In an age where we’re constantly peppered by #fitspo and other motivational nonsense, I don’t think it’s any real surprise to hear we’re getting less done than ever. Our waistlines are heading up, while our physical prowess is going down. The number of people just doing the minimum to get by at work is increasing, while the numbers of true masters in their field are slowly dying out. The masses are largely accepting and promoting of mediocrity. Let’s all get hyped on some motivational bullshit and improve the situation, right?
The issue I see is this – motivation is fleeting. Sure your favourite song, a quote from your favourite Instagram celebrity, or a whole heap of stimulants might get you buzzed to smash that gym session, nail your job or do something legitimately great with your life, but once that’s gone what is left? I can speak from experience here – the more you rely on motivation, the more screwed you are.
What you need is inspiration, not motivation. Motivation is external, inspiration is internal. Sure, something motivational might light the fire inside you to achieve greatness, but it’s inspiration that keeps that fire burning long after the match has gone out.
Do you think Dean Karnazes ran 50 marathons, in 50 different American States, on 50 consecutive days, because he spent an hour on Instagram browsing #fitfam, or was he driven by something greater than himself that no amount of physical exhaustion could ever hope to crush?
Do you think Lee Moran, the first guy to squat 1000 pounds (after being knocked out on his first attempt, then having a catastrophic equipment failure that almost killed the platform crew on his third attempt), made this historic lift because he had a new kind of preworkout that day, or did he crumble all of those potential excuses in to a ball, throw that ball in the trash and became legendary because he -knew- he could do it?
Now sure, there’s nothing wrong with double scooping, cranking the tunes and or getting fired up to bang out that new PB or achieve anything great, but if you are 100% reliant on factors outside of yourself, then you’re only setting yourself up to fail long term.
Find what inspires you to achieve, then do whatever you need to do so that can be an inherent part of who you are. Even if the times get tough and the motivation is lacking, you’ll then have no reason to not crush all the obstacles in your way to achieving your greatness.