Ever feel like your motivation is a flickering flame that can’t withstand the wind of life’s challenges? You’re not alone, and we’re here to shed some light on this universal experience. We dig deep into the ebb and flow of motivation when striving towards goals, illuminating how external factors can extinguish our drive.
Switching gears, we’ll also tackle the concept of consistent, sustainable motivation. Using the striking analogy of a fire, we compare the erratic flames (your fluctuating motivation) to the steady warmth of the coals (your persistent drive).
Get ready to stoke your fire of motivation and keep it burning bright.
This Episode is For You If:
You are struggling with maintaining your motivation levels
You are in the process of setting new goals and need guidance
You want to understand how external factors influence your motivation
You are interested in exploring different interpretations of ‘consistency’
Click HERE to watch this video to learn The 3 Things to Avoid When Reading Self-Help Books
Listen to the Full Episode:
Welcome to the Mom On Purpose Podcast. I’m Lara Johnson and I’m here to teach you how to get out of your funk, be in a better mood, and play more with your kids. Manage your home better. Get your to-do list done and live your life on purpose with my proven method. This is possible for you, and I’ll show you how. You’re not alone anymore. We’re in this together. Hello, girl. It’s so good to talk to you today. I hope that you have been enjoying Summer. We’re about halfway through right now as I’m recording this podcast. And I will tell you that one of the things that drives me nuts about summer is when kids are all over the place, there’s no routine or schedule. So, this summer we’ve actually kept to a pretty consistent routine and schedule, and I love it. I think the best part though, of all of it, is that in the mornings I’m not getting up and rushing kids out the door, and as hard as it is having kids home, I think that right there is one of my absolute most favorite parts and I. I am so tired of the heat already. We’re just barely entering into the warmer months of July and the higher temperatures. Thankfully, it’s not as bad as last year. We had a crazy heat wave last year when I was pregnant and I was cranky all the time, but our AC has not been working the last little bit. And I have found that by about seven o’clock I am in such a bad mood. I don’t want to cook. I haven’t been cooking. We’ve been eating a lot of cereal or breakfast foods just because it’s too hot to turn the oven on. And we’ve been troubleshooting a lot and working with our AC people to see if we need to replace the whole unit, yada yada. Finally, I told my husband, I. I’m quitting. Lizzie shows up with a window unit from Costco and so he showed up yesterday with that and I installed it into the window, and I am amazed at what a better mood I am in. So, I just shared that with you. If you are feeling similar, just recognize that. Outside temperatures can affect our mood. I know we talk a lot about our thoughts, we talk a lot about you know, managing our mind, and there are some limitations to that, that sometimes your body is responding in a certain way based on external circumstances. So just recognize that, you know, wherever you’re at today. Listen to your body, and of course we are going to talk about your mind which is, you know, such an important part. And we do have so much control over that. And so, one of the things that I’ve been thinking about this episode, the thing that has really come to my mind is how to be more motivated. I like talking about motivation because I think this is one of the biggest obstacles that we all face when we’re answering our purpose, is that at some point the motivation feels like it runs out and like you come out of the gate really strong, you’re so excited you have that thing you want to work on. At some point you settle into the drudgery of all of it where it feels like an uphill battle. You keep hitting some roadblocks. You start to wonder if this really was the right thing. And so, it’s it. I want you to think about this in terms of you know, the goal cycle. You can go back and listen to past episodes on that, where you’re kind of watching the patterns that you go through. I’ll tell you; you know, I’ve watched my own patterns for a very long time. I’ve watched my clients’ patterns as well, and here’s what I will say, I’ve learned when someone is working on weight loss for the first time, I. There’s usually about a day, three or four before the motivation runs out. If someone is working on a business, there’s usually a lull around year or around like month six to 12 where it just feels so hard, and the motivation has run out. Sometimes even there, there will be another spot by about year three. If you, if it’s a hobby that seems to be a little bit longer before the motivation runs out, but. Without fail, the motivation runs out. It just has a different timetable based on the thing that you’re doing and based on the goal cycles that you go through. And so, I, I want you just to think about that in terms of yourself. You know, take a moment to consider that when I’m working towards something, when do I get to a spot where I feel like the motivation is gone, and we’re going to talk about what typically happens at that point. But I just want to dive into it on like, you know, this episode is for you is if you’ve ever said or thought that phrase, I need more motivation, and I’ve got to figure this out. I can’t keep going until I figure out how to get more motivation. Or if you’ve gotten into something and you feel like you need more motivation, and at some point, your brain starts thinking, okay, I need to change directions. Like this wasn’t totally right. I. Otherwise it would feel easier, or it would be more fun. And so, you start making some other decisions to bring in that finesse again. Or if you are always trying to seek out how to light that spark again, where you’re in the middle of it, like you felt really strongly when you came out of the gate and suddenly it feels like that spark has gone out. Or if you start adding in a bunch of new content. Books, programs, podcasts, and you think, okay I need to listen to this stuff so someone can get me motivated to keep