Staying inspired can be difficult work. No matter what you are striving towards or continuing to improve upon; staying inspired takes effort. I sometimes look for things to be inspired by and sometimes inspiration find me. Things like nature, music, social media posts, my husband, friends, and sometimes even strangers inspire me. When we are grounded and connected to something bigger than ourselves, we can find that inspiration everywhere we go. All we need to do is to stay open to the possibilities.
For the past eight weeks, I've been doing a Sculpted Vegan challenge with a co-worker. I've enjoyed most aspects of this challenge with the exception of the food (too much processed vegan stuff that I've cut way back on). There were a few days that I skipped the workout in exchange for rest or a yoga practice. I found encouragement and motivation by observing certain parts of my physique change. Staying inspired to complete this 8-week challenge wasn't as difficult as past challenges I've participated in. After several years of working out consistently, I have the inner fire, determination, commitment, and drive to stick with things. Whereas in the past, the first sign of defeat, I'd immediately give up and throw in the towel. So what is it? What keeps people motivated and inspired to stick with goals, even when things become difficult?
When we make goals or resolutions (yes, there's that dirty word that pops up right before the New Year) we have an end-game in mind. We start at point A and finish at point B. Sounds easy enough, right? But life happens . . . obstacles, illnesses, injuries, and other set-backs occur. We cannot let those things allow us to lose focus or give up. We are striving for progress, not perfection. My self-limiting beliefs and (former) type-A personality did not allow for screw-ups, which is why I'd give up so easily. I thought, "Well, I messed up on my food or skipped a workout, I'm giving up." I had an "all or nothing" attitude. So silly, isn't it? Changing my thinking has allowed me to be more flexible in my living and expectations of myself. It's not that I have low expectations of myself; I just allow myself to be human and know that I am always doing my best in whatever situation I am in. I don't beat myself up for skipping a workout or eating something I know is going to cause me inflammation later. I listen to my intuition and my body. For example, this morning when getting Bettie's harness and leash on I strained my glutes . . . instead of trying to power through my workout and possibly cause more injury to my body, I'm resting. I took Bettie for a shorter than normal walk and I canceled my private yoga client session. I'm taking care of me and listening to my body. I'm getting other things accomplished today and I am allowing myself to go with the flow.
Mindset plays a huge role in staying inspired. When you let go of expectations and just keep showing up to do the work, shifts will begin to happen. Losing my "all or nothing" attitude has definitely made a huge difference on my journey. My expectations are realistic and allow for life to happen. When I set goals for myself, whether they are personal or professional, I make a plan, but I don't set it in stone, I allow for things to flow. When we hold ourselves to too high a standard or expectations, we set ourselves up for disappointment. Perhaps, you also engage in negative self-talk . . . this was another huge reason why I'd give up so easily. I listened to that negative self-talk and I believed it!!! We also judge; we judge ourselves and compare ourselves to others' results. Remember, "Comparison is the thief of joy." This is why I don't engage with comparing or judging. It's a complete waste of time and energy.
Anytime you need inspiration . . . stop for a moment. Get grounded, place your feet on the ground, sit up nice and tall, place your hands on your belly, breathe into your belly, look towards the sky, listen to the birds, and wait. Something inspiring is waiting to be discovered by you. Make a special folder in your phone with inspiring words, pictures, download motivating songs, and create rituals to get inspired. To be inspired means to be in spirit. You are whole. You are divine. You have all the answers and motivation inside of you, you just need to find something to spark it.
Your Motivation Coach