Stay motivated by finding your why

I’ve been in the fitness industry since 1994, and I’ve witnessed the same thing. Every. Single. Year.

As we near the close of yet another year, and with the holidays just around the corner, most of us will simply shut it down until “next year.” Then January will roll around, and in droves people will pack the gym for about two months before the vast majority begins to drop out by March once again.

So the question is, what makes or breaks one’s success? I’ve found that most of it boils down to motivation. But what is motivation? The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as, “The act or process of giving someone a reason for doing something; the act or process of motivating someone.”

While that may provide a simple answer, it obviously runs a little deeper than that. What is it specifically that’s going to make you “act” and become the change that you’ve been chasing after all these years?

Simply put, what is your why? The sooner you start asking yourself that question, the sooner you’ll begin to see your motivation levels rising. And in turn, the mental and physical metamorphosis can begin.

• Visualize: Close your eyes and think of a time when you felt completely empowered, a moment in which you were in complete flow and felt unstoppable, confident, driven, with laser-like vision and focus. Success wasn’t a matter of if, it was only a matter of when.

Seriously – take a few minutes to do this. Don’t wait. Do it now. OK, open your eyes. Did you feel the energy in you shift? Perhaps you feel a buzz throughout your body, an increase in mental clarity, but most importantly, don’t you feel more inspired to move now? It’s what we are naturally driven to do. So whenever you’re “not feeling it,” just using this simple technique can flip the motivational switch we desperately need at times.

• Get emotional: Take a moment to really process the impact that changing your mental and physical makeup will have not only on yourself, but on those around you. What would it mean? How would it make you feel to be a positive role model to friends and family? The sense of accomplishment of completing that half marathon you’ve always wanted to do, being able to share in the joy and blissfulness of “actively” engaging with your children in play, rather than being a spectator.

The goal of this is to intuitively find what resonates with you most and feel the emotions that it brings out and serves to drive you through it all. Don’t overthink it. Usually, it’s the first thing that comes to mind. For me personally, it’s my kids. Just become still and ask, “What is it for me?” The answer is in us all – you just have to ask.

• Take your power back: In other words, don’t play victim. The instant you begin to blame your circumstance with phrases beginning with “My job, … ” “My husband/wife, … ” “My friends, … ” is the moment you give all of your power away. You need to take your power back and remember that change is 100 percent up to you with anything in your life. Position the people in your life to serve as a supportive cast as opposed to antagonists. “Loved ones” are called that for a reason! And if the people you surround yourself with truly care, they will naturally get on board and ride the whole way.

• Feel good now: Don’t wait for the results to come before you start feeling good about yourself. Get beyond the need for external validation. Otherwise, the journey becomes one of the metaphorical treadmill – constantly moving without truly going anywhere. Satisfaction with the process and who you are becoming begins right NOW. Build the internal rhythm of how you want to feel in unison with the external goals you are seeking. After all, it is our thoughts, feelings and beliefs that serve as the catalyst to our experience. Why not make it a rewarding and fulfilling one throughout the entire journey, not just when you “get there.” So wait no longer – because everything you’ve ever wanted to accomplish is in front of you. Right there and right now.