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One Life Changing Perspective: Action Precedes Motivation

Action precedes motivation
The view on my walk every Friday before my sunrise 'chicken'... Not too shabby!
I am a slow learner about some of life’s simplest truths. AFTER 51 years OF LIVING, it has taken me until this crazy year to learn that my motivation is not driven by thinking more about my ‘stuff’…

When it comes to this AIP way of life that so many of us are navigating, finding motivation is a biggie. Inevitably, you start out with great intentions. And then it gets hard. Or, you hit a tricky bit.

Especially when life throws you the kind of curveball that 2020 has given us all.

Did you know that as human beans, we can actually have a bias toward procrastination?

Procrastination isn’t a unique character flaw or a mysterious curse on your ability to get stuff done. Rather, it is a way of coping with the challenging emotions and negative moods that come about as the result of some of the things you’ve popped on your ‘to do’ list – emotions like anxiety, insecurity, frustration, resentment, self-doubt and fear (and all the rest).

And this AIP caper we’re on isn’t easy.

That’s why I’m SUCH a fan of regularly setting myself wee goals. As a way to see something happen. So that I feel as though progress is being made.

Action precedes motivation
How, then? How do you find motivation?

And then, when you’ve found it, how do you go about staying motivated?
The bazillion dollar questions when it comes to anything worthwhile in life. And the Autoimmune Protocol is up there as one of the most worthwhile things in my life!

I reckon that most people looking for motivation on this health caper have a tendency to wait for something (or even someone) to come along and motivate them before they can get up and take action to motivate themselves. Which is completely understandable. When you suffer from a chronic illness, it can be bloody hard yakka. I know.

I really, really know.

Despite studying psychology at university and then later, becoming a coach – I’m embarrassed to share that I’m a decidedly late bloomer when it comes to understanding and applying tools for motivating myself. Some of that comes from being reasonably self-directed. But, if I’m honest, much of it is ostrich-like behaviour… I just put my head in the sand and tell myself I’ll deal with that thing later!

I’m a long-time user of the ‘motivation comes before action’ mentality. I have a tendency to analyse my shizzle to death. I would look for ways to get motivated to be healthy, to get up early, to meditate, or to just stop procrastinating and do all the AIP things. And, I’d find the motivation to do the AIP things for a little while (<– self-directed), but then – soon after, – my motivation would peter off and I’d get into my usual game of self-sabotage.

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The thing is, just like the butterflies you feel at the beginning of a new relationship, motivation has a lifespan. Exciting at first, that giddy feeling of potential and what might be doesn’t last. Well, it doesn’t for me.

Just as relationships need attention to thrive, so too does motivation. Small and considered actions to keep your motivation groove going is the way.

And while I kind of knew this, I didn’t really know that I knew it. It has taken me five decades of living and almost eight years on my AIP way of life, before finally realising that I was approaching this motivation thing backwards.

And this is where my favourite life-changing little saying for 2020 kicks in. These three little words are taped to my computer. They are what I say to myself when I feel the dreaded procrastination cloak landing…

Action precedes motivation

It really does.
And, remembering this can REALLY help your motivation.
The key is not to wait for motivation to arrive.

Rather, take a small, specific action to get the ball rolling. And once you have the ball rolling, it begins to gather momentum. You’ll find the motivation to continue comes far more naturally, and even – amazingly – on its own.

And it works. Doing something, even if it is the teensiest thing, that moves you closer to your goal, is better than standing still.

Try this. See if it helps you…

  1. Pick an aspect of your AIP way of life that you think requires some focus.
  2. Now, pick a small thing you can do to move you towards that.
  3. Do that thing.

And if you’d like some accountability – because writing your goals down is ANOTHER proven WAY to increase BOTH your MOTIVATION and your chances of achieving them – DROP ME LINE AT JOANNA@JOANNAFRANKHAM.COM and tell me what your thing is…
I dare you!

Action precedes motivation

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