going or if. You think you have to have that motivation, and as soon as that like magically bestows back on you, that suddenly you’ll have that whatever that thing is that you’re working towards, you know, you’re working toward your purpose and suddenly you’ll be making more money or things will just be easier. Your kids will be better behaved. If I just had more motivation and I could be more fun, and you’ll think that everything will just be easier once that motivation comes again. So, the reason why I start with that is I think it’s important to consider how most of us think about motivation and when I’m coaching my clients, this is the analogy that I often use. Most of us talk about motivation as like this magic fairy dust that if it’s just sprinkled on us, then we can fly to whatever goal that is that we’re working towards. And so, what will start to happen is we’ll seek out that magic fairy dust wherever we go, and we’ll keep seeking it and seeking it because we know, you know, this is what we think. We think as soon as that dust is back on us, then everything becomes easier and more fun again. So, I want, I, I want you just to think about that for a second and really consider, is that how you were thinking about motivation at this point? I. Do you think that as soon as someone sprinkles that motivation on you through a podcast or a book or a new program, that suddenly you’ll get that fire back and that everything will be easier, and you can reach your goal? And do you spend a lot of time seeking out motivation when you’re working towards something? So, I want to just for a second, offer a different analogy for your brain. I’m a Sagittarius. That’s a Zodiac sign. Regardless of what you think about Zodiac, I think they’re a lot of fun and I just. Think it’s a fun way to talk about ourselves and to communicate with other people and to see different personalities. And so, within Zodiac signs there’s different elements like fire, it would be mine. I’ve got some, I call them my water babies. Some of them, their water is their element. So, it, it is just fun for me because I don’t know, I just think it’s fun. So, Fire is my element sign. I’ve always, from a very young age, been fascinated by fire. I could sit and watch it for hours. So, I want to offer this analogy to you that motivation is more like lighter fluid. It’s not very dusty that you sprinkle on you that causes you to fly and reach whatever motivation is more like lighter fluid, that as soon as you put it on a fire, then it will help bring up a lot of the roaring flames. But it’s important to recognize that there is a difference in fire when you are considering cooking something. So, if you’ve ever gone camping, or if you haven’t, I’ll tell you, I. More about this if you’re trying to roast a marshmallow, for example, or you’re cooking a tinfoil dinner now, flames. They’re fun. Okay. They’re fun to watch. You know, they’re as they’re like moving through the air and they’re back and forth. They’re very unpredictable. It’s very, like when you’re trying to cook on an open flame, it’s very uneven heat, and it’s extremely hard to control. So, if you’ve got some roaring flames and you’re trying to cook a marshmallow for a smore, it’s very likely that you are going to burn your marshmallow and you won’t get at that perfect like even color. Same thing with like if you have these open flames and you put a tinfoil dinner on, chances are you’re going to have it pretty charred, and it may not cook all the way through. I. So I want you to think about that first. Okay. But then there’s another part of fire that to consider, and that is the coals underneath. So oftentimes when the fire starts to die down and it doesn’t have the roaring flames, there will be hot coals or embers underneath. Those are more uniform in their heat. They’re usually at a higher temperature. It’s easier to control and it’s better to cook on. So, I want you to think about this analogy when we’re considering motivation. Motivation is like the lighter fluid that’s going to get your flame really high, really fast, and you feel that, which is why you keep seeking more things out because. It’s fun to watch that big open flame, but if you are trying to create sustainable dreams, if you feel a purpose and you feel called to that purpose and you have a busy life already, you don’t want the unpredictable frame flame. You don’t want something that’s hard to control, that will. That is, has the potential to consume you. What you want is that steady, consistent, reliable, sustainable coals that are underneath, and that’s what I want you to consider. Yes, it feels fun to have that flame, you know, to take that motivation to light it on fire. But that is what, that’s not what will create your dreams and help you answer your purpose. Please let that sink in because. This right here. Like if you want that perfect marshmallow, if you want that dinner cooked all the way through, you’ve got to have those consistent flames under, or those consistent coals underneath. So, I want you to think about that. We’re going to, you know, transition just a little bit away from motivation and be. Considering, how do I be steadier? How do I be a more consistent whole when I’m working towards my dreams and my purpose? So, then, I think the first thing is to think about the word consistent. Now, when I have. Thought about this for myself, I really don’t like the word consistent because in my mind it meant I had to do something every single day. And it’s like if you tell me I have to do something every day, I’ll just get mad and rebel against it. It’s just the way my brain and body work. I’m like, I don’t ever want to be put in a box I don’t want to do, I don’t want to be told I have to do something every day. No, that’s just not me. But what I do like doing is, Returning again. So, when I think about it, for me, consistent doesn’t have to be daily. It’s just something that I return back to. Now when you’re considering consistent, I want you to think of if that word resonates with you. If not, think about some other words that could resonate with you. Another word that kind of speaks to me a little easier is steady. I am a steady person. I will continually show up. I will be that person that you can depend on. In a time of need. I