INDIANAPOLIS — At the outset of the pandemic so many of us had big plans for things like learning a new skill, getting our finances in order or finally getting serious about our health.
Many people did, (congratulations) but as the pandemic drags on, restrictions remain in place and clarity on when things will return to normal stays unclear, more people are reporting that they’re losing the motivation they once had.
Wellness and healthy living expert Erica Ballard says there are two big steps you can use to help break get your motivation back!
“I think the first thing when it comes to motivation is understanding why you really want to do it. A lot of us look at outcomes we can measure. ‘I am this weight, I saved this much money, I did this many things,’ and really the reason you’re trying to do those things is you want something bigger than that,” she said.
“There’s a feeling that’s attached to it, there’s a lifestyle attached to it, there’s something unique to it, so understanding and tapping into that regularly is one of the best ways to keep motivated, otherwise you’re looking at a number that doesn’t mean anything.”
Ballard adds that we should look at “how we talk to ourselves” when we seek motivation. Adding that the typical attitude of “getting tough” with yourself is always effective.
“We’re just so used in this society to pushing and pushing and that’s not going to bring us joy, and our end goal no matter what you’re after is joy. So, working to get that feeling, working to move yourself in that way is one of the best ways to motivate yourself,” Ballard said.
Ballard adds that allowing yourself grace during moments of low motivation or struggle is key to rebounding. She highlights that people often trap themselves in the belief that what they do must be perfect, which can be a setup for failure.
“It’s that perfectionism trap. ‘When I got motivated, or when I got started, I did all the things right. And when I fall off, I have to do all the same things I was doing to be successful,’” Ballard said.
“But you got to that place by taking small steps, and because you have the wiring that says I can do this, if you can just start with one or two habits you were already doing, it will snowball and it will snowball faster.”