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Why Can’t I get Motivated? Life Motivation Tips

We took a family vacation from June 20th to June 23rd, just a quick 3-day trip to Washington D.C., to drop my oldest off at a week-long summer program. It was amazing, we loved it, but I came back totally unmotivated to get back to work blogging, working out and managing our household.

I’m not talking slightly unmotivated but TOTALLY unmotivated! Like sleep until 9 am, watch TV and hide out from the heat all day unmotivated.

I have asked myself several times in the last two weeks, “Why can’t I get motivated?” The first few days I know part of my lack of motivation was jet lag. However, you can only use that excuse for so long before you’re just being lazy. I know another reason is the heat, with temperatures over 110 degrees in Arizona it is hard to want to move, especially outside in the sun.

While trying to motivate myself to get back into blogging, working out, meal planning, and keeping up with household chores, these are some things I have done to help motivate myself- my “Life Motivation Tips”.

Focus on TODAY

Part-eagle-part-hippo

We’re all part eagle & part hippo.

When you are lacking motivation, remember that you only have to motivate yourself TODAY. Don’t worry about tomorrow until it is tomorrow. Think about what one thing you need to do today. What is the hardest, most difficult thing that you need to make sure gets done TODAY to move you forward toward your goals?

Let’s take fitness, for example. I was working out 4-5 times a week before vacation. After vacation, I did maybe one or two workouts… over two weeks. When I think about squeezing in 4 or 5 workouts between now and Saturday, what little motivation I might have had disappears. It feels unobtainable and overwhelming. Focusing on just a 20-minute workout TODAY is more manageable.

While focusing on today, it is important to remember that everyone has 24 hours in their day. Mothers, co-workers, students, CEO s, the President of the United States, EVERYONE has the exact same 24 hours in each day to make happen what needs to happen. It’s how we spend those 24 hours that determines our success in life.

Time is the only resource we have in our life that does not re-generate. You can’t get back a wasted day. I can’t get back the last two weeks that I got absolutely nothing done. You can only try to not waste today.

So what are YOU going to do TODAY to move towards your goals?

Get Started!

When you are sitting on the couch watching TV and wondering if you should get up and workout or mow the law or write that paper for your class or take your kids to the park, you are NOT going to find motivation just sitting there. Turn OFF the TV and move. It is easier to start a project or get something off your to do list when you are moving.

Physically moving gets your blood pumping and boosts your mood. Happy, energized people get more done and find motivation. When I’m up cleaning it is easier to keep cleaning. It is hard to get off the couch and start cleaning because you want to stay sitting.

This was actually related to something I learned from reading Failing Forward by John Maxwell back in January. You can check out my quick 2 minute YouTube video on Motivation from mid-January 2019.

Basically John Maxwell says that that thought of motivation is a trick. You won’t find motivation sitting there. You have to get started and then motivation will come and keep you going. If you are waiting to be motivated BEFORE you get started than you will never get started.

From my experience this is totally true. No matter how much I may want to lose 20 pounds, that desire alone isn’t going to get me out of a comfortable bed at 5 am. When the alarm goes off and I get out of bed, put on my workout clothes and head out to the living room and press play on my workout video, it gets done and I feel GREAT!

Motivation is an action! Action builds momentum and motivation to keep you going!

Find a Mantra

This may be my meditation, yoga side coming out just a bit. When I lack motivation what I am telling myself is “You don’t really need to do that right now” or “There’s always tomorrow. Today let’s just relax.” or “Eh, you’re comfortable right now and watching your favorite show with your hubby, everything else can wait.”

In order to get out of that unmotivated self-talk, you need to replace those thoughts with thoughts that motivate you and make you say “Hell yes! I got this!” Something that gets you pumped and ready to get moving! Mantras are just short, positive phrases you repeat over and over to yourself.

100%shotsSome examples of mantras include:

“I am the master of my destiny.”

“I value my time.”

“I can accept failure but I can’t accept not trying.”

“I am a powerful force for good for myself and others.”

“My dreams are my priority.”

What mantra will get you motivated to create the life you want? What will push you forward and get you off the couch?

Remember When You Kicked Ass!

Was there ever a time that you kicked ass and got more stuff done than you thought possible? I think back to when my kids were little. I was working full time (40+ hours per week) as a supervisor, taking online classes to get my bachelor’s degree, running our house (cleaning, cooking, laundry, etc) and taking care of two kids under the age of 6.

I kicked ass and got more done in a day back then than I feel like I get done in a week right now. It was exhausting and amazing all at the same time. While I would never, ever want to be that busy again, I was motivated and nothing stopped me. I felt like super mom!.

If I rocked my life that well before, I can do it again. I just have to remember that I am awesome. That it feels great to work hard and get things done. Let your past experiences when you had motivation help propel you through times when you don’t feel the motivation now.

You’ve got this!

