Self Motivation for Middle Aged Men

In the page on Motivation we looked at what motivation is.
In this page we'll look at self motivation...

The reason you've looked at this section is because you probably need a bit of help Sticking with a diet, or exercising, you may be trying to quit smoking.

Maybe you don't know why, but for some reason you just cant stick at it.

Perhaps you start with all the best intentions, but somehow it all becomes too much, or temptation 'gets' you.

Maybe its not really what you want.

Or maybe you dont want it enough?

It may seem a stupid question. But think for a minute...

What are you seeking motivation for?
Often you lack self motivation because you don't really have a concrete objective...

  • Do you really want to lose weight?
  • Or maybe you know you need to exercise, but hate it?
  • Perhaps you know you should quit smoking but can't seem to keep it up?.

Often we decide we SHOULD do something but we don't really WANT to.

In the page on Motivation we saw that there are two types of motivation, Away (pain) and Toward (pleasure)

People are motivated more easily by pleasure, than by pain.

That's why so many people fail when they try to Quit smoking,
(nicotine stimulates the pleasure centers of the brain)
or Lose weight,
(same scenario with sugars etc)
Or they start Exercising, but find it boring or too hard.
(It takes time before the endorphins kick in)

Going against all these things is painful to some extent, so you need to find a way of convincing yourself its worth the pain...

How?

A good self motivation technique, is to write down your objective or goal, in a way that identifies it, and proves to you that its worth doing.

This may seem a bit flaky but stick with me...

First, you have to establish Exactly what it is your setting out to do.

Say for example you want to lose weight.

Its no good just saying to yourself "I'm going to lose weight."

How much weight?

If you lose a pound, then you've lost weight.

you need to decide EXACTLY what it is you want to achieve.

Writing it down in your OWN hand, helps with establishing EXACTLY what it is you are trying to achieve.

So if you need to lose twenty pounds.
Write...
"Lose twenty pounds."

You've now got a Concrete and Measurable objective.

Ok, so you know what you WANT to do.
The next question is WHY do you want to do it?

If taking a course of action is going to produce Real benefits for you, then you'll find it easier, or even pleasurable to do it.

You need to establish what the benefits to you are, in what you're setting out to achieve.

Remember, we're motivated either Toward a result,
(Usually something we want)
or Away from a result.
(Usually something we don't want)


Carrot or Stick

Which do you prefer?

I'll bet the farm it's the Carrot.

Take your piece of paper where you wrote "Loose twenty pounds"
Now draw a line down the middle



In the left column write down.
"By losing twenty pounds I will..."

Then list all the benefits of losing twenty pounds, such as Looking better, Feeling healthier etc.
Also include the negative things, like "avoid Heart disease." "Diabetes." etc.


In the other column write down
"By not loosing twenty pounds I will..."

Then list the consequences of not loosing twenty pounds
Things like "I'll probably keep on getting fatter."
"I could develop Heart disease" etc.

If you need any help with these negatives, look at the page on Health Issues and you will find a whole raft of things to put in your negative column.

Include in your columns the effects your actions will have on your loved ones like;
"My wife will find me more attractive" Or "my kids will be ashamed of me."

Work at it for a while, and you will build up a convincing case for losing twenty pounds.

You'll also be left with a powerful self motivation tool.
One you can carry with you, and take out and look at during your day, especially when your resolve needs a little stiffening.

A potent way to reinforce this is to read the left hand column to yourself aloud if you can, but move your lips anyway if you cant.
This sends a powerful message to your subconscious mind, reinforcing your reasons for your actions, which will give you the self motivation to work towards your objective.

"Now this is where I might be in danger of sounding like a corny self-help book."

You know, the ones that tell you to 'visualize your goal' and it will appear...

"Well it wont."

YOU will have to do the work to get to your objective...

But, what picturing in your mind the result your after will do, is help you through the 'bad' times.

The times when you're in danger of giving up, or giving in to temptation. It will keep you focused and on track.

I'm sure we've all read in magazines about people who have been lost in the desert or in a life raft at sea, where they could have given up and died,
but the thought of loved ones, or maybe plain bloody vengeance kept them going.

All they could picture was the end result. 'Little Timmy's face'
Or strangling the bejaysus out of the person who put them there.

This picturing of things in your mind is used by psychologists and hypnotists, and, if you can master it, the benefits are enormous.

There's also a little self motivation 'mind trick' That you may find useful...

Anchoring

To leave Self Motivation and return to Motivation

Return to Middle Aged Men