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Thursday, March 07, 2013

I want to talk about motivation. Why is it so much easier to support other people than to support ourselves?

Let me start by going back to my competition blog (about comparing myself with someone else). I used to think that motivation of any kind is healthy; it gets you moving, gives you a target to set your mind on, gives you that drive that you need. So why is it so different when you use someone else as motivation...I think I know...because there's a line between inspiration and motivation. Ahhhh, yessss....a fine line, but it's there. By using the way someone else lives or looks for motivation am I really focusing on what I should be for ME? What I could do for MYSELF? My intensions are technically lose weight and look good. But am I going to have confidence in the end? Or am I constantly going to find reasons to say I'm not there yet...I'm not good enough...and I will always feel that someone else is better.

Let's look at what happens when a "motivated" girl (me) starts training for a 5k (or starts exercising at all): I started jogging/walking a 3.1 mile route the other day and I stopped so many times because I was scared of 1) having a heart attack and 2) the pain in my legs from lactic acid building up. Would a confident, inspired girl do these things? Maybe...but she wouldn't be so scared.

The point is, I don't believe in myself. And I'm so thankful for a friend who made me realize this on my other blog post. I love to help others be motivated and stay positive SO MUCH because I believe in how much it can help! But do I ever listen to my own thoughts? My own advice? I'm sure I wouldn't believe myself if I did!

How do you get over that devil sitting on your shoulder? Or that nagging voice that you always picture as your nasty relative who never has anything nice to say about you? What has worked for you in terms of building confidence?

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Wow! I'm so overwhelmed by these responses! I want you all to know that I took everything you all said to heart and went out for my 5k practice tonight...and just kept thinking about you all over and over again. Your words really made me focus on relaxing my mind and body and just getting into a comfortable place; I didn't feel the same horrible pressure to compete or perform! I just really enjoyed jogging and taking in the scenery. And I even finished ten minutes earlier than my last jog!

    I'm so grateful to be able to talk with friends here on SP who can relate and inspire. It's SO hard to convince yourself that you have what it takes without boosts of encouragement from others sometimes. And I will someday be able to encourage myself!

    Thank you all SO MUCH! By the way, I've read all of these about 5 times, haha.

    And Jen--I'm also long-winded! I can't help it; I have to fully explain myself!

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1902 days ago
  • JEM2929
    Also I'm really long winded, I know haha sorry~!
    1902 days ago
  • JEM2929
    I completely agree with everyone who is commenting here.

    It's so much easier to be positive when it comes to others. You can only beat yourself up so much, and what good does it do? If having someone to compare yourself to is bringing you down in any way then it's time for a change because that approach just might not be one that works for you. I think that comparing ourselves to our friends (sisters in my case) and other people doesn't help me accomplish anything. It just makes me feel even worse about how much I've "let myself go" and I know that for me that is not what helps me push harder. I do the best at achieving my goals when I remind myself every chance I get just how awesome I am, not because I'm reminding myself how fat and disgusting I am. That just makes me want to retreat and I set myself up for failure. Do you think that in a way comparing us to our peers might just be a set up for failure?

    Maybe it comes down to confidence? I don't know, I'm just babbling and throwing out ideas haha. I remember a time when I broke up with a guy I'd dated for several years a long time ago... I felt worthless and I needed to fix this. I made a choice that I was going to pretend that I was the most confident person there is. Why? Because then no one would question me or pity me or pay me the kind of attention I didn't want. It changed my life - everyone still thinks I'm this confident woman when really all I'm doing is faking it lol. Maybe it's not a good thing, I don't know. All I do know is that I'm a firm believer in faking it til you make it. And if your "weakness" is comparing yourself to other people maybe you can try faking that you don't care as much as you do about their progress until you actually start feeling that way. Does this even make sense? Probably not haha, I'm at work sneaking on here and my attention span is all over the place! Replace the nagging version of you that sits on your shoulder with the version of you that consistently tells you how great you are and how you are unstoppable. It might take a while but eventually you just may start believing it and your goals will start falling in your lap - we could hope anyways.

    Remember - you are just getting better with time. I think confidence comes with age too - it seems as we get older we just care less about spending time on the things that bring us down. And when you spend less time getting pulled down, confidence just may be part of the package. Focus on your greatness!
    1902 days ago
    It isn't easy and it isn't quick...!

    Reach inside of you and turn up the patience as patient, kind and loving toward yourself as you would be to a close friend or family member.

    Reflect on and list your positive attributes, qualities and accomplishments! Stumped? Speak with someone you are close to whose judgement you value and trust and ask them. Odds are, they will be able to come up with ideas for your list without a moment of hesitation! Keep this "brag list" in a conspicuous place and any time you can think of something to add to it, do so!

    Deflate the devil on the one shoulder and build up the angel on the other by recognizing your accomplishments and giving yourself due credit and healthy rewards for them!

    Kudos to being out there and putting one foot ahead of the other! Dispel your fears of heart attack, etc. by talking with your primary care provider and making sure that they have given you proper clearance for the exercise you are pursuing! Believe me, in this litigiously-minded world they are not going to say, "sure, go ahead and train for that 5k" if you pose any heart risks! If you've got the clearance, than GO FOR IT! Use your body as a guide. If you need to stop, stop: pain is not going to help you reach your goals. As your body builds its resilience you will go farther the next time before stopping. And farther yet!

    Know that you truly can DO THIS! :-)

    1902 days ago

    Comment edited on: 3/7/2013 3:36:43 PM
    You are SO right! I just had this conversation with my significant other last night about motivation and how I used my "old self" as motivation. I used to be disgusted with myself and hated who I had become. However, we need to learn to love ourselves no matter where we are because when the weight comes off what do we have left? For so many years I have focused on what I couldn't do or what is wrong with me when all along there is so much I can be proud of. Once you can shift your mind to the postive side you will be able to conquer anything. I know it isn't easy because I still struggle with it to this day, but know you will get there!!! :)
    1902 days ago
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