Life Motivation Tipsgettingstarted

So when you are feeling unmotivated and like you just don’t have the drive, remember that you are amazing. You can and will find the drive to reach your dreams, but you’re not going to find it sitting on the couch! Here’s the tips again:

  • Focus on the one thing you need to do today to get closer to your goals.
  • You only have 24 hours in each day- don’t waste it!
  • TURN OFF THE TV and MOVE! Motivation is an action.
  • You won’t find motivation sitting there waiting for it. You have to start and then it will find you & keep you going.
  • Create a mantra that gets you pumped and ready to go.
  • Remind yourself of a time you were motivated and how you felt before, during and after. Let that memory be your motivation now.

When you’re feeling unmotivated, that’s OK. You don’t have to be motivated to rock your life! You just have to get started and do it!

Check out motivational quotes too, like the ones scattered throughout this article. Quotes can help you get moving when you are unmotivated.

Did you have any good motivational tips that I missed? Drop a comment below and let me know!

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16 Comments

    • You’re welcome! We all need our *ss kicked every once in awhile! Get going & find your motivation!

  1. Such great advice but the best part is Focus on Today!
    Omg, that is so inspiring. I am always in the past or the future and have to actively work on today. I very much needed that reminder today.
    The other thing that really hit me was the get started. I am great if I get on my tasks first thing in the morning. However, if I get side tracked, I can lose momentum for the entire day. So I will write in whatever has to be done for first thing in the day so that at least that will get done. For the rest, I will write JUST START. So simple!
    Awesome post!

    • I’m so glad to hear that I wasn’t the only one who need a reminder on motivation! So glad to hear that you found it useful. Get going and you’ll find your motivation!
      Have a great day!

  2. I really liked the idea of creating a mantra. So quickly a thought will pop up such as, “i can do it later” and I think having a mantra to counter that though is definitely a step in the right direction for getting things done. Then we must act!

    I noticed that once we do begin the process of whatever it is we need to do, the we do act is when the energy starts to flow to get it down.

    • Absolutely! Getting started is more than half the battle! Once we’re in motion it is easier to stay in motion. That’s actually, a physics concept. Bodies in motion want to stay in motion and bodies standing still want to remain still. It’s the process of moving from standing still to being in motion that requires the most effort.
      I have recently started a “2 Minute Rule” for myself. If I see something that needs to be done and it can be done in less than 2 minutes I just do it, without thinking, without rationalizing that I will add it to my to do list to work on later. No- if I am walking past the kitchen and see an empty cup on the table I just put it in the dishwasher. Same thing with goals and projects- if I know it’s a quick task and will only take a minute or two I just do it. One less thing to try to motivate myself on later.

  3. What a nice post you wrote! I really enjoyed reading it. You bring up so many good tips here, my motivational tip is 5 second rule from a famous book, count down 5-4-3-2-1 Go, it’s great and change my life, you can read it if you’d like to.

    • So the book is titled “The Five Second Rule”? Is that the one by Mel Robbins? I haven’t read it but will definitely put on my reading list! Thank you!

  4. I am so glad that I found this article. I have been procastinating a lot recently. And whenever a day has passed, I kind of blamed myself for allowing myself do nothing much the previous day. And from here, I start to worry about the future. It is a vicious cycle which I have to break. I can relate to the part of sitting down and watching tv and not doing anything else. I am really guilty of this! I will definitely follow the recommendations, especially the advice that the way to motivate myself is to get up and start doing something.

    • I am glad I was able to help! We all get periods of time where we aren’t very motivated. Sometimes we just need a couple of days for a break, everyone needs down time so we don’t run ourselves ragged. It’s when we get stuck in that unmotivated phase that we need to worry! Good luck! Get moving & you’ll find motivation!

  5. I think we have all had times when we lack motivation. As you say if you focus on one thing today and don’t stop until it’s done you have motivated yourself into achieving something. Just do that each day and don’t think about tomorrow or the day after and you will get more done.
    A lot of people can never get motivated and are just drifting through life. Make sure this is not you, I am speaking to people in general not you Amber:)
    Thanks for the motivation,
    Frank

    • Thank you! Just drifting through life unmotivated… I was in that head space temporarily after a personal crisis. I was the most miserable in my life during that time. Then one day I got tired of being there, picked myself up, and got back to finding things that made me move forward with my life!

  6. Hi, this is such a great post, I am always unmotivated after a holiday, I think I relax too much and it’s hard to get going again. I’m usually a very motivated person.
    You don’t have to be motivated to get started – you just need to get started to get motivated.

    • I love how you said that “You don’t have to be motivated to get started- you just need to get started to get motivated.” Beautifully put!

  7. I can relate. I’m here too in the Phoenix, Arizona eat. I think it will hit 111 today. Nice to be inside with the air conditioner running. When it get in that not wanting to do anything mood, I just pick one easy job to do, often this gets the engine going to do something else, and then more things come… Loved your post.

    • Thank you! Start with one easy thing to get moving is a great tip! One thing can turn into two and then three… Getting started is often the best trick!

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