Motivation: What’s Yours? What works?
A comment about motivation being “all that matters” really got me going this week. It didn’t motivate me. It irritated me. Worse, it was in the first line of a self-help book. I suspect there are many self-help books out there that intimidate or try to shame people into fulfilling their dreams.
I wrote a self-help book and I want to dispel a couple of ideas that are potentially dangerous. My book is called Do the Thing! It’s filled with tricks and tips to manage time and pain, cut stress and boost energy. Toward the end of the book, I include a surprise which I will boil down to the rich creamy point here: motivation is not everything. Work is not everything. To succeed, you need much more than motivation and someone hanging over your shoulder shouting at you to work harder. You need to work smarter, acquire skills, build alliances and take time off to recharge.
You see the symptoms of the rush to greatness everywhere. People are pushing so hard and trying to do too much. I see the problem on Facebook a lot. Idealized versions of our lives are on display there.
Meanwhile, a startling number of people think they’re the only ones who are working hard. They don’t want to support loafers. They don’t want their tax money going to undeserving people. I wish more people who got social assistance actually could goof off. Instead, their working as many hours at Walmart as they can. The “sharing economy” is really the “gig economy” and it seems everyone has to have a side hustle to get by.
I was reminded of this listening to one of my podcast recommendations this week. The 5 A.M. Miracle mastermind Jeff Sanders has a health scare. He’s a motivated, active and healthy guy who got a wake up call recently. A trip to the hospital in an ambulance reminded him that all work and no play makes Jack a dead boy. Listen to Mr. Sanders’ podcast here.
The other podcast recommendation I have for you this week comes from The Joe Rogan Experience. Joe interviewed journalist and documentarian Sebastian Junger. He talks about the dangers of affluence and the importance of movement and being social. (That’s where I got some of the ideas for this episode.) Go to the source at this link.
Key Question: What’s your motivation?
Is you dream to find fulfilling work? To control your time? To travel? To make enough money at what you love that you’ll still have time with your family and friends? (Don’t tell me you want to win the lottery. We all want that but, aside from buying a ticket, there’s nothing you can do to make that happen.)
Fear, anger and spite can get you going, but what will keep you motivated for the long-term? What inspires aspiration in you? What legacy do you want to leave? Are you working for security in retirement, putting off all fun until you’re old?
I’ll tell you what motivates me. It used to be fear of failure. Once you fail enough, that’s not as scary as you might think. In fact, if I’m not careful, I could fall into resignation on that score. No, what motivates me now is that I don’t want to fear bills. I don’t want to fear for my health. I want to get paid for what I’m good at and do what I enjoy. I’m tired of being fearful. What motivates me as an entrepreneur and as an artist isn’t bravery. It’s becoming successful enough that I can do things for my family and not live in fear of the next VISA bill.
I’m working on it. Despite that major tax bill I’ve complained about on the podcast, (Hear about that here,) I’m taking some time off from a couple of my side gigs so I can focus on writing and publishing books. That’s my long-term plan so I can retire from manual labor, anyway. That’s why I need to concentrate my energy on it.
I hope this topic has stimulated your thinking. What motivates you? Are you doing what you need to be doing? Are you getting enough sleep and recharging with rest and information?
Let me know what motivates you in the comments at AllThatChazz.com.
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~ Robert Chazz Chute is a manual therapist whose focus is stress management and rehabilitation from injury. His clinic link is MassageTherapyScience.com.
Best known for This Plague of Days, he is a writer of SFF, horror, crime thrillers and some non-fiction. His blog about writing is ChazzWrites.com and his author site for readers (with links to all his books) is AllThatChazz.com.