Thursday, April 24, 2008

Finding the Strength to Lace Em Up Everyday

by Karen D. Swim

Laouging baby shampoo

© Svetlana Shapiro | Dreamstime.com

“People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily.” -- Zig Ziglar

No matter how passionate you are about your goals or how good your intentions are, you must fan the flames of motivation daily. Robyn McMaster offered this insight in response to yesterday's post: "Goals are extremely important to me because they help me keep my eyes on what I want to accomplish. When I put a picture of that near my computer or I write it out as a one line poem and put it there, it helps me sift past those things that would take me off the tracks."

Robyn knows a thing or two about goal setting and motivation as she is the Senior VP of MITA Brain Based Center.

Sometimes we fail to accomplish a goal and we blame it on a lack of discipline. In fact, it may have simply been a failure to renew motivation. Have you ever started a fire in a fireplace? The flames burn brightly and the heat engulfs the room but eventually the flames will flicker and die and the room will once again grow cold. To keep the fire going you have to add more wood.

I am highly visual so use visual cues to motivate you everyday. For example, when I embarked on my weight loss journey, I used a big wall calendar to mark my progress. I covered the walls of my work out room with pictures and posters of my favorite athletes. I taped motivational quotes to the dashboard in my car. On my runs, I carried 26 laminated scriptures in a wrist band carrier. I would pull one out every mile to encourage me to keep going.

If you are more of an auditory learner, try listening to motivational tapes or music. Load your IPOD (I really must get one of these!) or burn a CD of things that inspire you.

Read, watch, listen and talk to those that inspire. Head over to Brain Based Biz , Joyful Jubilant Learning or 6 Weeks for a bit of inspiration. The key is to do something everyday that will stoke the flames of motivation.

You may believe you are not disciplined or have an inability to focus. I am here to tell you that is not true. ERASE those negative thoughts from your mind. You simply may have been playing the game with the wrong equipment. You have accomplished things in life. As you think back on your accomplishments, what worked for you? What made that time different? I believe your answer may be that you cared enough about your pursuit and equipped yourself daily to achieve it.

My goal is to meet more people like those who read this blog. I am not pursuing X amount of readers so that I can feed my ego. I like getting to know you, hearing your thoughts, rants, and witticisms. I learn from you and am challenged by you. Why wouldn't I want to multiply that by reaching out to even more people just like you?

If your goal happens to involve a life changing decision, Robert Hruzek's two part post on the subject is a must read.

How do you stay motivated? What are your tips and tricks? Please share so that we can learn from one another.

17 comments:

liveslessordinary said...

I keep myself motivated by making myself accountable to others. Whenever I feel my motivation starting to flag, I get in touch with one or some of those who are 'in my camp', so to speak, and they soon put me back on track. You see, I just can't bear to let anyone down, and so I know that if others believe in me, and would be disappointed by my failure to achieve what I set out to, then I can draw on those deep reserves of strength that I didn't know I had.

Although, I do love the idea of surrounding yourself with aspirational images, quotes etc.
Amy
xx

Words For Hire said...

@Amy, having a support team is very important. I tend to keep my goals close to the vest but do have a few trusted advisors. :-) Have you ever had your support team discourage you from pursuing a goal? How would you handle it?

Karen
xx

Bob said...

Wow, what inspirational words! I'm honored that you would link my posts with this one.

I really think you have some great tips here, especially the scriptures in your wrist carrier - I never thought of that one!

Words For Hire said...

Hi Bob! Your posts were terrific and fit right in with the theme this week. Can you do that again next week? LOL! The scriptures were awesome and helped me to tap into my true source of inspriation (and purpose) rather than focusing on the effort my body was making. I bought them at a marathon expo. "The race is not given to the swift or strong but to those that endure." :-) Thanks for stopping by Bob, you really class up the joint. Hope to see you again. :-)

Karen

Rosa Say said...

Karen, like you I am very visual and use many of the same practices you do, getting stuff up where I can see it. I love wall calendars and have them all over the place for that progress tracking you mention - it's like a bigger, more colorful way to check off a to do list!

