A bit dramatic, but motivation is only going to get you so far. What you need to do instead…
“I’ll start Monday.”
“New week, time to crush _____ goal(s).”
“New Year, New Me.”
“Oh no, I missed the new (insert whatever starting line you choose), I’ll just start (insert new starting line here).”
Do you start the week with the optimism you’re going to crush every goal you set out for the week, but by Friday it’s all fallen apart and your weekend is filled with self loathing and ‘f**k it’, only to repeat the same thing Monday?
Is Monday ‘your day’ to start again?...every week?
Does this sound like you?
If you’re guilty of any one of these, then lack of motivation is killing your vibe, man. But is it really the lack of motivation stifling your goals? Probably not, but let’s examine this further.
If you've been around the fitness world long enough you know all about the wave of New Year Rosolutioners. These are the people committing themselves to lose X amount of weight, revamp their entire diet overnight starting fresh on January 1st, only to fizzle out by the beginning of February. But why? They were so motivated, excited, etc. What happened? Well, truth is motivation is a fleeting feeling, that means it doesn't stay around.
This is the same reason why every Monday morning is tagged with #mondaymotivation only to succumb to the reality that it's not there by the end of the week and we toss in the towel, giving up on the goal(s) we set forth so proudly days before.
If you can’t rely on motivation to get you through the week, how can you rely on it to get you through the month, year, or however long it's going to take you to reach your biggest dream or goals? You can’t rely on motivation to always be there, motivation is not your ‘Friends.’ (see what I did there?)
So, who is going to be there when it hasn't been you day, week, or even your year? (Sorry, I can't help myself today!)
Discipline is important because it brings about stability and structure into a person's life. It teaches a person to be responsible and respectful. If you can cultivate discipline into your life, you can reach ANY goal you set out for and truly transform yourself and your life.
Think about it this way -
If you only take action when motivation is high, let say every Monday your motivation is high, then you only have 52 chances to make a change in your life or to reach your goal.
But let’s say you start when motivation is high, and build the discipline to continue your goal even when your motivation is low, then you have 365 chances to reach your goal.
That’s over a 600% increase in your chances to reach your goal! Whoa!
I don’t know about you, but developing discipline is going to do more for you in the long run than motivation ever could. Now, I’m not saying motivation isn’t helpful. It is, just looking back at my first example of New Year Resolutioners. Thousands of people sign-up for gym memberships, gyms are packed, everyone is stocking up on produce in the grocery store, and your friends are talking about new recipes trying new diets. But what happens after 3 weeks? The crowd is gone and the regular gym-goers have more space and can get back to their routine of things. There are a handful of people who do come in on that wave of change and STAY! But what do they do differently than the other people who rode in on the same wave?
They developed discipline. They kept going when motivation left them high and dry. They went to the gym on the days they ‘didn’t feel like it’ and most likely left feeling better than when they started. By doing the workout when they didn't want to do it begins to instill the discipline principle even more. Soon enough they see the fruits of their labor, losing the weight, reaching that PR, or whatever goal they have. Then by magic these are the same people who are approached by the #motivationmonday people asking how they did it. Or even better, they ask how they stay motivated to continue to go to the gym and eat well everyday when it was so hard for themselves to do so. The difference is the first group relies heavily on motivation to get them to their goal, whereas the second group developed discipline in order to reach their goals.
If you have a goal, and it's going to be longer than a few days to complete it, I encourage you to be more like the second group. Develop discipline, as motivation is fleeting and can’t be relied on. Your goal will surely die relying on motivation alone. Give yourself 365 chances to get it right and reach your goals, life is too short to give yourself anything less.