How do we find motivation, and keep it going? As humans we always strive for more, to have our dream body and be healthy. There are many ways to work out nowadays as well as maintain a healthy body weight but unfortunately, most of these programs do not address one of the most important factors of human behaviour which is our psychology. We all know what we must do and the importance of exercise for both our mental health and our physical health. The problem is that we often fail to do it.
This does not mean that you should allow yourself to be unhealthy or not exercise but you should build what are called ‘internal motivating factors‘ for adopting a healthy lifestyle.
Internal motivating factors
Start a small ritual each day where you ask yourself a certain set of questions each morning, for just 10 – 20 seconds a day. These questions are adapted from the book titled ‘The Weight Escape’ by Joseph Ciarrochi, Ann Bailey and Russ Harris but your thinking doesn’t have to be at all related to weight loss:
- How will physical activity improve my health?
- How improved health help me develop friendships and love?
- How will improved health help me positively influence the world?
- How will improved health help me give and find joy?
Asking these questions and thinking about your values helps you to be more disciplined and overcome the internal debate about whether to exercise or not on a daily basis.
Another important tip is that in order to facilitate change and maintain it in the long term you need to ensure that you have addressed the following components:
- First, you need to ensure that you can make the change, this means that you are capable of exercising and believe that you can do it.
- Second, you need to ensure that you want the change, and this could go well with the core values and the questions that I mentioned above.
- Finally, an important component is that you must ensure that you like the change. Can you imagine doing something that you do not like in the long run? It is not very sustainable. you need to find a way of exercising that is right for you and that you enjoy doing. Be creative and find something that suits you and problem-solve so that you come to like it.
This article has been prepared for you by Dr. Panagiotis Karagiannis, HCPC Registered Counselling Psychologist and Clinical Director at SupportRoom, level 5 Higher Diploma in Hypno – CBT.
SupportRoom offers a range of options for online therapy. Anytime Fitness members can get up to 80% off their services when using our exclusive discount. To find out more & claim visit AF Connect Online.