Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Mantras and Motivation

Motivation is a funny thing.

It comes, it goes, it finds its roots in the strangest of sources, it's killed by the oddest of things, it fights an endless fight against doubt and fear and laziness. Some days it feels like you have an unlimited stockpile of it (for when the zombies come), and some days it's all you can do to drag your butt out of bed and trudge a few blocks, muttering curses the whole way.

I'd love to have a bottle of it on my bedside table. Just a shot and I'm infused with the desire to sweat and move and ache and breathe. Two parts energy, one part optimism, one part commitment, sprinkled with a little self-love.

But, there is no such thing. I have to find other ways to restore my motivation when it's fading. And on those days when being fat sounds preferable to getting my butt off the couch, or making a healthy dinner seems impossible compared to going through a drive-thru, I have a few mantras I say to myself. They don't always work, but they do always give me a little perspective.

*"You can do anything for a day." (Or an hour, or twenty minutes...if I tell myself in the grand scheme of life, whatever it is I'm resisting is pretty insignificant, I can usually suck it up.)

*"There will always be cake." (Or pasta, or ice cream. Whatever delicious food is tempting me, I try to remember that there will always be more. I could have it tomorrow, or next week, it does not have to be now. The world will not run out of cake. And if it does, I will no longer live in this world.)

*"You'll feel so much better after." (This one is hard, if anyone else says this to me I turn into a raging bitch, "HOW DO YOU KNOW WHAT I'LL FEEL?!". But reminding myself that I get to be smug and ride high on adrenaline if I work out usually gets me on my feet.)

*"Nothing will change if you don't change." (If I don't consistently make better choices, I will still be at the place in my life and my body that I don't want to be. If I don't want to commit to a healthy decision, I think about how I used to feel, and that I'll feel that way again if I don't keep it up.)

*"Just do it." (Nike knows what's up. Though, they really should have ended their slogan with, "and stop bitching already".)

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