This next year is sure to bring many new and exciting things for all of us. One that comes to mind is the launch of a new Mars rover. The Mars 2020 will search for signs of habitable conditions on Mars in the ancient past and for signs of past microbial life itself. The robot is only about the size and shape of a small vehicle, and weighs in at 2314 pounds, which is less than a modern compact car. However, it will need a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket to get it up to space.
This rocket, an expendable launch system, weighs a monstrous 1,300,000 pounds (about 590 tonnes) and uses 627,105 pounds of liquid rocket fuel in the four minute launch sequence. It is the power of this thrust that sends the rocket speeding out of Earth’s atmosphere at more than 58,000 km/hr. A powerful force like this that can move a heavy object in one direction at great speed takes a colossal opposing force to stop. Once it begins to move with so much power, it maintains tremendous momentum forward towards it’s goal of arriving on that distant planet.
The end goal of gently landing the small rover on the surface of Mars would not be possible without years of planning, meticulous execution, and a powerful launch. If our goals are to be successful they usually follow a similar course. You must have a detailed plan, a lot of fuel, and put a ton of effort into the first action steps. Your motivation is the fuel, or driving force that leads you to take action, and keeps that process going until your goal is met. Motivation isn’t just about getting yourself moving, but keeping your momentum despite the forces and friction that are working to slow you down and hold you back from reaching your full potential.
If rocket-fuel-level motivation was so easy to create and maintain, we would all already have it right? Although it may currently feel impossible for you to create, there’s no great secret to achieving it. However, there are important action steps to take and shifts to make and that is what I will share with you now.
1. Create a motivated mindset
Remember when you were a little kid and you’d be so excited about something that you could barely sleep and then woke up at three in the morning because you couldn’t wait for the next day to begin? Children are filled with emotions and continually impassioned by the world around them. Everything happens on a visceral level and nothing seems impossible, so it’s much easier to create that high, humming energy at a moment’s notice. As an adult, the only thing keeping you from this same energy are your own limiting self beliefs.
While laying in bed at night, start imagining your path to your goal and all of the good things that will come in achieving it. Rather than seeing it as a future event, put yourself there in the current moment and feel into the emotions of those events. Allow yourself to become passionate and enlivened about all that is possible, and fall asleep with those emotions, excited to take on new projects and objectives the following day.
2. Change the status of your goals from optional to necessary
If you operate in an energy of someday, that day moves further and further away. When you are living with continual, powerful motivation your goals are present in your thought process, and every action (or inaction) can bring you closer towards them. For this to happen, your goals need to be a priority, and always in the forefront of your mind. Create a daily ritual of setting 3-5 action steps towards your goals each morning, reminding yourself of them with a few deep, grounding breaths midday, and closing your evening by reviewing what you achieved. This reminds you how important taking action is and will keep you focused on seizing each opportunity you have.
3. Rather than making your goals realistic, make your reality meet your goals
SMART goals are a familiar concept to anyone who is working on becoming their best selves. Anyone who has worked with Eric Edmeades knows that this style of goal setting can often limit us in what we believe we can achieve. Rather than making a list of sensible goals, start visualizing the path to your dreams. Big goals are made intangible by having no concept of the steps you need to take to get from where you stand to that end point. Imagine the mountain ahead, seeing each peak, valley and cliff clearly. When you can visualize and understand what’s in front of you, you are better able to recognize opportunities to move you through each step.
Rather than staring up at a looming behemoth, ask yourself questions to work backwards from the peak so the clouds can clear and you see the descent to the base. For example, begin by imagining yourself as healthy and fit. Feel the confidence and vitality you would experience, allowing those positive emotions to overtake you. This enables you to see the path from an optimistic space. Next ask yourself: “what would I be doing if I felt this way? What do I need to be able to do those things? Who can help me get those things? How do I create that lifestyle and reach out to those people? This step by step mental process enables you to see what you want as something you already have.
4. Get inspired by success stories
Sometimes we get caught in a place of believing that good things can only happen to others, but we ourselves are not deserving of them. Remind yourself that we are all very much alike, and often the only thing that enables someone to do something that you haven’t is their motivation and willingness to move forward. When you read about others journeys to their goals, remember that if they can find their fuel, so can you. Use their experiences as proof that what you want is possible. Find their stories and read them often.
5. Remember your resources
If you want to go fast go alone, if you want to go far go together. My favorite thing about the WildFit 90 day challenge is that each piece of the larger goal is achieved one step, one day, one choice at a time; and it is done with the support of a tribe. Even if you have completed your challenge, your tribe is still with you and you have resources to help you meet your wellness goals.
If you need more daily support and want to take your understanding of health and nutrition to the next level you can join Living WildFit to deepen your learning and have community support. If you want to go back into Spring but need some help building up your rocket fuel to get there, join the Back to Spring group so that you can launch into it together. If you have a complex health issue and you cannot seem to get ahead of your symptoms, hire a WildFit coach who will work with you to uncover the root issue and help keep you accountable as you move forward.
When looking at your year ahead and the health goals you want to achieve, the most important thing is to begin from a happy space and being open to change. When you create this energy you can discover the emotions that will propel you into your healthiest year yet.