Reading, conversations, all sorts of projects and interactions can serve to motivate me, but I think that you and Robyn are right about the connection to a goal of some kind being that real catalyst that does the trick. To stop in all variety of action contexts, and thoughtfully ask yourself, "Why am I doing this? Why is this important to me, and how is it not simply more busy-work?" can be illuminating. Questioning self-talk is a great habit to get into, and it can serve as the walk first baby-stepping to goal-setting that can be sometimes be too big and intimidating at times.

Brett Legree said...

Karen,

Thank you for the nice words and the link back.

I find sometimes I get so buried that I need to hear that I have done good things from other people. I know that's why I like to read inspirational sites, like yours, and why I like to interact with people in the comments. It encourages me to think about all that I have done. I mean, I'm not a superhero, none of us is, but we've all done some pretty great things!

You will reach your goal, to meet more people like those who read your blog. You are already well on your way, keep on doing what you do.

To answer your question, what do I do? I have a vision board, and lists of goals - I look at those every day, to see how I'm doing. And you know - it is working.

-Brett

Kelly said...

Karen,

Zig Ziglar's quote is awesome. I'm constantly refreshing and re-motivating with books, ideas, quotes... anything I can get my hands on. I'm going to add that one to my master quotes list, to refer to whenever I'm wondering why I'd need another pep talk. Hey, relentless faith in the future is hard work!

Thanks for swinging by the MCE blog today. Nice to have your voice added to the mini-mentorship.

Regards,

Kelly

Words For Hire said...

@ Rosa, Mahalo Rosa. You have a knack for creating alliances and connections that I believe is a direct result of being able to connect with yourself. You know your soul and are able to connect to goals that matter and complete them. I hope that many others will visit JJL to be infused with that Aloha spirit. Thank you Rosa. I count it true joy that our lives have connected.

@Brett, hmmm I was always fun of Wonder Woman. LOL! You're right we do need to remind ourselves that we have done some good, and touched lives. This does provide motivation that we can do it again. I love the vision board. I am going to implement that into my visual tools. Thanks Brett!

Karen

Brett Legree said...

Karen,

Well then, you *are* Wonder Woman! Definitely do try the vision board, it really works well.

Thank *you* again, for your words today.

-Brett

Words For Hire said...

@ Kelly, we must have been posting at the same time! I love MCE and plan to visit often. Heck, I can't just keep following you around enjoying your comments. :-) Zig is one of my favorites, he doesn't try to over complicate and speaks with a genuine voice. Faith in the future is hard work! Glad we could help each other in that continuous pursuit. Thanks for visiting, y'all come back now. :-)

Karen

Words For Hire said...

@Brett, I am now going to sleep singing the Wonder Woman theme song, what a great way to end the night. Thank you Brett. Tomorrow, bracelets, because that was the secret of her power, yeah bracelets and lipstick. :-)

Brett Legree said...

@Karen,

Sleep well, Wonder Woman, and you are most welcome. I, the mighty Iron Man, must also retire for the evening.

(I am so dubbed, because I like my clothes pressed...)

-Brett

Bob said...

Karen, I loved that Zig Ziglar quote too. In fact, I've added it to this month's edition of "Great Quotes" (posted today).

Cheers!

Words For Hire said...

@Bob, glad to oblige my friend. I read your Great Quotes post, and was inspired. Looking forward to the weekend reveal. ;-)

Cheers!

Robyn McMaster said...

Karen, thanks for motivating me today. I can just see you with the wall calendar showing progress and the motivational quotes in your car. These certainly kept you on track. If you're like me so many temptations are out there to take you down. Just so I don't fall into the negative feeling that I'll never make it, I give myself small rewards along the journey. These really keep me on the straight and narrow path to the goal!

Words For Hire said...

Hi Robyn! I love your idea of small rewards along the way. We humans do seem hard wired for reward-response, don't we? ;-) Thank you for the motivation this week! It will be much easier to stay on track when a reward awaits me at the end!

Karen

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