun dun … the honeymoon period starts to wax and wane. Suddenly your bed feels way more exciting than your workout and that tub of Ben and Jerry’s is whispering sweet nothings in the wee hours of the night. You miss one workout, eat one unhealthy meal … and then another … and another. Until you’re back to square one and wondering what the heck happened.

Before you go berating yourself thinking you’re on a lonely I-lost-my-motivation planet of ONE, understand that this process of self-sabotage is a REAL thing for A LOT of people. Basically, you get bored and convince yourself that a life of “easy” is better than putting in some work to thrive. And so you go back to feeling sick because the longer you do the more you forget how you felt when you were better. Laid out like this it sounds nuts, but this is what happens, folks. Motivation got you started, but somewhere along the way that wasn’t enough. You need something deeper than just “I want to lose ten pounds”. That’s great! But that won’t motivate you long term. What will keep you going is the commitment, AKA INTERNAL MOTIVATION!


External Motivation

Leaner, lose weight, toned, get stronger, six pack abs, swimsuit season; these are all buzz words and phrases that embody external motivation. Don’t get us wrong: having goals is great! But surface goals will only keep you motivated for so long (think 2-3 months). Sooner or later you’re going to need a deeper “why” to keep you going on the rainiest, busiest, craziest of days when you’ve stayed super late at work and had the worst day ever and still haven’t gotten your workout in but know that you need to keep that promise to yourself. We like to think of external motivation as the ferry that takes you to Commitment Island. The two go hand in hand and it’s impossible to have one without the other unless you want to do a lot of swimming to get there. Examples of external motivation:

      • Losing weight for a specific event.
      • Wanting to look leaner and toned for swimsuit season.
      • Exercising so you can fit into a certain outfit.
      • Following a healthy eating/fitness plan so you can splurge on the weekends (we don’t recommend this, but it’s a common practice so we’re including it as external motivation).
      • Seeking the attention of others as they start to notice your weight loss efforts.

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External motivation is GREAT for short term goals, but not so much for long-term. External motivation, in the beginning, is very helpful; it creates momentum and sets the stage for future success. So does positive reinforcement from others – this is a very powerful motivator by itself. But, as you can see, the stuff above can get old pretty quick … and what will you do when it does? The key is to not think of external motivation as your long term goal achievement strategy.


Internal Motivation

So you’ve made it. The ferry has dropped you off on Commitment Island. It’s here that the soul searching begins and where you discover your “why”. Some of the whys we’ve encountered over the years:
 
  • Medication elimination and/or reduction. You take a pill for another pill’s side effects for another pill’s side effects and it just goes on and on. What if you could eliminate or reduce medication with lifestyle changes and also feel better than you have in years?
  • Chronic disease management. We often work with, and Christina has an autoimmune disease. This is where your body mistakes healthy tissue for invaders and sends all the troops to attack. Getting disease under control is like discovering a whole new way of living. You don’t have to wake up each day wondering what issue is going to plague you next.
  • Live a longer life that is functional. Getting older doesn’t have to suck. Seriously! It doesn’t have to mean endless aches, pains, and ailments. Most of these issues are a by-product of poor lifestyle choices. We cannot stress enough: you don’t know how sick you are until you’re better. There are plenty of people who exercise, eat clean and THRIVE well into their 80s, 90s and beyond. The key is to be proactive and start making healthy choices NOW. Doing so will set the stage for a wonderful life in your later years (and of course now, too!).
  • Achieve to the best of your abilities. Do you want to run a half or full marathon? Participate in a challenging obstacle course? Hike to the top of a mountain? All of these things you want to achieve in life will take preparation and dedication that far exceeds initial goal setting. When your “why” is deeper than weight loss, showing up for your workout takes on a whole new meaning. It can literally be the bridge toward your Personal Records in everything you set out to achieve.
  • Be a good role model for your child so they can grow up and live a healthy life, too. It’s no secret: kids notice EVERYTHING, including unhealthy habits. What you teach them now through your actions will impact them for the rest of their life. If you eat clean, exercise and live a mindful and healthy life, this will have a profound impact on your child’s life and the decisions they make as they get older. In essence, you are passing down healthy habits from generation to generation; yes, please!

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It’s important to be realistic and understand that living a healthy lifestyle is not something that’s going to happen overnight. Even still, in a recent study, the single greatest indicator of success with any program is the individual’s motivation. Once you figure out what drives you, what really drives you at your core, you can and will be successful long term.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s blog and feel empowered to master your life one goal at a time. If you’re seeking, even more, support, don’t forget about Season 11 of our Cleanse30 Nutrition, Fat Loss and Lifestyle challenge coming up. Embark on a journey with 25 other motivated people just like you – get on the waiting list here!

Want to dive even deeper? We’ve opened up two spots in our Lifestyle Transformation Academy. This is a comprehensive six-month program for those who are ready to make the BIG change. You can go here to complete and application.

Talk Soon,
 
Sham & Christina
Inspired Wellness


References: http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/1900510


About Inspired Wellness
We are a wellness movement aimed at cultivating greatness in all areas of life. We believe that everything is connected and that having the body of your dreams shouldn’t come at the price of your mental and emotional health. You CAN have it all; you just need some determination, grit and the desire to truly change your life!

Catch us locally in sunny Sacramento CA inspiring lives at our wellness center with fitness, nutrition and lifestyle programs, or online doing the same thing with our new online training site + community coming soon!

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