External motivation can fire us up temporarily, but sustained motivation must be manually coaxed into existence through disciplined effort. When your workout alarm goes off a 5:00 AM in the morning, don’t wait for motivation to get you up. You’ll learn strategies that will make getting up easier, but ultimately, you’ll have to push yourself. You set that alarm for a reason. You don’t need motivation to get-up. You need discipline. Each daily workout will be another small win that will provide a little more inspiration. As you begin to feel and look better, you’ll become even more motivated. After you have pushed yourself enough times to make daily exercise a habit, you’ll need less and less willpower to get-up each morning. You will begin to crave the way you feel after your morning workouts. It will become a positive addiction. Continue reading LET’S GET REAL, LET’S GET MOTIVATED
What you are going to learn:
- Why Habits are so Powerful and Potentially Dangerous
- The Three Elements of a Habit
- How a Better Understanding of Habits can Help Us Replace Bad Habits with Good Ones
- A Simple Approach to Overcoming our Natural Resistance to Change
- Why We Often Blame our Lack of Willpower when it is usually our Lack of Commitment that is to Blame
People often say that change is difficult, and they are correct. Change is difficult, but we are all capable of change. Our lives are continually changing, learning to drive, marriage, having children, new job responsibilities, and new technological tools. Initiation is the most challenging phase of any change because when we are learning to perform new tasks, it is mentally exhausting. Learning to perform a new activity requires our cerebral cortex (“Conscious Brain”) to do the heavy lifting.
As the new task becomes routine, the more resilient basal ganglia, (“subconscious brain’), takes over. The action becomes easier and easier to perform. Our conscious brain essentially goes on autopilot, and the actions flow almost effortlessly. You undoubtedly experienced this when you were learning to drive. In the beginning, it required all of your mental focus, but now you can drive, adjust the cabin temperature, tune the radio, carry on a conversation, and heaven forbid, use your smartphone while driving.
Change is possible, but it starts with awareness. The hardest part of creating a change in behavior is just not repeating the behaviors of the past. Approximately 40 to 45% of the decisions we make are out of habit.[i] Unfortunately, these aren’t conscious decisions. These are decisions our conscious brain has delegated to the subconscious brain. Our subconscious mind controls the performance of repetitive daily activities which frees our conscious mind from making countless decisions each day, which would lead to decision fatigue and mental exhaustion. For this reason, we aren’t mindful of actions we have repeated enough times to make them habits.
Continue reading “CHANGE IS DIFFICULT, BUT WITH THE RIGHT STRATEGIES AND A LITTLE MOTIVATION, WE ARE ALL CAPABLE OF GREAT CHANGE”
The next biggest lie about living a disciplined lifestyle is that it requires a marathon of effort. It doesn’t. It only requires you manifest enough discipline and motivation to make the routine a habit. The initial resistance we encounter doesn’t last beyond a couple of months. The authors of The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Truth Behind Extraordinary Results say success is not a marathon of disciplined action. It is a sprint fueled by just enough discipline to build a habit. Habits are harder to start than they are to sustain. The key is to identify the behavior you need to adopt and then work at it long enough to make it a habit.
Be careful of your words, for your words become your actions.
Be careful of your actions, for your actions become your habits.
Be careful of your habits, for your habits become your character.
Be careful of your character, for your character becomes your destiny.
The biggest lie about discipline is that it is a personality trait. It isn’t. It’s a habit. When you repeat an action enough people will attribute it to your personality. If someone works hard every day, they’ll say she is a hard worker. Our habits are eventually assigned to us as a personality trait, but we weren’t born with them. We developed them through repetition. Habits and routines are what determine what we will achieve in life, that is why they are essential to our success and happiness. The excellent news is that we can choose to form whatever habits we want by shaping our environment to support them. Continue reading “DISCIPLINE IS A HABIT, NOT A PERSONALITY TRAIT”
“Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.” Aristotle
All day long we transition from one activity to another. We wake up. We follow a morning routine. We commute to work. We arrive at work. We begin working on a project. We stop working to attend a meeting. You get the idea.
We transition dozens of times each day, but how often do we pause between activities to mentally prepare ourselves for the next task. Learning to master these transitions is a powerful strategy for high performance. Continue reading “BRING THE JOY!”