Keeping Motivation In Your Life

It happens to all of us at some point in our lives. If you are like me, it happens not once, but many times. We lose our motivation to do certain things. It could be a new week, month, or year and there is excitement in the air for wanting to accomplish what you did not do last week, last month, or last year. Then all of the sudden, that eagerness is gone. What happened to it? Putting things off seems to be the norm in many people’s lives, myself included. Here it is the last day of September 2013. Where did the summer go? Where did the year go? Fall is here. Winter is coming and the holidays will be here soon. Did you get everything done this month that you wanted done? In another month or so the news will start airing stories about motivation and new years resolutions. Why is that we need these reminders year after year? What keeps us from improving our lives? What can we do to put that motivation back into our lives?

A simple definition from psychologytoday.com on motivation, is “…the desire to do things.”  First you have to want to accomplish something. If that want is not there, there is no desire. You cannot have that desire given to you. You have to want it for yourself. Many of us have it to start with. Along the way many of us encounter a road block and instead of going over it, through it, or around it, we turn around and quit. For myself, I can honestly say I have never turned around and quit. I have lost my motivation, but I do not turn around and quit. I sit at that road block and think about how to go around it. It may take me months to go around it, but I do not quit. Motivation comes and goes in my life, but the key is never giving up.

There are so many examples I could talk about and this piece on motivation may turn into an ongoing blog article. There is so much to write about on losing, keeping, and struggling with motivation. One example for me is over the last several years I have started running for exercise. Growing up, two of my brothers were runners and they were running stars in my eyes. They were awesome and I was jealous because I had no motivation to do that. It wasn’t until much later in life, into adulthood, where I had that motivation to run. I started running on my treadmill first because I was too shy to get outside and run. I started out slow, but always had a goal in mind for the next run. It really didn’t take long and that desire to run was there. I found myself missing it on the days I did not run. I was able to run longer and a little bit faster. I started to enjoy running and thought nothing could break me away from it. I was wrong! Suddenly my desire to run was gone. It has happened many times before. It could be a vacation, a long weekend get a way, or the holidays and that disrupts my regular running schedule. As soon as my running schedule is disrupted, my desire to run is gone. It takes me a while to get back into it. It happened recently once again because of a week long vacation in August. We went on vacation and once I was home, that desire to run was gone. It took me a while, but I forced myself to get out there and run once again. For me, it only takes that one time and I am back. The desire is back and the want is back. Today is my day off from running and I sit here thinking about tomorrow when I can go for another run.

Going through this whole process of having the motivation and losing the motivation and gaining it back again has made me wonder, why can’t I keep this motivation at all times? Why do I have to lose the desire to run? How do I keep the desire with me at all times? What I have learned for myself is that talking to myself helps. It sounds strange, but when I tell myself what a good job I am doing with my running it keeps me going. Motivate yourself! Talk positive to yourself. Say uplifting things for encouragement to keep yourself going. Another thing that helps me is to have a goal in mind and focus on it. The longest run I have accomplished is 5.5 miles and I haven’t been back there in a couple of years! My longest run now is 4 miles. My goal is to keep the motivation going and reach that 5.5 mile mark once again. Something else that will help keep that desire going is to drop the bad habits. Whatever is getting in your way of accomplishing your goal, get rid of it! My bad habit that gets in the way of my running is negative talk. I have been the one that compares myself to others and I have to tell myself over and over that my running is not a race. I run for me. If it takes me longer to run and longer overall to reach my goal, fine, just don’t give up! One last, but certainly not least piece of motivation that keeps me going is my brothers. You see I grew up with three older brothers and no sisters. Two of my brothers were cross country and track runners while the other was physically and mentally disabled. I now only have one living brother. He lives close by with his wife and two kids and he continues to be motivation to keep my running going. My oldest brother, another running star, keeps me going even though his physical body is not here anymore. When I run I hear his voice. I run for him because he is not here to do so anymore. My other wonderful brother that has passed on did not have an easy life. When I run I think of him. I run for him because he was not able to do so in this life. All three of my brothers are my motivation in their own way.

So whatever is causing you to lose your motivation, find your way back. It is not easy, but if that desire is there, you will accomplish your goal. You will have road blocks along the way, but you will learn to go around them instead of turning around and quitting. Stay positive. Say encouraging things to yourself along the way. Surround yourself with positive people and drop the bad habits. If you focus on your goal and never lose that focus, you will have that desire to keep going.

Thank You To My Followers!

I just want to shout out a big THANK YOU to my followers. I started this blog the beginning of this month and I already have over 30 followers. Maybe not a big deal to you, but to me it is huge! I am just a women who loves to write and who is working towards a goal of being published one day. I was not expecting to have over 30 followers for my first month, so thank you to everyone who follows my blog and thank you to everyone who reads it. Even if I reach one person and brighten their day, the blog is worth it.  As always, feel free to leave comments. Thank you again!

Why Worry?

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We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same.                                         – Carlos Casteneda

Hi! My name is Lisa & I am a worrier! For as long as I can remember, I have always been on worry overload. “What if” this and “what if” that? I have never been one to relax very easily. There is always something on my mind and it usually involves worrying of some kind. Letting things go is difficult for me. I wonder at times how my blood pressure can be normal! I wonder how I made it this far in life without having a nervous breakdown. Or wait…maybe I have had a nervous breakdown! Either way, I am still alive and kicking.

I came across this quote and it made me stop and think about why I stress out so much. The quote says…”The amount of work is the same.” If I am doing the same amount of work in my worrying, why not put that effort into something positive? Even though it is so difficult for me to think positively and lessen my worry, I think it is time for me to try. A friend told me today that life has a way of working itself out. Most of the stuff we worry about, never comes true. How much longer will it take for me to actually believe that? I think it is time for me to take deep breaths, not worry about what is going to happen next week, next month, or next year, and just live. I am going to take my energy that I put into worrying and transfer that to something positive. I won’t be able to do that over night or even 100% of the time, but I can start on a different path towards a better way of living.

