I was recently asked the question: “How can I stay better motivated?”
Often you will start by setting the goal that you want to achieve. Say for example, your goal is to lose 20 pounds.
The goal is your starting point
The problem is, a lot of things can happen between now and your goal. These problems can easily derail a perfectly good goal along with your motivation to achieve it.
So, what can you do?
Rather than paying attention to the goal, focus on the process. The process is paying attention to the steps involved:
- Plan: Start with a plan
- Do: follow through with the plan
- Evaluate: evaluate what happened. What changes can be made?
- Reward: reward yourself. tell yourself you did a good job following through
- Repeat: start back at number 1.
Say for example the first step you want to do is find out what nutritional changes would work the best for you (Plan). Then you would implement the plan. For example, ask around for what has worked for others and/or do a web search for more information (Do)
Next you would evaluate the plan. You found a good nutrition plan you want to implement. Always reward yourself for following through, “I did it!” Now repeat the process.
“I didn’t follow through with my plan today.” Now you get to choose:
are you going to take a strengths-based approach (evaluation of the process)? Or, are you going to take a deficits-based approach to reaching your goal?
This next step in the process is what can make or break your motivation.
There is an important difference between evaluating (what can be done differently) the process to stay motivated (strengths-based approach) or looking at your attempt as a failure (deficits-based approach).
A motivation response is (strengths-based approach): “I didn’t follow through with my plan. What happened? Do I need to change my plan?”
The motivation killer is (deficits-based approach): “I don’t have time to find a nutritional plan. I am never going to lose the weight. I have been this way my whole life, it’s not going to change now, I am always going to look like this.”
While evaluating your plan, are you going to pick the motivation response or the motivation killer?
Remember, to stay motivated, focus on the process rather than the goal.
Plan out each step, follow through with each plan, and make any changes as needed.
And, finally, make sure you reward yourself, every time, for paying attention to your process with your ongoing strengths-based positive attitude.
I wrote this article ad a script to a video. I am still working on making the video will post soon. Please remember to subscribe to this blog, leave a comment, and contact me, Catherine Cleveland for your mental health needs (585) 432-0313