When There’s No Motivation

The first morning light slips through the curtains. Its just gone 6.00 and last night while getting ready for bed, I said to myself, tomorrows run day.

But this early morning squinting sunlight is too much.

Knowing how good running is for fitness, mental health and productivity, should be enough for motivation.

But on this day, it just isn’t.

An excuse? Maybe. But the warm duvet and my battling mind have trapped me. Even though I know this run will help start the day. On this day, I just can’t.

Motivation can be a hard thing. Even when you know what can come out of working on a skill or goal and the personal satisfaction it can bring.

Recently a video came up on Instagram, telling a story about GB Olympic gold medallist diver, Chris Mears.

While in Australia, he became seriously ill and was hospitalised after his spleen had ruptured. After recovery, he said one of hardest the things getting back to diving, was the training.

For him cultivating the motivation for training that developed his skills further, was one of the biggest challenges he faced. But he’s fought it and kept chasing his dream.

His resilience to work on his training challenge, is what stayed with me long after.

Earlier this year, I read Angela Duckworth’s book, Grit. In many ways, grit is something I have thought about but lacked a fuller understanding of what it was exactly.

Grit, like resilience, where despite multiple setbacks or adversity, you keep working at your goal finishing what you start, refining your skills, rising from setbacks, pushing yourself to stretch and be transformed through the process.

Her studies and research have led to developing a working theory, tools and framework for measuring grit, that actually can be used to achieve any goal and in a larger context, a career.

In her equation effort counts twice:

talent x effort = skill     then     skill x effort = achievement

After a series of restless mini dreams, I finally got up.

Sleepily walking to the bathroom, my face refreshed in warm water I went downstairs to make a cup of coffee.

Waking up slowly with a warm cup of coffee in hands and the fresh morning air, a stretches and a weights workout – seemed like this may redeem my earlier running reluctance.

At times motivation can be a hard thing. But it’s not impossible to muster.

Some days are just more difficult than others. Over time when you focus on goals and skills you want to develop that stretching converts to muscle. Then when you really need that strength, its their to tap into.

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