Have you ever lost your motivation and couldn’t find it again? I mean LOST…as in completely disappeared and unretrievable. I have, and it sucks! What sucks even more is that people, even experts, can’t always tell you how to get it back. So many articles on motivation give you a list of gimmicks to try to help you move past your motivational malaise.
You’ve read the blogs and articles that tell you to: Go for a walk. Make a list and just do one thing. Set a timer. Plan a reward for your work. Those suggestions are fine for a minor lack of motivation, but what if that’s not the real problem? So many times, it’s not. For me, the problem was much, much deeper.
I was a workaholic for years. I was “that” woman…the one who was involved with everything and did it all with style. My friends would shake their heads and say, “I don’t know how you get so much done.” I LOVED being busy and productive. I thrived on it. Then one day, everything changed.
I’m not sure when it happened, but one day I realized I’d stopped doing all the things I loved. I had quit writing. I’d quit blogging. I’d quit working out. I’d quit going line dancing. I quit hanging out with my friends. And I had no motivation to do any of it anymore.
Deep inside I was discontent. I wanted to write some books I’d been plotting in my head. But I couldn’t find the motivation to start.
I wanted to start this blog. For years. But I just could bring myself to move forward.
I wanted to go dancing and work out again. I was putting on weight and getting really out of shape. But I didn’t have the mental energy to get myself moving.
I tried all the suggestions. I read articles and books and tried to find the reason I couldn’t muster a single bit of self-discipline and willpower, and yet…nothing.
I was stuck in a total rut of binge-watching Netflix and eating all the potato chips in the house. Not a good combination! And I was so sick of myself. My head cycled through the same thoughts over and over. “You need to make a decision and get to work.” I would feel this momentary sense of determination and think, “I’m gonna do something. I’m gonna start that blog.”
Three minutes later I was second-guessing myself, talking myself out of it. I felt so indecisive and unsure even though I wanted to be the opposite. I would beat myself up, wondering what had happened to that woman who used to run circles around everyone and was always sure of her next step in life. Where was she and could I find her again?
Then something happened.
I joined a support group for women who wanted to lose weight, hoping it would help me find some motivation to drop the pounds I’d put on. The group received a lot of lessons on emotional eating and unproductive behaviors. We learned why we engaged in these behaviors and how to begin to change them into actions that work for us.
One of the exercises we performed was called a TDL, or thought download. When we were having a moment of weakness or experiencing a breakdown of self-control, we were asked to sit down and let all the thoughts and feelings in our heads and hearts pour out onto a sheet of paper. We were then given guidelines about how to process the info and reframe out thoughts in a healthier perspective.
It worked to help me stop eating at the wrong times and for the wrong reasons.
I wondered if it would work for other areas of my life.
One day I was at my wits end with myself and my constant second-guessing. I’d even told my husband that “I think something is seriously broke inside me because I just can’t pull it together.” I grabbed one of my TDL worksheets and started writing. Twenty minutes later, I was a changed woman. During that writing session, just letting it all spill out in a big, messy blob, I made a VERY important discovery.
I had stopped trusting my own judgment.
Several years back I’d gone through a very painful divorce. I’d been betrayed by two people who I thought loved me—two people who should have had my best interests at heart. And I hadn’t seen it coming at all. I was completely blindsided, and everything I’d known, everything I’d trusted and believed, came crumbling down around me. I had been horribly wrong about so many things!
In that moment, I think I decided subconsciously that my judgment was flawed. I couldn’t trust myself to make good decisions because look how some of the biggest decisions of my life had turned out. I had totally bombed.
Now we both know that it wasn’t entirely my judgment to blame. I was just one person in the whole messy scenario, and the one with the least amount of culpability. But my subconscious mind didn’t get that memo.
The logical mind can identify the flaws in our thinking and find ways to process the information. But the sub-conscious mind is sneaky. If you aren’t aware of what’s eating at you, you can’t find workarounds. I had been locked and blocked from my motivation for years because I hadn’t been able to identify and process the fact that I had stopped trusting in my own judgment.
Once I worked through that issue, it was like someone had blown up a dam inside of me and rivers of motivation started flowing again! I had sooooo much motivation, which led to so much productivity! I started working out. I started dancing again. I started this blog. I began writing thousands of words a day again. I quit binge-watching Netflix and eating potato chips all the time. I was too busy pursuing my passions to sit in front of the TV!
I wake up in the morning excited about my day again. I can’t wait to get up and get to work adding to my blog, or writing a book, or going dancing with my husband. My days are full and satisfying, and all that inner angst is gone. I figured out what was blocking my motivation. I wish I’d been able to figure it out so much sooner so I didn’t waste so many months and years stuck in my rut.
The good news is, I’m sharing my experience so you don’t have to waste any more time. Learn from my example. Dig into your subconscious and find out what’s been blocking you from moving forward. What’s holding you back? Figure it out. Fix it! And get in touch with your inner passions and drive again.
If you’re interested in trying the method that I used, download the free worksheet I used to uncover my real issues and move past them. Just add your name to the form below and I’ll send you the worksheet!
You deserve to “heart your life!” I want to help!