Why You Need Inspiration Not Motivation
Have you ever woken up with a hangover and thought ‘I’ll never drink again’. Then that evening when your headache has passed you crack open a bottle of wine.
I always think of January as a bit of a ‘hangover’ month. After the rush of parties, presents and food, January is about headaches, trousers that don’t fit and empty bank accounts.
Often people make wild declarations, “I’ll stop drinking,” or “I’ll get fit,” or “I’ll lose weight.” These knee-jerk reactions however are often doomed to fail; they come from a place of desperation rather than inspiration.
If you want to make meaningful changes to your life then you’ll need a bit more than a new year’s resolution to make a shift. The tight trousers might provide the motivation to lose weight, however motivation in its own right won’t stand up. Indeed motivation is very much over-rated.
So if motivation isn’t the answer, what is? Quite simply if you want to lose weight, or get fit, or stop smoking then find something that INSPIRES you and not something that motivates you.
Motivation Won’t Work on its Own
There is a big difference between motivation and inspiration. Motivation is fuelled by fear of failure. It is usually driven by the desire to avoid something.
Inspiration, on the other hand is a pull towards something. You might be motivated to get fit because you’re fed up of feeling puffed out. However, your trips to the gym will soon become laborious if the only thing sustaining you is motivation.
Try Inspiration Instead
There is a quote by Thomas Leonard (one of the pioneers of coaching), he said, “When people are inspired they don’t need motivation.” It’s so true. If you can find something that inspires you then you’ll find yourself achieving other goals by default.
When you find something that is compelling, you will want to achieve it; you will look forward to doing it. It won’t become a drag and most importantly you’ll enjoy it.
Rather than thinking, “I want to get fit,” consider activities that inspire you; ones where fitness would be a by-product. For example are you inspired by dancing? Are you inspired to take up tennis?
Inspiration as a Path to Fulfilment
So this new year, think long and hard about your resolutions. Rather than rush head-long into a load of things that you feel you ‘ought’ to do, pause and take stock. Before committing to any resolution ask yourself whether it inspires you or not.
Once you find those activities that truly inspire you, that’s when you’ll find real fulfilment.