Have you ever woken up and said to yourself, “I need to get my lazy ass to the gym”, but then you sit through the excruciating pain thinking about all the effort you need to put in to drive all the way, do your warm ups, pick up some weights, do a bunch of sets, hit the cardio, stretch, drive back, shower, straighten up your room, do your chores and then you’re like “Hell naww” and just sign into Netflix instead?
It doesn’t make any sense does it. I mean you just experienced a motivational high not more than twelve hours ago where you felt that you can move the whole world with your beauty, charms, wit and fabulous hair and now its all gone *poof*.
I hope we all came with a personalised manual that laid out the ways how you could refuel your motivation and get a monthly maintenance.
I was 22 when I started going to the gym. No one pushed me to do it, I pushed myself, in fact people were surprised that I went to the gym because I wasn’t “fat”. They never knew the physical and the emotional insecurities I had been facing for quite a while. In fact I think I’ll talk about that in another article.
I hired a personal trainer, he was an inspiring motivator. This was the time when I was at the motivational peak, it lasted for a good seventy two hours, seventy two impressive hours in which my trainer understood my potential and my intense desire to get fit.
I was in pain throughout the session, but I was overjoyed to know that it worked, the fourth day, lo and behold, I didn’t go, because I started thinking way too much.
- I do not want to do this.
- No one seems to support me, why do I have to waste all my energy.
- What am I hoping to accomplish
- Who am I trying to impress.
- I am going to fail at this too like I’ve failed at many other things, so why bother
- Well, I am not really fat.
I felt angry, angry at myself for being useless, angry at those living with me for not pushing me, I lashed out, I cried, I tried to keep my thoughts busy because I couldn’t stop myself from feeling hurt.
The next day, I went back to the gym, not in the same spirit as I was in on the first day. Then the cycle goes on and on.
I decided to do something that I’ve never thought that I would do, something many lecturers, speakers, achievers suggest but we end up ignoring anyway. I sat and wrote down all the reasons I thought was causing me to feel so sad, so lonely and so inadequate all the time.
After this reflection I learnt that all these negativeness stemmed from things that were external to me and not in my control. Things like:
- What will others think?
- Who am I going to impress?
- My parents will be disappointed
You see that???None of them were about me….
Instead of thinking way too much about all the factors that you may have little to no control, why not just walk forward..
As the phenomenal Tyrion Lannister once said …. “Never forget what you are, the rest of the world will not. Wear it like armour, it can never be used to hurt you”
Don’t try to be perfect, perfection does not even exist:
Perfection is just an illusion. We believe that it is a shield from the external environment, that protects us from ridicule, betrayal, rejection etc.. but we fail to realise what we have to pay for it. You might be surprised to know that some of the things you thought were imperfect might actually be unique gifts. Write your own reflection before sleep and you might uncover it.
Be a child again:
The reason we had all those high hopes and dreams and passion for all things big and wonderful when we were kids was because we did not really know how to be worried and hurt by things beyond our control. Maybe we should all just relive childhood once again when we feel small or hurting inside.
I went through one of these low, useless days not too long ago, I didn’t know what made me do it, I bought a set of colour pencils and a colouring book (the one that is made for adults, with the really complicated designs) and started colouring. I also have a collection of Hannah Barbara cartoons that I spend some time on.
Maybe go ask your grandparents to tell you a story about their childhood, get messy and do some hand painting, watch one of your favourite Disney princess movies, make peace with the person you once adored as a child and exchange memories from those days.
Once you relive all the things that made you the happiest child on earth, it won’t take long to realise how small and trivial those external factors were, you’ll come to terms with how precious your life actually is and that there is no reason for you to worry about things that might not even affect you in the long run.
Take the first step, don’t think twice:
I have been having a pretty hectic week from all my Uni work, I dread going through the whole day each time I wake up in the morning (in my case, noon… I do not have the most reputable sleeping pattern).
I just repeat the words “Just take the first step, Shwe….that’s all you need to do!”
The first step of any work is the hardest of them all; when you think about it, it’s not that hard at all… When you have to write the most dreaded paper that’s due in a week, just “take the first step” which is opening your syllabus, do you feel like you want to stop already??? say it with me… “take the first step” – open your text book and start reading, it would have been easier this time. Do not think about the effort you need to put, DO NOT think about the time it’s going to take you to do the work… just keep repeating,.. “take the first step”….
Surround yourself with the right people:
The pattern of all our attitudes, character and judgements heavily depends on the society you grew up in, the house you were raised in, the values that you were taught in childhood.
This is my sixth year in an environment where I really have to rely on good judgements when it comes to choosing friends or engaging in any kind of activity with these friends. There are friends that you might choose that your parents might not be happy about, then there are friends who just don’t let you grow or prosper. The second type of friends might be the reason for your ongoing insecurity and feeling of defeat, the saddest part of it is we fail to even realise it because we get too accustomed to the feeling of fitting in with this person.
Just spend some time to think about this, do you tend to not do something that you’d love to do just because this person is around?.. and do you do it often?
That is an indication that you need to see yourself out of that relationship.
Say it, write it in a paper and stick it on the wall, sing it. Just have these affirmations around with you.
Affirmations are not wishes, they are statements..
In affirmations, you don’t wish to be happier, you don’t want to be rich, you don’t wish to be motivated,… because you already are all those things.
You ARE happier,
You ARE rich
You ARE motivated.
As you say it, visualise yourself working out at the gym, or holding a wallet full of money or singing your favourite song or being the funniest person in the room. Close your eyes and try to feel the ground your doing your push ups on, hear the people applaud you for your joke and do it often.
I visualised myself living in Australia when I was in the 10th grade, I had the pictures of the Australian map on my wall.
Well… guess where I am now..