Anyone else have days when you feel totally unmotivated, and then other days you feel like you can take on the world?
I have good news - it's common, and there are strategies that you can use to boost motivation and help you refocus your goals.
First let's define motivation.
Motivation is the force that drives our decisions and influences behaviour. For this post, I'm going to use the example of weight loss. You set a goal to lose 20 pounds. Motivation is necessary to keep you on track to accomplish your weight loss goal. There are two types of motivation: intrinsic and extrinsic motivation.
Intrinsic is driven by personal forces such as personal enjoyment and satisfaction, ie. losing weight will make you feel better and improve your overall health.
Extrinsic involves being motivated by an external factor like such as awards, praise, money, ie. when you lose the weight, you’ll likely receive a lot of compliments from friends and family on how great you look.
Perhaps you've set this goal, but you're feeling unmotivated to do the work required to reach that goal. You may find comfort in knowing that there are legitimate reasons why we feel unmotivated:
Poor sleep quality/lack of sleep
Stress Or, barriers such as:
Insufficient funds or resources
Fear of failure
Lack of knowledge
Lack of time/inflexible schedule
Considering what we’re all going through right now with Covid - a global pandemic, I think it’s safe to say we’re all experiencing more anxiety, burnout, and stress than ever before. Unfortunately this pandemic is dragging on, so instead of letting it get the best of us, let's do something about it!
Let’s talk about some strategies to boost motivation:
1. Set SMART Goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-related
When it comes to weight loss:
Specific: who, what, why, when, how, ie. why do you want to lose weight, how much, by when, and how are you going to do it?
Measurable: do weekly weigh-ins (same day and time each week) to track your progress!
Attainable & Realistic ie. losing 20 lbs is attainable, but not in 2 weeks. A realistic goal would be 20 lbs in 4 months.
and Time-related: ie. when do you want to lose the weight by?
2. Identify potential setbacks
Maybe it’s a busy career, the influence of family members - perhaps they're not supportive of trying new healthy recipes, or financial challenges.
3. Consider incentives
For every 5 lbs lost, treat yourself to something (not a food reward) like a new outfit or a pedicure!
4. Use productivity tools
Work one-on-one with a nutritionist (like me!) or a behavioural psychologist. that you can be accountable too, who will provide support, motivation and tools like meal plans, prep guides and healthy recipes. There are also apps out there, like My Fitness Pal that can compliment your efforts.
5. Social support
Set a weight loss goal with a friend or family member, and make exercise dates with friends to keep you accountable, and motivated.
6. Make pursuing your goals fun
Participate in exercises that you enjoy like dancing, sports or yoga.
Put your ear pods in, turn on some music or a podcast, hand the kids over to your partner or their grandparents for an hour or two, and enjoy some peace and quiet while you're cooking or meal prepping. It doesn't have to be stressful!
7. Track and celebrate your progress
This ties into incentives, but rewarding yourself for your progress along the way releases dopamine in the brain, and can motivate you further.
If you have a weight loss goal, let me help you boost your motivation, and meet your goal! Check out my weight loss program, and start your transformation today!