As the cooler weather starts to settle in here in Australia I keep hearing the same question - how do I stay motivated?
You know the feeling - riding off the coattails of summer and your new year resolutions. You've seen positive change, you're feeling great....but as cooler weather sets in it is harder to get up in the morning. Or it is easier to pick up that donut 🍩.....
Perhaps you are reading from somewhere where the weather is getting warmer. Well, this still applies to you. You have your resolutions - warmer weather gives us a bit of get up and go, so how do you ensure you make the most of that?
With a what, why and a how.
Let's start with what. What do you need to achieve? What do you want? The what is your goal. We are pretty good at doing that. But knowing what we want isn't enough to stay motivated. If it was we would be smashing goals all over the place. It is important. It is part of it. But it is not enough.
Here is where your why comes in. It is becoming more common to hear people talk about their 'why'. The problem with that is there is a danger of it becoming broad and wishy washy. I especially see this in my clients in direct sales:
"My 3 kids are my 'why'"
Okay, but why?
"....because they are my kids?"
When you are drilling down your goal into your 'why' make sure your why is just as specific as your goal. It helps create your vision. Okay, maybe your 3 kids are the reason why you got into direct sales, but specifically how do they drive you to go for those sales? It probably boils down to the money providing a bit of financial freedom to spend on little Mia's soccer boots. Or for dance costumes. Or to go on that holiday. Right, now we are getting somewhere. Make the vision even more plain - what does that look like exactly? How is that going to feel? To you, to them? What will people notice about you if you achieve that?
All of these questions help to give your why meaningful shape. The more you can envision your why, the stronger and more substantial you make your motivation.
So you know what you want to achieve and now you know why.
Still not enough.
We can have the best of intentions, but it is nothing without a plan.
How are you going to achieve your goal?
This bit can take a bit of time, but it is just as important to invest time into to ensure you super charge your motivation.
Your how becomes your action plan. But it is more than actionable steps. When you consider your how, think about what things might get in your way, and how you are going to overcome. If your goal is to get fit, your why is so you can keep up with your kids and join the local indoor soccer team, your first how might be to join a social soccer group.....but you also know that it runs on a Thursday evening and you usually do groceries then. Your how will also include reconsidering your schedule to make time. Or perhaps you know that on Thursdays you are usually rushing around and you know the 'busy' excuse may pop up. Your how will include managing your time so that your gear is packed the night before, you have an alarm set to remind you to finish up at work/home and get your butt to that game.
You know yourself better than anyone, so you know your own excuses. When you consider your how, own your usual excuses and come up with a response and action plan to each.
So there you go. What, why and how. Now all there is to do.
Remember, no goal will be achieved without some action, and at the end of the day motivation is a choice. But by considering these three questions you are setting yourself up to succeed.