3 Keys to Getting Motivated and Get Going Again

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Motivation – what a huge subject.  People have written whole books about the subject and still there is a lack of general knowledge about how you really get motivated.

So this will not be a “do all & end all” article where you can suddenly “whip” your lagging motivation into shape and right away find it easy to get in shape. No, this is more about understanding a little about how you can move in the direction of getting motivated and possibly actually doing that.

Key #1. If you are trying to break a habit, like smoking, eating and being overweight or getting off the couch and exercising, here is one simple piece of advice that will work in your favor. If you have never “tried” to quit or change a habit that is bothering you, then by all means start trying. Set a date when you will quit smoking. Set a date when you will walk for a mile. Then when the date arrives, DO IT. If you fail, don’t be hard on yourself. You are one step closer to victory. Remind yourself of that.

Key #2. “Count the cost” of your habit. You need to do this both ways – the pleasure you get from continuing the habit, and the price you are paying for diminished health by not being motivated to change. Let’s use smoking again for an example.

What kind of pay-back do you get by smoking? People say things like pleasure, relief from nervous tension, better concentration and a general feeling of well-being. Now figure out what it is costing your health. How much is it shortening your life? Are you prone to lung cancer or emphasima? What about your breath and the way people avoid you because of your “smell?” What kind of a fire danger have you already been the cause of?

If you want to be successful at quitting smoking, for example, your loss of health would need to be a stronger factor than the pleasure and the general sense of well being (though temporary) that smoking gives you.

Key#3. Dig up some good old FEAR! Yes, fear is a tremendous motivator. Fear of loss. You might lose your life, lose your spouse, lose your job, lose all your money, lose your sight, lose your sex drive or be diagnosed with cancer, diabetes or a bunch of other debilitating diseases.

If you think real hard about the health issues you face if you DON’T get motivated to start eating right, exercising, losing weight or stop smoking – what kind of fear does this create? This possibly could be the very best way to get motivated and to stay motivated.

One thing that I find that helps me a lot is the Slight Edge. I wrote about this in another post.  You can read about it here:  The Slight Edge


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The Slight Edge – So Easy to Do – So Easy Not to Do

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The slight Edge is all about doing little things every day that add up over time to become big things. The problem is this: these little every day things are very easy to do. They are also easy NOT to do. There lies the catch.

Jeff Olson makes a big point about how we in the USA as a society can let our health suffer the way we do. Obesity is rampant, as is diabetes. We are a lot more obese as a culture than we were 10 years ago. How can we do this to ourselves? We do it because we don’t have a system like “The Slight Edge” to slowly bring us back on track and into being vibrantly healthy again.

Without committing to small DAILY rituals that will make a big difference down the road, we will continue on our downward spiral and wake up when we are 50 or 60 and wonder if it’s too late.

It’s never too late to start the “Slight Edge.” There are a number of different angles you can tackle – exercise, junk food, more sleep, going to the doctor, etc. But don’t bite off too much to start with. Simply start with a simple thing like a decision to have a salad instead of a greasy cheese burger.

Now are you going to feel different right away. Probably not much, if at all. But what if you keep doing this “slight edge” day after day after day. Do you think in 3 months you will see a slight difference? I think so. I believe you will be feeling different too, with more energy.

It’s your body, your life, your health, and your decision. It’s my goal to assist you in getting fit and getting more healthy every week. I just turned 61 years old, and I think about these “slight edge” things a lot.

I will be sharing more of how I am using the “Slight Edge” and my struggles and victories. Please share what you are going through too.

The “Slight Edge” is in book form and also on CD.

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The Myth of MultiTasking

I recently took an internet course entitled “Wake Up Productive” taught by Eben Pagan. One of the first things he taught was how critical it is to STAY FOCUSED on one thing at a time.

Yes, yes that’s all good and dandy. But what about all the many things I need to keep juggling every day, just to keep my head above water?

Tony Schwartz(author of The Power of Full Engagement) says the same thing. Multi-tasking isn’t working. It works IF your goal is to get further and further behind.

What does this all have to do with fitness and exercising?

One thing Schwartz teaches is to think of your exercise program as a “ritual.” A ritual is something you do come hell or high water, right? Developing a ritual helps to remove the need to “think” about whether or not you should exercise – you remove the need to procrastinate!

The beginning of building this ritual is the difficult part – until you can embed it into your heart, and it becomes a habit. This takes a willingness to see it through until the habit takes root – at least 4 weeks minimum.

OK, back to multi-tasking. I know in my situation, when I try to juggle 20 things at once, I get stuff done, but I also leave a lot of stuff undone – and a big one I leave undone is my exercise program.

The key here is to focus on one project at a time, keeping the distractions to almost zero. It’s amazing how much work you can get done. When you put this same intense focus on your fitness program – It will be much easier to turn your focus into a ritual.

Here a cool video of Tony Schwartz giving a talk at Google. It’s about acquiring lots of energy and sustaining high performance.

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Happy Holidays with Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Happy Holidays to all of my friends and family!

2008 is almost over. It has been a year controlled by the media – sending fear throughout this great land of ours.

My recommendation to you is QUIT LISTENING to the news. Put your energy into focusing on HOW you are going to make 2009 your most remarkable year.

James Earl Ray has said it this way: “Energy Flows where your Attention Goes.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson is one of my favorite authors. Here is a tremendous quote from him:

“Without AMBITION one starts nothing. Without WORK one finishes nothing. The prize will NOT be sent to you. You have to WIN it. The man who knows HOW will always have a job. The man who also knows WHY will always be his boss. As to methods there may be a million and then some, but PRINCIPLES are few. The man who grasps PRINCIPLES can successfully select his own METHODS. The man who tries METHODS, ignoring PRINCIPLES, is sure to have trouble.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

That certainly give me an earful. And it is worthy of my study and application. This reminds me of another saying that goes like this: Don’t wait for your ship to come in — swim out to meet it!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday. Let’s look forward to 2009 being a much more promising year.

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