Overcoming Lack of Motivation

Need to overcome lack of motivation? Is there something you need to do or change but you just can't motivate yourself to make the change? Perhaps you've just come out of the doctor's office and were told you have diabetes and need to change your diet. Maybe you are a smoker and your girlfriend has given you the ultimatum: quit smoking or the relationship's over because she doesn't want to raise kids with all the second hand smoke. Maybe you've been told you need to get to work on time but you're chronically late, or you've decided you've got to lose those extra ten pounds before swim season is here. Whatever the issue, you can overcome your lack of motivation by answering several key questions.

What?
The first thing you need to identify is what exactly needs to change. Okay, you are a diabetic and you need to lose weight, change your diet and start exercising.

  • Exactly how much weight do you need to lose?
  • Exactly what things need to change about your diet?
  • What old habits can you keep, and what new habits will you need to instill?

Break it down into essential changes and nonessential changes, and tackle the essential changes one by one. Be sure to break it down into accomplishable goals with incremental changes built in.

Why?
This is where you need to spend the most time - over and over and over again. Ask yourself why you are making the changes.

  • What will you gain?
  • What will you lose if you do not change?
  • How will you feel when it's all said and done?
  • How will you feel if you fail?
  • How can get yourself emotionally invested in the change?
  • How will this change affect the people around you?
  • Will you benefit emotionally? Financially? Physically? Relationally? Career-wise?

Formulate a persuasive argument for making the change, and pitch this argument to yourself on a daily basis.

When?
You'll need to establish some dates and specific, tangible, attainable goals. If you are trying to quit smoking:

  • Are you going to do it cold turkey, or will you wean yourself off the cigarettes?
  • When will you limit yourself to one in the morning and one at night?
  • When will you quit that evening cigarette?
  • When will you quit altogether?

How?
Now you'll need to come up with a step-by-step plan, complete with accountability, rewards and support. Make sure your plan fits your lifestyle. If you're trying to lose weight but hate to cook elaborate meals, don't go on a diet plan that require a lot of meal preparation. Instead choose a plan with premade meals that are easy to fix quickly.

Are you making this change with the support of your family or on your own? Figure out what  you'll do when the rest of the family is eating chips and you want some, too. The more detailed and easy to follow your plan, the more likely you'll be to succeed. Keep it simple, but comprehensive.

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