I hate working out.
There, I said it.
Whenever I wake up every morning, and I got a workout routine that I need to do that day, I absolutely dread it. I drag my feet. Read a book. Eat a snack. Stretch. Watch YouTube videos about cats wearing pajamas. Basically ANYTHING that helps delay the inevitable, I will do.
You may be surprised by this fact, because after all, I am a health and fitness coach for many women looking to get healthy. But the hard truth is…I still am an imperfect struggle bus. No matter if the workout is from one of my favorite programs like PiYo, I always feel like I need to bargain with myself when my alarm goes off at 5am.
“ok, Amanda, it’s just going to be 30 minutes”
“you’ll feel so good after you are done”
“you’ll look so hot in that bikini 3 months from now”
Sound familiar? Do you bargain with yourself this way sometimes?
I know I do, and in the past, whenever I would do multiple fad diets and long workouts at the gym, those bargain tools did help…for a week.
Because as life decided to bless with me with unexpected events, I would skip the gym and indulge in that extra bag of gummi worms, because I was having a really hard day at work or I didn’t feel like cooking.
And to my horror, when I would check my weight on the bathroom scale, it NEVER MOVED. Dun dun dun!
This would send me spiraling into a hole of self-pity and frustration. It seemed all effort to lose weight seemed pointless. And then I would give up. In 6 months, l would begin the vicious cycle all over again.
The Motivation Game-Changer
After this constant roller coaster ride, I decided to stop and really take a long hard look at why I was failing at staying consistent with my exercise and diet. And eventually, it all came down to one simple thing….my WHY.
At the time, I really didn’t have much of a WHY for doing what I was doing.
So, after studying motivation techniques and reading Darren Hardy’s book The Compound Effect, (which is now one of my favorite self-help/motivational reads), I realized I was missing something.
I was missing an emotional connection for reaching my goal.
Time and time again, I slipped off the fitness band wagon BECAUSE my WHY was not strong enough to drive me to my goals.
And then one day, I finally found my WHY.
I was diagnosed with alopecia (aka hairloss) because of my poor dieting and fitness habits. Even though I was devastated, this was a blessing in disguise.
I realized all the sweat, muscle soreness, and meal planning for adequate nutrition would be worth it because I didn’t want to go bald and feel inadequate as a woman.
Ever since I tapped into that WHY, everything changed.
I have not missed more than 2 days of a workout, I have eaten 95% cleaner consistently with fresh food and Shakeology daily, I lost 15 lbs, 4 inches from my waist, and saw my hair grow back thicker and fuller.
When I found my WHY, it sparked an emotion inside of me to MOVE and to CHANGE! That is my game-changer.
So how do you find your why -your game changer?
Let’s get started…
1. WRITE DOWN YOUR WHY
No matter what big changes you take in your life, you need to determine your reasons for doing what you are doing.
On a sheet of paper, I want you to write this phrase down:
I want to ___________________ because _________________
and start filling in the blanks with your goal and why.
You may not get this on the first try or even the second, so write this sentence as much as you have to. It might involve some digging and quick brainstorming on your end to figure out what really drives you.
TIP: One thing I like to do is ask “why” until the final reason is an emotion or person.
For example, this is a similar conversation I had with a woman I worked with in the past:
Me: so tell me, why are you interested in focusing on your health?
Anna: I want to lose weight and look good
Me: ok right on, but can you tell me WHY you want to lose weight?
Anna: hmm, well, I want to feel good and be active
Me: ok, awesome! WHY do you want that?
Anna: I want to be there for my kids and keep up with them when we play because I want to be involved in their lives and never miss a moment.
Boom there it is.
Do you notice a mind-shift when I kept asking the question “why” multiple times?
We broke past the superfluous, everyday generic reasons like saying “losing weight” and got down to her personal, heartfelt reasons for wanting to take her health seriously. In this case, Anna wanted to live in the moment with her children instead of being tired and sitting out.
So Anna’s sentence would look like
I want to lose weight because I want to be present and involved in my children’s lives and never miss a moment.
2. Make Your Why Visible
You have your WHY written down. Now, make it visible!
How? Write the sentence somewhere you can see it on a daily basis. Make a dream board. Create visuals to “see” your WHY. Do whatever it takes to get your WHY up in front of you from day one.
3. Look at your WHY everyday
And honestly, that WHY is not going to be as useful for you on your good days, as it will on your bad “off” days, when all you want to do is give up or sit on the couch and watch Netflix all day.
When you get to that bad day/week/month, look at your WHY, and if you did it right, it will spark an emotion for you. It will MOVE you to go and accomplish your goals. Otherwise, you just have more hills and battles to fight without your armor.
Make your WHY your armor!
Do I really need to do this?
If you are serious about meeting your goals, then Yes! Yes you do.
Take it from someone who constantly FAILED at losing weight and staying consistent with her health goals. I sucked at it, and until I tapped into my WHY, I was hanging onto a thread of hope.
Because if you don’t know how to motivate yourself, you will set yourself up for failure over and over and over and OVER again.
As you very well know, when the going gets tough you need to tap into that WHY reason to help you keep going. Something as broad as “I want to lose weight” or “I want to be happier” is just NOT enough to get you motivated. It never was and never is a huge motivator for me.
Instead, when you think about your own personal, emotionally driven reasons, your WHY for doing something, you are setting yourself up for huge success for the short and long term.
What does your WHY sentence look like? How do you motivate yourself to accomplish your goals? Please comment and share below!