What Is Stopping You From Living?

Money. The cause of so much stress in one person’s life and happiness in another person’s life. It makes some people go crazy to the point where they obsess over how to make more. Some good ideas and some bad ideas. We are all trying to obtain money. We need it to live, to pay bills, to buy groceries, etc…  There are certain individuals who have too much of it and don’t know what to do with it and lose it all. Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone had enough money to the point where there was no poverty and everyone was comfortable with their own income? If you could do anything in this world you wanted and money was not an issue, what would you do?

Would you travel the world?

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Would you live in a castle?

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Would you create the most beautiful garden?

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Would you buy an island?

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Or would you do none of those things? Maybe you would create your own business or charity. Maybe you would give to other people more. Maybe you would go after the career you really wanted. Maybe you would drop your career all together! Maybe you would write a book. Whatever you would do if money was not an option, why not go for it now? Sure I do understand that buying an island and living in a castle is a little out of reach for most people, but the point is to go for your dream. Don’t let any excuse stop you. I always use money as an excuse to not do something. I can’t travel much because I don’t have the money to do so. I can’t go after my dream career of being a writer because we need money coming in. A good friend of mine tells me to write my goals down (with money not being a reason to not do something) and your goals will eventually be accomplished. Well, guess what? My husband and I took not only one, but two vacations this past summer. Did we have the money to do so? Yes and no. We just did it. Life is too short to not do what you want. What am I doing now? Working towards my dream career of being a writer. I am just doing it. I am trying not to worry about the money issue. I am just working towards my goal and that is enough. So whatever you are putting off today because of money or any other excuse, stop putting it off and go for it! If you don’t go for it now, you never will.

About all you c…

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About all you can do in life is be who you are. Some people will love you for you. Most will love you for what you can do for them, and some won’t like you at all.
– Rita Mae Brown

Be all you can be! How many times have we all heard that phrase? How many of us have listened? I think my ears are now just starting to listen. I think my heart is now just starting to open up to the possibilities of what life can bring if you work towards it and want it bad enough.

Be yourself. Be true to yourself. Live a good life, but be yourself. Besides, it is no fun being someone else! Don’t let the “what if’s?” get you down or discourage you. Don’t worry about what others think of you. “…Most will love you for what you can do for them, and some won’t like you at all.” Yes, there will be some people in your life who will only like you because of what you are doing for them (people at work, maybe) and other people won’t like you at all. “About all you can do it in life is be who you are.” It all comes down to that. Live a good life, but be who you are!

Lesson’s Learned, Part One

So many of us go through life, or part of our lives, not paying attention. Sometimes, myself included. We are in such a hurry to go about our day and finish our day just to get up and do it all over again. We drive too fast, we hurry conversations, we hurry in and out of the stores, we rush our errands, and we wish the work day or school day away. Why? What is the point? When we hurry we are more likely to be involved in an accident, to miss a key point in a conversation, miss someone’s call for help, forget about something or someone, and miss the important things in life. Slow down, pay attention to the road, and enjoy the scenery while driving.  Enjoy your time with family & friends and don’t rush your time with them. When you are rushing your errands remember the home-bound people who can not get out of the house. This brings me to a lesson learned: slow down your life! You or your loved one’s life will be gone before you know it.

We live in a world of want this and want that. It is always a want before a need. I am guilty of this most of the time. However, I am changing my thinking and habits on this. We keep up with the latest technology, we want the newest vehicles, kids want the latest toys, book lovers want that new book as soon as it comes out, movie lovers must see that movie as soon as it is released, and the same with music. Up until recently I always thought I needed my wants in order to be happy and live life to the fullest. I forgot about my needs. What are your most important needs? Mine? To feel loved, to spend time with family & friends, to have a roof over my head, to have enough money to buy groceries and pay bills. Notice I did not say my most important need is the latest laptop, tablet, cell phone, book, or DVD. Not too long ago I would become jealous of anyone with the latest technology, with a bigger house, with a newer car, or with a better job. Another lesson learned: Enjoy what you have because most people don’t have what you have. If other people have what you want, be happy for them because more than likely they worked for it and earned it. If your needs are met and you have a want in mind, well then, work for it. Don’t expect it to be handed to you.

Every time I turn the news on I hear of shootings, people being killed, and the talk of war. I also hear about too many friends fighting, too many families in conflict with each other, and people talking about other people behind their back. Everyone knows of a friend or family member who is not getting along with someone. In fact, many of those situations have been going on for so long that they either forgot why they are fighting or they don’t care anymore about what caused it. People, please let it go! Life is so short. Don’t engage in gossip. You have no idea what it is like to be in another person’s shoes. Even if you think you do or you have been involved in a similar situation, everyone handles things differently. Lesson learned: Don’t judge other people. Try helping them instead!

Over the years my eyes have been opened to more important things in life. I am learning to let the past go. I am learning to not care what other people think of me. I am learning to let life play out. I understand if I really want something bad enough, I need to work for it. I am putting my time and effort into more important things such as spending more time with family & friends, volunteering, spoiling my niece & nephew’s, spoiling my cats, and yes, even putting myself first before anything else! It may be time to rethink you life and the way you live it. Don’t let it be too late before your eyes are opened to the more important things in life.

I have not fail…

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I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.
– Thomas Edison

Another one of my favorite quotes. I said in an earlier post that I believe failure does not exist unless you give up and stop trying. Here is another reason to not give up on your dreams!