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There are a lot of things that can destroy your motivation. But I want to discuss the one sneaky thing, the thing that lurks below the surface. You might be guessing what I am referring to. Maybe you’re thinking about burnout, doing a diet that you hate, or becoming obsessed with unrealistic results. Or, ya know, that caffeine addiction that we all have and don’t want to admit. While those are all real things that can destroy our motivation, they are not what I am talking about in this post. I am sharing the secret thing that might be destroying your motivation. And, you might be surprised by what it is.
The Secret Thing That Might Be Destroying Your Motivation
Changing How You Think
There’s something that is lurking in the back of our brains that can totally crush our motivation. It’s lurking below the surface, and usually, we completely miss it. And even if we do kinda figure it out, we usually go about solving this problem all the wrong way. See, you don’t overcome this thing by getting rid of it, which is what we always try to do with our problems. You overcome it by shifting your focus. By changing how you’re thinking and changing how you do things.
After 20+ years of coaching, I would say that might be the biggest thing we miss. Success often requires us to shift our focus and change how we think. To think outside the box that we normally stay in. When we do this, suddenly we’re changing how we do things, and changing how we do things becomes a lot easier and a lot more sustainable. The problem is we have never thought about it like that before. We stay stuck in our old ways. Our brain tries to figure out the same problem in the same way we’ve always attempted in the past, and it just doesn’t work. It’s the same thing with weight loss. We are conditioned to do the same thing over and over again.
A Lack of Belief Can Destroy your Motivation
So what is the secret thing that might be destroying your motivation? Well, according to psychologist and author Tom Bun, motivation can be suppressed and destroyed by believing you can’t succeed. A lack of belief can destroy your motivation. That is what very well might be deep inside your brain, steering your ship, regardless of how hard you try. Do you believe that you can succeed? Get crazy raw and honest with yourself. Think of exactly what you want to achieve and then answer that question. Do you really truly believe that you can or ever will actually accomplish that? If not, that’s okay. You’re not alone. Most of the people I work with admit to a lack of belief. They’ve tried and failed and tried and failed so many times, they don’t believe they can do it.
If this is you, we need to ask another question. What exactly is it that you don’t believe you can accomplish? Lose 20 pounds? 50 pounds? Lose 75 pounds? Or maybe it’s to fit into a certain size of jeans or to get rid of your belly fat. Here’s the thing: all of these are outcome goals. And you want to know a secret? You don’t have to believe you can succeed in order to achieve your goals. That might sound contradictory to everything I normally preach, but hear me out. So many people get super focused on their lack of belief, and they start doing everything possible to try to build up their belief. All the while, the bully in your brain, that little voice in your head, is sitting over to the side, laughing. You’re spinning your wheels trying to build belief and you’re not doing anything to actually move in the direction that you want to go. The majority of your time and energy is focused or absorbed into your lack of belief, and you’re not taking action.
Outcome Obsessed vs. Action Focused
Is believing in yourself important? Yes. It’s just important in a very different way than you might think. It’s not important to you actually believe you can achieve your big goal to lose 50 pounds or look good in a swimsuit. It’s not important that you believe that, but it’s important that you believe in yourself. You don’t have to believe in some huge overall outcome. All you have to do is believe you can take the first step. And to do this, you must shift from being outcome obsessed to action focused. All you need is enough belief in yourself to tackle today. Just enough to take action one day at a time. That’s it.
When you take a big trip, you pick your destination and then you start making plans on how to get there, where you’ll stay, travel details, what you need to pack, etc. You start planning your trip, taking action steps that set you up and get you closer to the trip itself and arriving at your destination. The process of losing weight should be exactly the same. If you want to lose a certain amount of weight, okay great. You can get there, but only if you stop dreaming and doubting and you start taking action here and now that will get you there. We know there will be mess-ups along the way, but we know that’s part of the process. We learn and keep going, focusing on taking action one day at a time, week after week. And when you do this, the craziest thing happens. You aren’t even worried about whether or not you believe you can lose 35 pounds or get rid of your belly fat. Why? Because you’re too busy actually doing the stuff that will lead to your big overall goals.
Ignoring Your Lack of Belief
Not obsessing about how far you have left to go, dreaming about how awesome it will be once you get there, or getting distracted by your lack of belief, all of it doesn’t matter anymore. Do you know why? Because you are building in yourself each and every single day. That’s the answer to the riddle my friends. You increase your belief by ignoring the lack of belief and just taking action. Focus on the lack of belief, and it just grows because you’re focusing on the problem. The solution is to leave the lack of belief in the dust. Take action day by day, week after week. And then one day you wake up and realize, you’ve built belief not by working on belief, but by taking action. That’s the secret thing that might be destroying your motivation.