“In my experience, there is only one motivation, and that is desire. No reasons or principle contain it or stand against it.” —Jane Smiley
Hello, My Friends,
This week a friend and I went for a guided tour through the Whanganui Collegiate School Museum and Archives. What a treat! The school was established in 1854, the museum has a record of all students who have ever past through it’s doors, some very talented men who have changed the way we do things in the world. The building architecture, brick and timber are stunning, the story of the earthquake strengthening and extensions and how they look amazingly like it was always there. We went through big school and the chapel. The atmosphere held the stories of hundreds of boys and the antics they got up to. It was a privilege to hear a little of our history. “Respect for our past is a key to the future”
This week I’ve been doing some reality checks. You know, you say you want to do something, and than you don’t do anything about it. Earlier this year at around my birthday, I decided that this was the year to remove the excess weight I’ve accumulated over the last 5 years. Here I am seven months on and I haven’t made any movement physically. Emotionally, however I have come a long way. I now hardly ever eat to hide from my emotions, I have learned to sit with them and let them be. Usually they pass within ten minutes or so, if not it’s usually something deeper and needs more coaching to ferret out the underlining issue.
Anyway, I’ve been mulling over why I’m not losing the weight, it’s not like I don’t know how. The true reason is I’m not committed to my goal.
Motivation is the reason or reasons for acting or behaving in a particular way. You are motivated to do, be or have anything from a ‘need’ that requires satisfying. In my case the need is not great enough to motivate me to eat better or to exercise in healthful ways.
What motivates you to do what you do?
Why do you go to work every day? To pay the bills, put food on the table, to have a roof over your head, to be able to do the things you love like fishing, skiing, dancing, hiking, etc.
What motivates you to achieve your goals? I’m presuming you set goals, as I said earlier it is usually an unmet need that is pushing you.
As humans we have the need to breathe, we need food, we need water, we need sleep, our body’s need to excrete waste and live in balance. These are the very basics of life.
We also need safety, we need to feel that we are safe, that we have security for ourselves and for our families. We have the need to be employed, to have a purpose. The need for safety spills across into our health, our resources, our property and our morality. Everyone needs to feel safe.
We also need to feel like we belong, that we are part of a group, a clan, society. We build friendships, we connect and identify with our families, we have a need for sexual intimacy. The need for connection has become very apparent with the requirement of social distancing.
That’s the funny thing about needs, once they are met they go away and you aren’t aware that you have the need, but unmet they push and drive and nag until they get noticed.
So, with that basic analysis of our needs, I’ll redirect us back to the question.
What is your motivation for what you do?
What is your why?
When you discover your true why, you will discover the motivation to do whatever it is you want. Your why is the force that guides you to fill the need that is nagging at you.
Using my weight loss goal, my why is not compelling enough to get me to change. In order to change this I am required to dig deep into the benefits that I think being slender will bring me. Things like- stylish clothes, freer movement, love and acceptance, better health, prettier appearance. Also on the flip side are the things I’ll gain that I don’t necessarily want, Like being noticed, what if I become sexy and have to deal with unwanted attention.
It’s about now that the brain starts to fire all the reasons why achieving the goal won’t work.
My work is to look at reason with honesty and decide if it is valid and if I want that to be the reason to stop me moving forward.
What about you? What is your goal? What is the one thing you really want to achieve?
What is the need that is pushing you, to achieve it?
How can you fill this need in a healthy way?
Motivation and filling your basic needs go hand in hand. Find the basic need that is wanting to be met and you will find the motivation to fill it.
Motivation is a huge topic and I have just skimmed the surface, I want to give you a quick overview of how motivation and our physical and emotional needs are intertwined, how your emotional needs drive your behaviour, and if you are unaware of this, your results will be less than you want.
Together we can walk on this journey of discovering our needs and filling them in healthy ways to create the dream lives we have always wanted.
See if you can find one ‘need’ that is creating pain in your life, if you want help to uncover your hidden stoppers, email me for a coaching session, you can live the life of your dreams, be the person you know is lurking in the recesses of your mind.
Until next time, choose to live your life authentically your way.