When you’re motivated, your brain is fixated on all the things you will get by making the changes. You’ll focus on positive outcomes such as, “I’ll look better, I’ll feel better, I’ll fit in my clothes, I’ll get more dates, I’ll reverse my health issues,” and the list goes on. As your brain registers these benefits and if you really, really want to see these things happen, your motivation level will be very high.
What’s the One Mental Trick to Change?
So, what shift could occur that will stop you dead in your tracks?
The moment your brain switches to focusing on how much work it takes to go to the gym, cook your food, avoid certain foods, and navigate certain situations, your motivation will abruptly disappear.
You see, people that remain motivated over time never see the things that must be done in order to change as work or a hassle; rather, they see the work through a different set of lenses, so to speak. They just see the cooking and working out as essential to get to where they want to go, so it never bothers them or never crosses their minds that it’s work.
On the other hand, people who feel overwhelmed, busy, or stressed switch their viewpoint and see it all as work. By doing this, they now associate all the steps that are necessary to lose weight as a pain in the ass or as work. Let’s face it: at the end of a long, stressful day, people don’t want to work! What they want to do is relax and ease their burdens. When people see the steps to losing weight as a joy or just part of what they do, it’s not perceived as work. But when they see it as work, they set themselves up to fail.
These two points of view explain why one person will go home, kick off his shoes, turn on the TV, and dive into a bag of chips, while another person with the exact same stress-load will come home, fire up the grill, and start cooking before watching TV. As a competitive bodybuilder, I never once focused on what I had to give up in order to reach my competitive state. Instead, I stayed focused for years on what I received, not on what I had to give up. And trust me, I gave up a lot over the 30 years I competed. I missed parties, excursions, going out to the bars with friends, and so on. But once again, I really didn’t miss out on any of those things because I got to be a bodybuilder!
Keep in mind that the pain-pleasure principles I’ve discussed so often are also at play here. At some point, the pain of NOT doing what needs to be done becomes greater than the pain of just doing those things that will help you move forward.
In other words, you realize that it is easier to change than it is to stay the same. Here’s a great example of what I’m trying to get at. The other day, I saw a 28-year old client that had come to see me two years ago. He hadn’t done very well and he admitted to me that he just wasn’t motivated back then. Now, though, he was super motivated and was excited to get on track. When I asked him what changed he said, “I was at home, laying on the couch watching Netflix when it dawned on me that I was totally wasting my life watching TV. And I had the sudden realization that I could really change a lot about myself if I used the same time I spent watching TV on getting food prepped and working out!”
In my estimation, I could see that he was beginning to experience self-loathing by wasting his life, and this realization was far more painful than taking better care of himself.
All action starts as a thought in your mind. Try these mental reframing techniques in your approach to your nutrition and training program. It will pay off in getting better, more consistent results over time.
If you desire more personalized one on one coaching to help you reach your goals more quickly and keep them over time, I am glad to help. Be sure to check out our Lean Body Coaching program at www.leanbodycoaching.com.
Please Let Us Know If You Enjoyed This Article.
Your Feedback Is Important To Us
Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only and is not meant as medical advice, nor is it to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Please consult your physician before starting or changing your diet or exercise program. Any use of this information is at the sole discretion and responsibility of the user.