Jan 9, 2024

Three steps to sustain motivation

 It's been a week since the New Year began. How are the resolutions or habits (that you wanted to kickstart/drop) coming along?

Are you able to keep up the motivation or has it dipped after a few days of feeling good?

Many health and wellness apps, gym memberships, and online workshops capitalize on this sudden surge of motivation of the general public during this New Year timeframe. There is a steep increase in their topline revenue and subscriptions/renewals in the first week of January.

Except for a few, the majority tend to discontinue or are unable to sustain the motivation for long.

In my 20s, I used to try new resolutions, but invariably I'd end up quitting after a few days or weeks.

In my early 30s, I decided not to pursue the path of resolutions and instead, pursue clearly-defined habits. I realized I was able to continue on certain habits while I was struggling with others.

In my late 30s, I moved on to setting broad themes for the Year, that would help me identify and pursue related initiatives.

Now in my early 40s - better sense prevails. No resolutions, no habits, no themes.

Just go with the flow, accept life as it is, and gather knowledge and perspectives that will automatically trigger change on any given day. Do not wait for Jan 1st or any auspicious day to reset life.

Sustained motivation is a topic very dear to me. I had written a detailed article a few months back.

Sustaining motivation happens when we focus on these three aspects:

  1. When choosing a habit or a lifestyle change, before immediately jumping onto it, it is highly beneficial if we do some prior research. Gather enough knowledge, information, and perspectives. For eg, if the habit you want to start is "Quit junk food", research the ingredients, and get enough knowledge on the impact of processed foods, high sugar/sodium, transfats, etc on your health. Knowledge empowers you to start AND sustain change.
  2. Be crystal clear on why you want to take up this habit. What's your motivation? Dig deeper to understand the intrinsic need(s) it will fulfill. For the habit "Quit junk food", if the motivation is "I want to reduce acne and look good in selfies that I post on my social media feed", then you may not be able to sustain the habit beyond a few days. Rather, if the motivation is "I care about my body and I want to be fit and healthy without getting into the trap of lifestyle ailments", the reason is much more stronger and sustainable.
  3. Avoid getting too fixated on immediate results. After pursuing a habit for a few days, if you don't see any change, do you feel your motivation dips? Results take time. Results require patience. Results are also dependent on factors other than the habit we are pursuing. Our objective should be to focus completely on the habit AND enjoy doing it every day, irrespective of the time it takes for the results to show up.

For any habit, if you have worked on the first two aspects, then you are ready to kickstart it on any day/any week/any month.

Every brand new day is filled with possibilities for change.

Blog Archive

All contents copyrighted by Anuradha Sridharan, 2023. Don't copy without giving credits. Powered by Blogger.