Motivation Versus Inspiration

Man, its Monday again, and you are re-starting your diet…again. I have been on this hamster wheel a time or two, and I would love nothing more than to help you off of it.

You see, I always thought you had to be motivated to lose weight. I would watch my favorite person in the world, Richard Simmons and get so hyped about losing weight.

I would food prep, get ready on the weekend for Monday and swear that this time, this time would be the time I would totally lose my weight.

Thursday would roll around, and I would fall off the wagon. I would feel terrible and swear, next Monday, I will totally get in the groove, this was just a “pre-start.”

I lied to myself for years, slowly but surely chinking away at trusting myself to do any type of follow through when it came to my body.

I wanted a hot body. I wanted to eat cake. Wow, I had a huge dilemma.

By the time I was 40, I was depressed, my mobility was limited and I had to pick up my stomach to pee. Talk about hitting an all-time low—I mean, when you gotta pick up your skin to do anything so basic as peeing its pretty demeaning.

So, lets talk Motivation 101

What the hell is the difference, anyway? Is it someone jumping around on a couch yelling at you? Or a quiet person you see as a mentor that you want to emulate?

Well, this is my take. You cannot motivate anyone but yourself. If you think about it, the person who is on fire doing stuff to get better-well, it is likely they are self motivated.

Only they know their reasons, but they are doing stuff because it means something to them. It can be sparked by another person that they admire, but to go the distance, it has to be an intrinsic need.

I know what you are thinking right now-what if you want something, but the situation isn’t changing? Tough love here—then you don’t want it bad enough to change your habits.

What if you don’t “feel” motivated?

Stop. Right. There.

There are times you may not be excited to change. You may not be…gasp…motivated. Well, thats A-OK.

You just have to want something bad enough to change your habits.

The end.

Seriously, I didn’t want to stop eating crap. I cried when I had to change my diet. I wasn’t hyped at all.

But I had resigned myself to it for the weight-loss contest to do it for 6 months.

I wanted the money. I needed the money. I wanted the money so much I was willing to lose weight for it, change my diet and start with an exercise program.

I had some haters out there—mostly the people in my family that said this would be fleeting. I admit, I thought so, too, because I was not doing it for the noble reasons that society told me to: health, wellness, or to get that “bikini” body…

So what if your “want” isn’t what you should want by societies standards? Well, I say tell them all to go crap in their hat and leave you be.

Your motivation may come from wanting to wear a total slutty dress at your high school reunion so you can make the football star (the guy who now has a beer gut, no hair with a plumbers crack and yellow teeth), to be ashamed he trash-canned you in high school.

Maybe you want to lose weight to make your mate jealous. Maybe you do want to be healthy.

Your reasons are yours alone, so who gives a crap about what other people think?

Motivation comes from your why. Motivation is intrinsic. Motivation is deciding to change your habits to create an environment conductive to meeting your goal.

I do not believe that Motivation comes from others outside of yourself—That person cannot change your habits, cry when you fall off the wagon, cry when you go back on the wagon, and cry because you are so happy you met your goal.

Inspiration 101

Inspiration is something that you feel inside; again, intrinsic in nature. It may be a sudden thought that changes your actions.

I think inspiration is a cousin to motivation for sure, but again I feel inspiration is more a creative thing versus motivation which is something that kick starts you to change.

You know when you get a lightbulb moment?

You have been plugging away at a problem by changing your habits and working hard, then all of a sudden an easier more creative way to go about the problem wakes you up in the middle of the night—Blamo! That is inspiration.

I freaking love inspiration, because it can come at any time and it actually motivates you to be or do something better.

Inspiration is cool because you can create it yourself. You can do it by thinking of a problem before you go to bed or trying to do things a million ways and seeing what sticks to the wall. Thinking of a problem creatively makes you even more….Creative.

Weird how that works, right?

So all these things are great and all, but wheres the beef, so to speak? How do I lose weight, improve my life or make a big change in my job?

Here is the meaty parts:

Stop trying to find outside motivation. It needs to come from you.

Stop thinking you will feel like doing stuff. You take a deep breath and just do what you need to do. It sucks. I am not even gonna lie. It will suck—until you finish the task. Then we will have to take the hinges off the door so that your head can fit through it, because you are gonna feel like a million bucks.

Make inspiration work for you by thinking about stuff you want solve right before bed. You are more susceptible to suggestion when you are tired, and that can be a bad thing or a good thing depending on what you are thinking about, I would imagine. I find when I am working really hard to solve a problem, I am usually on overload. When I walk away or go to bed that is usually when ideas start flowing…

Motivation and inspiration both come from you. You can help it along by finding others that do make you motivated for that initial ball to start rolling; just know that it will still continue to be a lot of work, habit change and failure even when you do find an extrinsic motivator.

So thats my little diddy on motivation and inspiration. I hope this helped you in your quest to find a little man with a fro running around with tiny shorts and hugging people. Oh wait, thats my motivation, not yours….Oops!