Part 5 of 5
I decided to break this topic up into 5 parts to allow me to share some deeper thoughts that I have on each individual tip and to make it easier to digest for you, the reader. So let’s get started.
In parts 1 through 4, we talked about the importance of having a morning and evening routine, explained what a vision board is and how it can be a powerful tool to keep you motivated and on track, how making a public statement of your intentions to accomplish a goal will hold you accountable, and, that it’s not that hard to eat an elephant. Let’s move on to the final step:
#5 – What is your “WHY”
The fifth and final way to motivate yourself daily is to have a “WHY”. Ask yourself why you are doing the things that you are doing. If your goal is to lose weight, why? Is it for better overall health? Because you want to look good in that swimsuit come summertime? Because you want to be in shape to run a half marathon with your best friend from college? WHY? Having a WHY will get you back on track to accomplishing your goals and will motivate you to stay there.
A good example of just how important having a WHY is when it comes to staying motivated and accomplishing your goals is our Appalachian Trail thru hike journey. If you didn’t know, we had planned for about five years to hike the AT and on March 4, 2020 we set out from Amicalola Falls in Georgia on our way to Mt. Katahdin in Maine to complete our dream. Covid-19 made us press the pause button that year, but that’s another story. Our WHY for wanting to put ourselves through extreme physical, mental, and emotional challenges over a 6 month period had to be very clear and very easy to recall in the spur of the moment when we were ready to give up! Your WHY, whether it’s a photo of your family, a handwritten note from a friend who you give inspiration to, your dog who loves that you take her out every morning for a run, is what is going to keep you going when you are tired, bored, or just plain fed up.
Your WHY will make you see the rainbow through the rain.
Your WHY is key to seeing the finish line and realizing your goals.
Your WHY should become your daily mantra, something that you can easily recall and repeat to yourself frequently to keep you focused on the end goal. My WHY for the AT thru hike is “because of Grandma Gatewood”.** That is just a simple statement that allows me to recall the bigger, more important reason that I am hiking. On hard days, I just have to say those few words to myself and I eventually get out of my head, feel better about the day, and finish the miles. If you were to hike the Appalachian Trail, your WHY might something like “because it’s hard”, or “for inner strength”.
If you need something more concrete than just repeating something over and over in your head, you could write out your WHY on a small piece of paper that you can take out of your wallet or pocket and physically hold in your hand and feel and see.
Maybe it’s an inspiring quote that you saved on your cell phone that you can pull up and look at when you need a little emotional boost. Sometimes talking to a friend or family member could be your WHY. Just hearing their voice and having them cheer you on can be very uplifting. This is a very personal thing and you need to decide what works best for you.
This concludes the five part series “5 Ways to Motivate Yourself Daily”.
To recap, step #1 is to have a morning and evening routine in place. Step #2 is to create a vision board that reflects your dreams and goals. Step #3 is stating your intentions to friends and family and having a plan to follow through with. Step #4 is breaking down your goals into small, manageable “bites” making eating that elephant possible. And step #5 is having a WHY that will get your thoughts and feelings back on track when you start to feel discouraged or overwhelmed.
I hope you found some useful suggestions here and can start putting them to use in your daily routine. I know staying on track can be challenging at times but when you start checking things off of your list and can see the results of your hard work the motivation to continue will just come naturally.
** If you don’t know who Grandma Gatewood was, she was a bad-ass gal who overcame incredible hardships in her life and decide, at the age of 67, to hike the Appalachian Trail after reading about it in a National Gegraphic magazine article. She was also the first woman to hike the entire trail alone and the first person, man or woman, to walk it twice and then three times.
Here is a link to the book, Grandma Gatewood’s Walk, found on Amazon:
Thoughts shared by Kris