Getting Motivated: Finding My “Why”

I shared earlier this week that I was unhappy with the girl in the mirror, that I was struggling on my weight loss journey. I realized that one of the reasons is that I’m all over the place as far as motivation goes. Some days I want to lose weight so I can fit into smaller clothes, some days I exercise because I want to be a better example for my kids, and some days I can’t come up with a reason to eat right and exercise so I don’t. Not super impressive, is it.

I know that when you’re beginning a new health and fitness routine, one of the most important questions you should ask yourself is “Why?”. It’s a crucial question, yet it’s one I failed to ask myself.  I know that when I have a clear, concise answer to this question, I’m more focused and more successful.

It’s the same for you.  If you have a clear, concise and well-grounded answer to this question, you’ll be able to stick with your exercise routine through good times and bad. You’ll know why you’re opting for egg-whites and veggies instead of that sugary donut, you’ll understand why you put in the time at the gym and you’ll have the motivation to keep at it even when your muscles hurt and all you want to do is eat chocolate. It’ll make all the difference.

On the other hand, if you don’t know your “why,” chances are you’ll start your workout routine, stick with it for a few days or weeks and then fall off the bandwagon when the going gets tough. After all, getting healthy takes effort. You need to have the motivation to make it happen.

Identify Your “Why”

Start with looking at your health and fitness goals. Different kinds of goals tend to have different motivations.

Are you just trying to lose some weight? If so, what’s the most important thing you think you’d gain by losing that weight? Is it better health, more energy and most likely, a longer lifespan? Is it more social acceptance? Is it fitting into a specific size? Or more attention from the opposite sex?

Look at your goals and ask yourself: Why do I want my body to look this way? Often times finding your “why” is a matter of looking inward rather than outward.

Write Down Your “Why”

As the saying goes, “where there’s a will, there’s a way.” To keep your “why” alive, write it down on paper and keep it somewhere visible.

On days when you just don’t feel like getting up to go to the gym, that piece of paper can give you the push you need to get off the couch and into the gym.

Writing out your “why” also serves another function. Often times when trying to figure out your why, you’ll have a sense for it but not be able to put it into one concise sentence. Writing it out will help you form your why into a more concrete form.

To sum it up, finding your why is one of the most important aspects of being able to successfully make changes and stick with them. If you have a strong enough reason for wanting to change your body, you can. Just make sure to keep reminding yourself of that reason, especially when times get tough.

If you’ve already found your “Why?”, I’d love to hear what it is.  Leave me a comment! If you’re struggling, leave a comment as well.  You’re not in this alone!

Photo Credit: openpad

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