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Use This Cheat Sheet To Keep Yourself Motivated

Updated: May 13, 2023

You’ve been working diligently towards your goals, committing to the process, and putting in the work. Even better, you’re starting to feel some positive change. Your effort is starting to pay off! But suddenly, resistance kicks in. Rather than feeling encouraged by that growth, you suddenly feel the

opposite – “I can’t be bothered doing it anymore…” Wait, what has happened?


(If you haven’t created your plan for positive growth yet, be sure to read our last article on hacking your goals in 2021!)


The Key to Staying Motivated Isn’t What You Think…


If you’ve experienced what we described above, then congratulations - this means you are doing it right! Your brain has detected that you are doing something unusual and is trying to steer you back to your safe and familiar “comfort zone.”


Personal growth and meaningful change means stepping out of your comfort zone. This inevitably brings us discomfort, and if you aren’t willing to make room for that discomfort, you won’t do the things that really matter to you.


“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing-that’s why we recommend it daily “

-Zig Ziglar


Try This Exercise to Manage Your Motivation


Think about the path you’ve been on towards creating this positive change in your life, and in particular, think about the road ahead to continue creating this change.


Open a new document or pull out a piece of paper. At the top, write down all the difficult thoughts, feelings, memories, and urges that present themselves as you think about this journey. What reasons does your mind come up with for why you can’t or shouldn’t take action? What bad things does it tell you will happen if you do take action?


These reasons are your mind’s attempt at keeping you in the “comfort zone.” Your mind thinks it’s

doing you a favor by trying to protect you from failure. Long-term, however, what will happen if you

keep living the “comfort zone?” Conversely, what will happen if you do go for your dreams and pursue the goals that matter to you while making room for the discomfort in the service of those goals? Write your answers to these questions down underneath the section above.


Finally, remind yourself of your big WHY. Why bother to do this challenging stuff if it’s not that

important? If it is important, then connect with what makes it meaningful for you. Write your “why” out on the bottom of this sheet of paper.


The next time you feel that resistance to positive change, refer to this cheat sheet. See what feelings are showing up for you, check why those feelings might be there, and remind yourself why you set out on this journey to begin with.

Think about your brain like a cruise ship. The second it starts to go off course, the alarms will sound. There are no hard turns or immediate stops. In order to change course, you need to make small shifts that over time lead to a new direction.


The key is to make small committed changes each day that are driven by our values. The overall effect of these small daily actions can add up to a big, long-term change.

What is just one small thing you could do today to take you towards the life you want?



The exercise is taken from: Russ Harris 2017, www.actmindfully.com.au

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