I want you to take a moment and think back to the last time you felt that de-motivated, flat-lined feeling instead of energized, pumped up, and passionate about your day, and your workout.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you never had to feel that way again?

It’s almost like trying to stop a car from rolling downhill. Once that negative, defeated momentum begins, it can be hard to stop. Sometimes it’s easier to just let it happen.

Today I want to talk about not only putting the breaks on this negative cycle, but also how to start moving forward. There’s a reason I have been to the gym for 10 years in a row, week after week, day after day, without missing out on the benefits of my program.

What I’ll tell you is that it’s not because of time management, or because I haven’t had injuries. The answer might just be so obvious, you’ve been passing over it your whole life because you couldn’t believe it’s that simple!

It’s the type of explanation that causes that “ahah!” moment where everything seems to instantly make sense.

Just remember, 3 + 2 = 5, and so does 4+1.

There are multiple ways to achieve a goal, and sometimes we don’t consider all of our options. The way I am about to tell you is both proven to be successful, and given me a completely different relationship to exercise.

What do you think would happen if you were not only motivated enough to go to the gym, but you also had enough motivation to inspire others to go. Let’s get down to business on this motivational technique.

First, a fable:
A man was the proud owner of a horse. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing? One day, the horse escapes from the staple. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing? The man finds the horse in an open pasture, and lures the horse back to him. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing? The man rides the horse back towards his staple, but on the way, the horse bucks him off, breaking his leg. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing? While the man is being treated for his broken leg, the King is touring the country side, recruiting men for his army. Since his leg is broken, the King does not recruit him. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing?

I have to go to the gym today. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing?

Naturally we know deep down that the gym is good for us, but that doesn’t stop us from disliking the idea of it at times.

In the end, it all comes down to what your answer is to that question: is this a good thing, or a bad thing?

What does it take for you to see the gym as a hassle? Is it after a long day at work? Is it when you’re dreading a heavy lift? Is it when it’s sunny outside, or when your friends suggest something else to do and want you to tag a long?

Recognize these situations, and understand they will continue to come up. However, your relationship to these situations can change. The way you view them can change.

There are very few times when the gym is ever truly a bad thing. Are you just using it as a scape goat, or an excuse? The value is understanding WHY you’re avoiding the gym, and battling that reasoning. You have to see it for what it is.

It is counter-productive.

Perhaps you feel your workouts need a shot-in-the-arm, and you’re not as excited to get into the gym and tackle your exercises. Or, is it that you generally feel motivated to go to the gym with others, but when you’re on your own, it can shake your determination to go.

The truth is that from time to time, we all feel a little bit wavering in our dedication to go exercise. Periodically we all fall into these slumps where we fall into a proverbial funk. So, how do we get out of it?

The answer is simple: Victory is first established in the mind. I want you to think back to a time when you didn’t like how your life was going. Things seemed hopeless, and maybe you felt like curling up in a ball and wishing all of your problems would disappear. Yet, twenty minutes later, you were willing to take on the world again and started taking steps towards the solutions. When we don’t feel like going to the gym, we need to reconnect with why we wanted to go in the first place. The mind can only hold one idea at once. If the idea is that we don’t want to go, then that’s how we will feel, and likely act. If the idea is we want to go, the same principle applies. How do we start recognizing why we want to go?

Here are three easy steps to getting back to your motivation:

Get positive. Turn on some music that feels good, and energizes you. Think back to a time when you had a successful workout and how it felt to feel like you accomplished something.

Give yourself a reward. Make a deal with yourself. If you get into the gym, despite your own resistance, you will reward yourself with something you’ve wanted. This reinforces putting your happiness first.

Dedicate it to something greater than yourself. When our problems are on our mind, and we are consumed by our own lives, it’s easy to make excuses. When we decide that other people will benefit from our positive habits and actions, we stop letting the small things in life weigh us down. You can’t be selfish when you live for other people, and in the end, we realize the only person standing in our way is ourselves.

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