How I Stayed Motivated When I Wanted to Quit

“Are we there yet?” Except it wasn’t my kids saying it, it was me thinking it, which believe it or not, is just as exhausting to hear! Why? Because the real question I was asking, “Am I there yet? Am I done?” I was exhausted responding to my mental questioning and trying to keep myself motivated.

I just didn’t have it in me yesterday.

I love my walks, truly, especially this time of year but yesterday for some reason, I just couldn’t fully get into it and well, I just wanted to take a short cut and go home. I was getting bored. I was getting antsy. I was slowing down. Even my favorite podcast wasn’t motivating me.

I just wanted to stop pushing myself to achieve my goal of an hour towards a healthier me. But did I really? No, of course I didn’t. But oh I was close. The stairs to home were right there. Calling me, “Come on Sheila, come home. It’s all good.” It would have been easy to just go left, climb the stairs, and call it a day. But then I would have been disappointed in myself and that wouldn’t have been easy.

Just then, a woman ran past me on the track, from the other direction. And it hit me, what if, what if instead of “giving up early” or “short cutting” what if I just changed direction? What if all I need to keep going was a new view, a new perspective? What if I turned around and simply started walking the other direction, following the woman?

So I did.

And wow. Same place. Same track. Same me. New view.


Expansive view.

Peaceful view.

I found myself re-motivated to keep going. And going. And going. I finished my hour easily. And with so much satisfaction and pride.

I didn’t short cut my goal (or myself); I achieved it – all I had to do was change direction.

This realization was powerful, and simple, and well, familiar. So often on the way to achieving goals, I get stuck. When I do, it is hard to remember to change it up, to try something new, to find a new perspective. But when I do, voila! My mind opens and I become unstuck and I reach a new level of motivation or problem solving.

If you are trying to yell less…
and finding yourself wanting to give up, don’t give up on the goal, just change direction. Perhaps choose a new trigger to work on. Or choose a new mantra to help you in tough moments. Or start giving yourself grace if you haven’t yet, remembering you are human and the goal isn’t perfection. Just try something new.

If you are trying to improve your connection with your teens…
and want to give up and accept it will always be this way, don’t give up on the goal of a close connection, just change direction. Perhaps try a new time of day to connect. Or a new means of communication, perhaps a hand written note? Perhaps over Dunkin’ coffee instead of in the house? Or simply cook a favorite meal that says, “I love you” and leave it at that.

If you are trying to achieve a life goal…
and you want to give up, don’t give up on the goal, just change direction. And this is where I am struggling so these next words should be interesting and fun to read. Perhaps I should try a new perspective. Perhaps I am looking at the challenges I am facing in the wrong light. Perhaps I need to add some new tools to my motivation and resilience mindset. Perhaps I need to simply slow down and accept the speed of the process, much like I appreciated the view around me as I walked the new direction. Hmmmm….

Whatever meaningful goal you are going after, itsy-bitsy, small, big, gargantuan, if you feel like giving up on it, don’t.

Simply change direction, change your mindset.

Same goal, new approach.

It won’t be easy, but then again, not going after a goal that matters to you won’t be easy either.

(And yes, there are times when our heart knows that it is indeed time to stop or even to take a pause, a break. That isn’t giving up. That is honoring your instinct and yourself. Your heart will know which direction to go. Trust it. And yes, Sheila, read your own words and take them to heart, will you?!)

Sending warmth and strength to you today and always,
Warmth because it is Monday and who doesn’t need some warmth at the beginning of a week?
Strength because going after goals is hard, hard work. Fulfilling work, but hard work. It takes determination, courage, often times composure, and strength.

You are resilient. More resilient than you realize.

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