Motivation: a reason or reasons for acting or behaving in a particular way
We all do it – set ourselves targets which we think are achievable but never get passed the “writing on the to-do list” stage. Given that 80% of people have discarded their New Year’s resolutions by February, how can you push past that and actually achieve what you want?
Have a goal and make it specific
Having a specific, exciting goal will make sure you stay on target. Give the goal a deadline and it will make you stay focussed, even when you’re having a bad day.
Using the SMART principle (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound) when it comes to setting goals and targets will also help to make sure you’re not trying to aim too high. If you feel the goal is too big, split it down into more manageable chunks.
Write it down
Once you’ve come up with your goal, write it down so you can refer back to it. It also gives you chance to think. If you want to lose weight, why is that – confidence, health reasons, or a particular event such as a wedding?
Make sure you put this somewhere where you can see it – it will refresh your memory and you can think about how your progress is going.
Make a plan
You can see where you want to be, but how will you get there? Can you do it alone or do you need help from an outside source (health professional, friends and family or a fitness professional).
A good idea is to think of all the barriers that you think you might face and how you can overcome them.
Making a note of your progress along the way can also keep you motivated. Knowing how far you have to go is one thing, but knowing how far you’ve come can give you a boost when you need one the most.
Find a buddy
Working out with a friend or making an appointment with a Personal Trainer can encourage you not to cancel your session. Letting someone down (or losing money!) can stop you quitting your plans and hitting the sofa.
Get a great playlist
Music has been proven to keep people motivated during a tough workout, so choose songs which will inspire you during the tough times – it doesn’t always have to be the Rocky soundtrack! Keep your playlist updated to keep your motivation high.
Visualisation can be a great mental strategy. If you’re planning a Gym workout after work, spend 5 minutes imagining how great you’ll feel after the workout and how much closer to your ultimate goal you can be.
Motivation is key when it comes to sticking to plan and using these strategies can help you stay on track, but sometimes only you can motivate yourself.