How come it is so hard to advocate for ourselves? Why is it that we are able to create the motivation for our friends, employers, sometimes even strangers, yet when it comes to motivating ourselves for our own endeavors it seems near impossible?
The answer is simple. We have been conditioned this way. The reward circuit in our brain became engaged at a very young age. When we took our first step we were encouraged. When we read our first word there were bells and whistles. Our self discipline was celebrated with gold stars, A+’s and paychecks.
We have not been conditioned to pat ourselves on the back for knocking out that small task that is part of a much larger project. We have not been conditioned to be excited about completing a few days of exercise knowing it may take months to see the fruits of our labor. We have not been conditioned to show up simply because we want to be consistent in achieving something over the long term, especially when there is no short term reward.
Just like the issue at hand there is no magical answer with a short term reward. Short term “discomfort” leads to long term “comfort”.
My recommendation is to smart small. Create a small habit, just for the sake of beginning to change your brain by honoring that commitment to yourself. If you want to exercise for 30 minutes everyday, start with 3 minutes 3x a week. And after you walk for 3 minutes? Celebrate – every. single. time.
Know that there is no shame in asking for help, asking for guidance, or support. Remember, we were conditioned by having teachers, bosses, or parents to help guide the way and affirm or give feedback on our actions.
I am a certified goals coach, and would love to be your cheerleader, coach, or confidant as you blaze your path to achieve those long term goals. Set up a discovery session today.