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Motivation – The Mental Side of Reaching Goals – Ep 22

Being mentally tough is a powerful way help you in obtaining your goals. There are various moments where you will be faced with a decision that will help you or hinder you from getting to your end goal. Life is not about the circumstances you come against, instead it is about your decisions when confronted with these circumstances.

I am going into my third week of a 5-week weight management challenge, the Shirt Off Challenge. Some of us want to gain weight and most of us want to lost fat while maintaining muscle (Lose weight). Last week I wrote about the idea of making your diet a permanent lifestyle change while listing the macros needed in order to lose weight. (I also hope to do a macro meal plan for gaining muscle while controlling fat in the coming weeks.)

This week I spoke to a couple of the guys in the challenge about their difficulties with weight management. They admitted that it’s hard to stay motivated especially after a ‘rough’ weekend. The weekend often comes with a breaking of the healthy eating patterns that comes from the consistency the modern work week offers us. I want to highlight some of the things you can do to stay motivated AND bounce back strong after a ‘rough’ weekend.

Long Term weight loss starts in your head. Most people are fine initially but then Something happens. The first week it is easy to stay motivated  but somewhere after the first week you can usually see your motivation fall. 

There are a few ways to maintain or regain your motivation as if it was your first day all over again! Everyday!

4 Major Keys to Maintaining Motivation: 

  1. Why? That’s right. What’s your why? Why did you start this in the first place? What do you have to gain with all this? Having a strong reason for doing anything can help you maintain your focus and control your desires to so you DO NOT ‘let up’. I challenge you to write down the reasons why you are going after your goal.
  2. Set daily goals: This will keep you focused everyday. And where your focus goes, energy flows. This will also keep you focused everyday. Whereas sometimes you might take a day off and hope to make up for lost ground the following day. You can correct this pattern by setting daily goals to help keep you going.  
  3. Weekly Goals: One of the best ways to destroy your motivation is to set goals too high. So high in fact that after your first week you know you won’t reach your aim. And on the other side of that, something that can also destroy your motivation, is setting goals that are too low. If you know you can beat this goal while still not giving effort for the majority of the week then you’ll lose motivation. You won’t NEED the motivation anyway, so why would your invincible weapon of a brain persist in keeping something you won’t need? Similar to keeping your stress levels somewhere in the middle you also want to keep your goals balanced. Not too hard and not too Easy. Something that’s challenging, exciting, and forces you to focus. 
  4. Who? Along with you, who else is this goal going to help? If you are trying to lose weight, think about that person or those people when you are deciding on whether you should have dessert on a casual Tuesday Evening. Personally, the person that will always thank me when I’m sacrificing a short term pleasure for a long term reward is Future George (Me). When exercising, another personal example, who keeps me motivated to continue to improve my level of fitness are my basketball teammates.

I want to talk about the first road block we may face when first starting off on a new challenge like a weight loss challenge:

The first Weekend

This first weekend is often the first obstacle in our journey to reach our goal. Often times I think its inevitable. But it’s NOT! Using the tips above you can ensure you don’t fall for the first weekend trap. 

However, if you do trip up and this is when Laziness creeps in and instead of making a healthy meal you order UberEats instead. And you decide you’ve been good all week so you deserve the large meal with extra fries. Don’t do it! OH NO! You did it, didn’t you? Well I hope it was worth it. Now you can direct your focus forward to…

Bouncing back 

It’s Monday again and you had 2 days over the weekend where you weren’t as good as you should have been in reaching your goals. What you must do now is learn from this experience and be proactive! Use it to your advantage. What are some things you can work on this week so you don’t make the same mistakes again next weekend? Ask empowering questions such as:

What’s not perfect yet?

What did I do last weekend that I don’t want to repeat this coming weekend? What am I going to do differently?

Nice job! You answered these tough questions and gained an insight into what you need to do to stay consistent in the process of reaching your goals. 

Staying consistent

Let’s imagine it’s next Monday again and you have done a much better job this weekend than the previous weekend of staying on track. How can you keep the momentum going and stay consistent!? Well, there are a few things like having a plan and following through with it, remembering that fear is temporary, and, what I think is most important to staying consistent is, making a conscious effort to stay consistent. Again, Long Term weight loss starts in your head. This is why we must control our…

Fear

Fear can control us if we allow it. You may be fed up, tired of doing all these annoying and unfamiliar things, making sacrifices and fear keeps telling you that it will be all in vain. Don’t listen to it! A Common question that you may subconciously ask yourself:

What if I do all this (give up what I like, sacrifice my time and energy, do things I haven’t done before) and still don’t see any results at the end?

Fear only exists because we think it up. We must stop this pattern of negative thinking! By staying positive and focusing on solutions instead of the problem we can drive fear out of our thinking pattern.

By following the 4 major keys to maintaining motivation and learning from your mistakes instead of beating yourself up about it you can dominate your mind and make progress to reaching your goals!

References:

  1. https://www.webmd.com/diet/obesity/features/8-ways-to-think-thin#1
  2. https://www.lifehack.org/606271/why-we-lose-motivation-once-in-a-while-and-how-to-fix-it-forever
  3. https://www.rewire.org/stop-fear-controlling/
  4. https://drgloriapetruzzelli.com/2013/12/02/5-tips-for-being-consistently-consistent/
  5. https://mindsetgoal.wordpress.com/2021/03/08/making-your-diet-a-permanent-lifestyle-change/

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