Getting excited about something is easy – at first.
Usually you get introduced to some new activity by chance and if it clicks for you, you are hooked!
You start talking to everyone about it, dream about it, and make all of your free time revolve around it.
But just as the excitement came suddenly, so does it go away – like the wind being taken out of your sails.
Whether its work, relationships, or other obligations that you had been putting off to the side, they start calling you back to them, and you start shifting your focus away from what excited you.
Sometimes it is just achieving success. You set out to reach a certain goal, and you made it. So there isn’t much more reason to be excited by an activity anymore since you already “won.”
In either case, the problem is motivation.
Without proper motivation, it is difficult to stay passionate about something, and having a burning desire is crucial for being successfully and more importantly fulfilled in life.
The best analogy I have read about motivation came from the famous Zig Ziglar. He described motivation as a glass of water with a hole at the bottom that was constantly leaking.
So when you first get into a new activity, the glass is filled (sometimes overflowing), so your are 100% motivated and all about it. But over time, that motivation begins to drip away. If left alone, you eventually will lose all motivation.
So how do you prevent yourself from being drained?
As Zig Ziglar put it, showers work well to clean yourself, but you need to do it daily to stay clean. It doesn’t matter how amazing the shower is, over time you will get dirty.
Motivation is the same. If you are not continually motivating yourself, your motivation will slowly drain out of you.
Which begs the question, how does one motivate themselves daily without having access to Tony Robbins on speed dial?
Motivation comes from many sources. It can come from reading books, watching films, listening to podcasts, speaking to people, doing activities, achieving goals, or just simply speaking a mantra to yourself.
It all depends on the individual, but regardless of what floats your boat, you need to create a motivational well – tapping into as many motivational sources as possible.
The more sources of motivation you have, the easier it is to “fill” your cup again. You should have a library of books, films, podcasts that you can easily access and have a schedule for going through them regularly. Much like people go to Church every Sunday to renew there faith, you want to refill our motivation regularly.
You should also put yourself in contact with people that inspire you regularly. If you hang out with people who are “demotivational,” that may cause your cup to leak faster. Associating yourself with the right crowd will keep you inspired and your cup filled.
When someone has a big goal that is achieved, it can be a dangerous point in their life. The bigger the goal, the more perilous.
Because more than likely this major goal was their life’s ambition, and if that is reached – what more purpose does their life have?
It sounds silly, but I have met more than my share of successful individuals that hit this crossroads and found themselves lost. The reason for their motivation to work hard was taken from them by achieving their goal, and now they have no ambition, motivation, or purpose.
This is why it is important to always plan ahead and be very ambitious. Giving yourself new goals keeps you focused and with purpose.
On a small scale, we see this with the BJJ Blue Belt ghosting phenomenon. Many people have smaller ambitions and don’t care about winning world titles or cashing in big checks – they just want to get to the next belt. For some, it can take years just to get a blue belt.
But once they get the blue belt, the idea of getting a purple belt, let alone a black belt, seems impossibly far. So getting the blue belt is just enough satisfaction to pat themselves on the back and disappear from training.
That is why I emphasize being ambitious. Think big and go for the gold. You should be thrilled you got a blue belt, but that is just a milestone on your quest. The quest isn’t getting a black belt though – it is for self-mastery. That is a goal that will never be fulfilled, and the journey for it is it’s own reward.
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