am a steady person. It doesn’t mean I will be there every day. It doesn’t mean I will answer every text within five minutes, but I will always come back to the values I have and to the people that I love, and that really fills me with a lot of light. So, I want you just to consider that. You know, invite you to consider that for yourself on the words that you’re using is consistent or steady shame field, or does it feel really light to your body? So just take a moment to consider that because that will guide you through the next part that we’re going to talk about. So, when we’re looking at that consistent, that steady like warmth of the coal, this really comes from doing the things you already know, but you don’t want to. I wish I could give you some magic bullet, but that’s it. That is the magic bullet is to do the things that you know, but you don’t want to do. These will be the very unsexy things as you’re working towards your purpose. And I’ll tell you, I have. Pursued the sexy things for a long time, and that’s not what creates lasting results. Again, because it’s like that open flame. It’s very hard to control. It’s very unpredictable. It can go out very easily, but there’s a lot of purpose to having that steady, that consistent. It’s a lot safer. It burns a lot hotter. It will be what gets you to your purpose and helps you answer it. So, I want you to think about this, you know, what are the actionable steps in order to do this, you know, to do the things that you know. Maybe you don’t want to do it. So, think about something that you’re working towards. It may be weight loss; it may be a business idea. It may be writing a bio because you want to pursue a speaking opportunity. Or you are thinking about applying for a job and you have to write a resume and you haven’t written a resume. And you know, 10 years, you know, however long, maybe it’s been longer. So, I want you to think about that thing that you’re working towards. I want you to write down what you know to do right now without another program, without another article. What do you know to do? It might be as simple as opening the computer. It might be as simple as finding some socks and your shoes so that you can go for a walk. I don’t care what it is. Write down what you know to do. Then I want you to pick something that feels unsexy. It will sound boring, it will sound unfun. It will sound almost like monotonous. Okay? Think about that for just a second. And then go and do it. If you do this and you repeat it over and over. What will happen is you’ll start to prove to yourself that you can be consistent. You can return again, you can keep this underlying warmth steady within your body and control it, and it won’t have to ever consume you. But what will happen is the more that you do the things you know, but don’t want to do. You’ll look back and feel really motivated, and that’s the crazy thing you’ll actually start using. You’ll actually start feeling that motivation starts coming on stronger and stronger, and your flame will start getting brighter and brighter again, and it will ebb and flow throughout your life. You won’t always have that huge roaring flame, and you won’t always have those consistent coals underneath. But what will happen is that you’ll start feeling that steadiness all the way through that. There will be times when you will feel the excitement, but there will be times that you’re doing the unsexy and you don’t really want to do it. But that’s what will help you answer your purpose more than anything else. I really promise you that this alone is what will get you to whatever thing that you are working on. So, as you’re thinking about today, as you’re thinking about this next week, I want you to think about a time that you can do some unsexy things. It takes time to practice this skill just like any other skill that we talk about. And I promise you, the more you allow the unsexy stuff to get done, the more you’ll answer your purpose in a stronger and sustainable way. So, there you have it. I know you thought you were coming in for motivation. But the more you’re consistent, the more motivated you’ll feel long-term. And that’s what we’re working towards. We’re working towards the long-term game so that you can be answering your purpose while being the mom that you want to be. And that. It is a really fun place to be. Alright, so couple things. I mentioned it in our last podcast if, or maybe the last couple podcasts. If you go down to the show notes, I created something that’s super helpful for you. It is a way for you to join our book club. And I’ll tell you about that in just a second. But it’s also a free video for you if you like a lot of self-help videos or books. This applies to all of that. It’s a very short video and it’s the three things to avoid when reading self-help books and you can apply that, you know, to anything. But what I also love about this is when you sign up for that video, you also get an invitation to the Mom On Purpose book club. I love this book Club It. We meet once a month and it is a way for you to come in and learn in one hour of a new book. And I like it because it’s kind of like the Cliff Notes version that we used to read in high school for our book reports when we really didn’t have time, or we procrastinated too long, and we had to write a book report for our English class. It’s kind of like that. But more fun because there’s no book report, so that gives you an opportunity to see what books are coming up and so that you can sign up for that calendar. It will add to your calendar that you’re already using, and then you’ll also get emailed a list of all the books we’re doing for this next year, or I guess in this year. And it has a short, like book club guide for you that with each book club you can really, you know, you can take a couple notes and write down your main takeaways so that your life can be changed without having to take the time to read the book. I actually read it and I’ll teach it to you. So, there you have it. Go down to the show notes. Sign up for your free video. Three things to avoid Reading, self-Help Books. Have a wonderful day. I’ll talk to you soon. Thank you for listening. Please share, review, and subscribe to this podcast so that together we can live life on purpose.