What happens to Motivation?
As many of you know, it has been a crazy start of the year for me. But lately, that isn’t what’s bothering me. What’s bothering me is my apparent lack of motivation and discipline to working on my business. I am typically a very focused and organized person. I can see what needs to be done and decisively make it happen. But lately, I seem to be more focused on excuses for my lack of inactivity than on generating productive outcomes. At times, I would rather clean the toilet with a toothbrush then make calls designed to get myself booked.
Has this ever happened to you? You wake up one day and wonder just where you wandered off the motivation path?
The truth is, it takes effort to be successful and most of us would rather coast (contemplate) our way into a better life (or a better income). However, until we get up off of our butt and start doing, nothing powerful or awe-inspiring is going to happen. For example: knowing I am a good speaker and an insightful coach is not enough to get my calendar booked. The phone has to ring for that to happen. Being wonderful but invisible is simply not an effective booking system. And trust me, my time walking the dogs and daydreaming through Facebook isn’t either.
Contemplation is for bringing about focus and clarity of purpose – it tells us what we are going to do when we stand up. It’s not that we aren’t staying busy, it is just that we are not busy doing anything constructive.
There are a few key reasons that motivation evades us (I am sure there are others, but this list should get us started):
Lack of Focus: Distraction happens when one is not clear on what is wanted. Often we become so busy with the task of doing little things that we lose perspective on the reason for actually doing them.
Limiting Beliefs: Do you believe with every fibre of your being that you are going to achieve your objectives? It is going to happen; there are no hiccups; there are no maybes. Too often, when asked that question, our answer is NO. When you are focused on your passions, it is easier to expect things to happen.
Getting too Comfortable: No animal ever came up to the Neanderthal’s villa and said, “Hey bud, time to kill me so you have food for next week. Get off your butt and grab your spear…geesh.” Success doesn’t come knocking at your door. It just does not happen. Not when you are awake, at least.
Poor Habits: Habit can be an enemy of success OR it can be the backbone for achieving success. One of the most difficult things to do is to stop a bad habit. And then of course…another extremely difficult thing to do is to start a good habit. Now combine those and try to stop a bad habit and start a good habit at the same time. These are two decisions where a lot of effort will be required which is why we settled for comfortable in the first place.
Resistance: Resistance can be a good thing. But it’s not a good thing when you are trying to achieve something. Resistance can be seen through behaviors such as procrastination and poor time management. Resistance can cripple any potential successes. How do you know if you’re resisting successful living? It’s not rocket science – ask yourself: Are you in the same place now you were in 3 months ago? 6 months ago? 1 year ago?
Perhaps it’s time to stop looking at a book or waiting for a moment to motivate us. There is no book or speech that can actually do that. As human beings, we only change when we start taking the small steps towards re-engaging.
We typically view Motivation as some force outside of ourselves that will magically empower us. The reality is, in order to do anything; you have to begin tackling that which you are avoiding.
I believe that motivation is a lot like blowing up a balloon. When you don’t tie the balloon end off, it flies all over the place (chaotically) the moment you release it. A balloon is a lot more fun when you tie off the end so you can deliberately play with it rather than chase it. You can bounce it; even stick it to a wall. So, stop chasing the balloon. Stop chasing motivation. If you want to have motivation to play with, you have to hang onto it.
Here are a few tips to help you hold onto the end of the motivation balloon:
1) Decide what you want. We rarely allow interruptions when things are going great – following a powerful trajectory.
2) Decide that you deserve it. This creates an energy which has an amazing effect on making things happen.
3) Decide that you can have it.
4) Focus your thoughts and energy towards it.
5) Do something consistently to make it happen.
6) Keep taking action until it happens.
We will always get better results by doing something rather than doing nothing.
Now that I have given myself such a motivating speech, time to pull up my own big girl panties and start taking decisive action again. Of course if you would like to book me without my having to do anything – feel free to call – that would definitely be easier so I can focus on rearranging my desk under the auspice of being in the right head space for motivation!