Motivation can be a fickle & fleeting thing. Especially when it comes from external sources. When we are looking for motivation to be delivered to us, we also need it to be packaged just right for us. If the icon we admire uses the wrong word in their speech, their message will not resonate with us. That’s fickle.
Even when their message does resonate with us, the thrill and excitement are known to quickly fade. Maybe that YouTube video got us pumped up for our workout session, but we’ll probably need to watch another one before our next workout. Or maybe that podcast motivated you to finally start a blog, until self-doubt, frustration & impatience kick in a couple of days later.
Motivation from external sources is a push, but motivation from within us pulls us towards our goals.
For these reasons, I believe motivation that comes from within us is stronger, more meaningful because it’s authentic and better suited for the tests of time. I say it’s stronger and more meaningful because there is more on the line, self-respect for ourselves. Breaking a promise to yourself is awful, it reinforces the belief that you are not good enough or that you can never change. And how discouraging of a feeling is that?
Just making a promise to yourself probably won’t provide enough incentive. You need to create why’s. But instead of looking for one big reason, which can take time and experience to figure out, try to find numerous small reasons that will each result in a small positive impact within the day. It’s best to do this when you wake up in the morning.
When you come up with your incentivizing why’s for the day, you’ll quickly realize that it’s only a glorified to-do list. While To-do lists can be a useful tool, a list of tasks, duties and/or accomplishments that you have to push through the work to complete. Where the push becomes a pull, is in the why’s you have attached to each task.
Some examples of what your why’s could be; I’m going to….
- …so I’ll feel awake for my class, meeting/session.
- …so I feel like I deserve it when I ___ tonight
- …so I learn something new today
- …so I can grow my social network and form authentic relationships
- …so I can help ___ with ____
Notice how none of these examples are formed around materialistic rewards. That’s because motivation from materialism is inherently fleeting. Instead, form your why’s around your feelings & emotions. Things that make you feel a certain positive way; like deserving something or developing a sense of pride. This could be anything that is formed for your core values, beliefs & principles.
There is nothing wrong with seeking inspiration or motivation from external sources, as long as they aren’t your primary source. Creating a daily glorified to-do list with incentivizing why’s can be an amazing tool to ensure your primary source of motivation is coming from within.
Until Next time, Strive to Thrive!
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