My sister Christine and I were talking about motivation yesterday and the lack of it as neither of us had written a follow up to her goal setting post. She pointed out the statistic that most New Years Resolutions are abandoned by mid January. In doing a bit of research, I discovered that only a very small percentage of the 40% of Americans that actually make NY resolutions actually achieve their goals....just 8% (Forbes)!!!
Obviously we keep making resolutions, setting goals, focusing our intentions on a OLW because we want to get better. We have a desire to improve and be more than what we currently are. That is certainly not a bad thing. But when we give up on our goals, I think we feel worse than we did before we began. I know I am not the only one with an all or nothing mindset. It is why so many of us not only gain back weight that we lose, but often add additional pounds. When we miss the mark, we assume failure and often go in the opposite direction with gusto. When we miss a workout, instead of continuing to eat healthy and drink lots of water and bathe ourselves with kindness and grace, we instead get a 44 ounce pop and a donut. We've already "failed", might as well seal the deal, right?
So. How do we stop this? How do we stay motivated to stay the course? I know it is different for everyone. I am not really attempting to life coach any of you, simply to tell you what works....and doesn't work for me. Maybe you can relate. Maybe this helps you to take a look at your own efforts and figure out what works for you.
I have realized that fear of failure absolutely does NOT motivate me. Fear of failure has the opposite effect on me. FoF causes emotional paralysis and self sabotage. I can't even allow myself to think "what if I try and don't succeed?". A favorite quote of mine is from Gordon B. Hinckley, "You have not failed until you quit trying". This is motivating to me. When I miss a deadline or fail to get up at 4:45am or miss a day of writing, I no longer throw the baby out with the bathwater as I have been inclined to do in the past. Instead I remind myself that the only true failure lies in quitting. I am then motivated to try again. To continue seeking the end result of my goals.
Something that DOES motivate me is results. I am currently working on losing 45 pounds. I have Hashimoto's disease and weight gain is easy for me......weight loss, not so much. For the past two weeks I have been eating a THM approved breakfast of overnight oats with yogurt, blueberries and pecans. I actually really like this breakfast and the fact that I have lost about 8 pounds in two weeks keeps me motivated to continue, even though it is much more of an effort than instant oatmeal. Another goal that I have been working on since October is getting up at or before 4:45 am and working through a morning routine that takes me 2 hours. My morning starts with scripture study and prayer and includes affirmations, visualization and meditation. All the "ations", as my oldest daughter would say. It is not easy for me to peel myself from my warm cozy bed at this time of day. Or should I say this time of night. I have been up for almost three hours now (up at 4:07 am today) and it is still pitch dark outside. I am however motivated by the way I feel when I actually do get up on time (by 4:45 am) and complete my routine as planned. I can have all of my big daily goals completed before 7 am and then I feel like a rock star. It propels me through my day and I tend to make better choices for myself such as being on my phone less and getting things done. In order to remind myself of this when my alarm goes off before the butt-crack-of-dawn, I am training myself to repeat the mantra "getting up now will best serve me, getting up now will best serve my day". It has not been 100% effective, but pretty darn close. And because most of January has delivered below zero temps and I have not been feeling well, pretty darn close feels like success to me! This is a new and invigorating mindset for me. I do not have to give up because I missed a day. I seek grace from He who gives the best gifts and I give myself grace to continue on in this journey that I feel led, inspired, and guided to pursue.
So, what motivates you to keep going? I'd love to see that success rate climb much higher than 8%. If you are motivated by sharing your goals and intentions with others, share away!!! If you need a friend, a cheerleader, a mentor or someone to pray for you, let us know. We are here to help. We will be your JOYsisters and offer encouragment and support as YOU push forward, past the fear of failure and self doubt to accomplish your goals. Let 2018 be YOUR year.
I'll share. ~hh