I am writing this as a way to figure it out for myself, here is what I found and what has worked for most of the people I know….
Today, I was supposed to go to my Spartan Endurance training at 5.30am, and I woke up at 6am. I am really frustrated with myself for not being able to stick to my commitment and feeling bad for myself. So, Sat with my Laptop and Tea and started to ponder over how can I be more consistent, what do I need to do to motivate myself to accomplish the goals I set for myself?
Did an Introspection on myself and what had worked for me in the past? what were the triggers? what was the driving force for those goals? I can think of quite a number of things…so based on all the Information I learnt,and that I tested and worked in the past. here are my quick 3 realizations,
1. Its Self discipline and Not Motivation that we need for accomplishing a goal.
Motivation makes us feel good, releases the endorphins that makes us feel good and happy, when we watch a movie/video/picture and it wades out after a while. Then, how can we have a consistent behavior to grow and progress towards our goals? Its Self discipline.
How can we get it? Here are some Ideas, according to
Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit, explains that habit behaviors are traced to a part of the brain called the basal ganglia – a portion of the brain associated with emotions, patterns, and memories. Decisions, on the other hand, are made in the prefrontal cortex, a completely different area. When a behavior becomes habit, we stop using our decision-making skills and instead function on auto-pilot. Therefore, breaking a bad habit and building a new habit not only requires us to make active decisions, it will feel wrong. Your brain will resist the change in favor of what it has been programmed to do. The solution? Embrace the wrong. Acknowledge that it will take a while for your new regime to feel right or good or natural. Keep chugging along. It will happen.
How do we apply this to our practical problems? Say to form a new habit,
Run 3 times a week
Remove all temptations and distractions out of the way and remove all the little obstacles that can come in the way. Plan the previous night, what you are going to wear, what you will eat, how long would you need to do the foam rolling or for stretching? Have all the items necessary for the run next to you, so you don’t waste your will power in making all this trivial decisions in the morning. Now when you wake-up, the decision is already made and its in auto pilot. Some of the runners shared , they would name their treadmills, For example., you can name your treadmill Jessie or Sandra, whatever you want to call it and when you humanize it, we tend not to disappoint our friends. Today I didn’t show up to the meeting with Jessie:-(, so come up with your own and be creative.
Also checkout Jacko Willink’s Interview on Tim ferriss’s podcast The Scariest Navy Seal to learn more about gaining Self discipline.
2. Eat Healthy
Nothing new here, when we Eat healthy and natural foods, we can avoid the cravings. For ex., by eating fruits, research shows our body’s cravings for sugar reduces. Always, have healthy snacks with you, because when you are hungry the brain doesn’t get enough glucose and wont work at the optimal capacity. To learn more, check this Brain Fuel
3. Reward yourself
Self discipline is hard, have some ways to reward yourself. Working on Loosing weight, have a cheat meal on Saturday. Working on your Financial goals, reward yourself by buying little toy that makes you happy. Working on your Gym goals, reward yourself with a Massage once a week.
Also, be careful on not to go overboard, ran on the treadmill for 30 mts and going crazy through the weekend drinking and eating all the greasy food you can find :-(, not the ideal reward. Try to keep it to 1 Cheat meal a week, or decide what makes sense for you.
I love my Indian Dum Biryani, not the Ideal diet, so I have that as my reward once a week, in smaller portions.
Don’t beat yourself up when things don’t go the way you want, the Anger, frustration and disappointment are all normal, don’t dwell on it too long. Get back on it it ASAP, the longer you stay away from your game, much harder it is to get back on the rhythm of things.
Alright ladies and gentlemen, let me get back on my saddle now for my missed workout today:-), these are some Ideas that worked for me. What are some of yours? Whatever it is, Please share and I am eager to learn.
Have a wonderful day!!!