We all start off our weight loss program with high hopes and motivation. After all, that’s the whole reason we took action in the first place.
But that initial spark of motivation rarely lasts long. Within weeks we’re back to our regular selves wondering how to get out of this funk. We beat ourselves up and question our ability to ever be able to lose weight.
Should I just give up? Am I missing something? Why is this not working?!?
What’s Your Motivation?
Everyone’s motivation for losing weight is different. There isn’t a right or wrong answer. It’s whatever moves you to take action.
But what gets you going isn’t always what’s going to keep you going.
I’ve found that when people focus on appearance as their sole reason for wanting to lose weight that their motivation tends to dwindle.
Weight loss is such a slow process that people generally don’t have the patience to see it through. They need more instant gratification and losing weight doesn’t give that to them.
Instead, I like to see people going deeper. We really try to define our “why” for losing weight.
The true reasons tend to elicit a strong emotional response. It’s this emotion that gives us a sense of real purpose.
When you’re struggling with motivation make sure your why is strong enough and that you are constantly revisiting it. Move beyond surface levels reasons and go deeper.
What benefits do you get from losing weight? Why is that important to you? How will your relationships change? Will they change? Should they change? Will other people see you differently? Will it matter? Will your confidence improve?
Ask yourself these questions. Uncover your true motivation for change.
Are You Enjoying the Process?
The other big reason motivation disappears is people aren’t enjoying the process. They get so focused on the end goal of weight loss that they forget it’s just the side effect of the process of enjoying moving your body and eating healthy foods.
If you don’t like moving your body and exercising, and you don’t like the food you’re eating, it doesn’t matter how much weight you lose – you’ll never stick with it.
Motivation comes from enjoying the exercise you do and the food you eat – not the results that they give you.
When you focus on the now and process you get the instant gratification that’s necessary to keep the motivation cycle going. You do the exercise you do because it makes you feel amazing.
It challenges you. It makes you feel more confident. It feels good to move your body.
When you make that association your motivation becomes self-reinforcing. Action, reward. Action, reward. There’s no waiting for the end result to happen.
So make sure every choice you’re making is because you actually like it – not the result it gives you. Choose exercise you love. Eat food that gives you satisfaction and makes you feel good.
Stay mindful of that positive association. Make the connection between what you do and how it makes you feel.
You’ll never question your motivation or dedication to change again.