Woke up this morning and stood for awhile looking out my bedroom window where the jogging trail is, contemplating the concept of motivation and how useless it is. I was wishy-washy about going for a run, but I kinda wanted to and it was a beautiful morning and I knew the dogs would love it, so I stopped thinking about it and asked the dogs if they wanted to go for walkies – then I’m committed because they’re so excited and I can’t disappoint them by not following through! I knew I’d be getting some kind of exercise this morning, it was just a matter of what. I’ve gotten myself in the habit of working out one way or another at the same time every morning save one (rest is just as important!). I don’t give myself the choice of not doing it, so it’s easy.
I hear so many people talk about wanting to be more motivated to do something they think would be good for themselves, and I’m often asked if I can do something hypnosis-wise to help motivate them. To me this is the wrong question. I remember my mentor coach telling us that there wasn’t a single one of his high-achieving clients who wanted to do everything that was good for them every day. The difference between them and the rest of us is that they didn’t give themselves a choice. They made it part of their job.
If there is something you want to do regularly but are having trouble doing it, it isn’t a matter of motivation. Where does the notion come from – does the real you want to do it or did someone tell you you should do it? If it’s truly important to you, you’ll do it. When you give yourself a choice and excuse your lack of follow-through by telling yourself you’re not motivated enough, there’s something blocking you from really wanting to do it. Your brain is blocking it to protect you somehow, and reprogramming that can allow you to make the positive activity part of your job of being a healthy, happy human being – no motivation required.
So next time you criticize yourself as not motivated enough, I’d encourage you to get to the real issue by listening to the real you (you can hear it when you’re quiet and not talking to yourself ). How important is it to you, really? When you tell yourself you should do it, it is your voice or someone else’s? Your lack of follow-through is not a weakness, it’s your brain doing its job – you’re just not listening to what it’s trying to tell you. See yourself as not following through with it because it’s wrong somehow. Either you don’t really want it, or you need to remove a protective block that your clever brain put in place that may have served you once but perhaps isn’t anymore and can be reprogrammed. You’re not unmotivated, you’re protecting yourself. Find out why, let go of what isn’t serving you and move on with your life unencumbered by the self-criticism. And send love to your brain for looking out for you.