Man it feels like it’s been FOR-EVER since I’ve written a post.
I’ve got to admit to you, the last few weeks for me has been a bit of a private mental hell. One that left me feeling a bit defeated, lost, and unmotivated.
I’m not sure how to explain it, but every few years – what I call “milestone years” – I start having these mental shifts that really make me stand back and take a look at my life, and where I’m headed. It’s like this maturing in a way that I can’t control, it just happens.
I felt that shift happen at different ages in my life..
18, 21, 25, 30…
And now at the age of 36. It came over me like a wave, and struck me to the very core – almost throwing me off my game.
Reasons Why I Lost My Fitness Motivation
When things like this happen, the only thing YOU can do is take a step back. And you know what, I did.
There were days where I just didn’t want to get out of bed, I felt I had no purpose. Or I would lie awake at night with my mind toiling in turmoil, trying to unscramble everything I had going on in my brain.
At one point, I felt I was just going through the motions – literally. I would get up, eat (or not), get dressed, hit the gym (halfheartedly), then start working on client plans and programming. My food choices suffered as I kind of just was winging it, ordering out a lot (the Chinese spot LOVES me, so does Grub Hub), and drinking about a gallon of sangria a week (ok I’m exaggerating but it DID get to a point where I was like, GURL, your liver tho!).
But one day I just said to myself, enough is ENOUGH.
I can’t keep doing this.
My life should NOT be this. And I need to get off my butt, and seriously figure out what in the HELL is going on with me. Get to the bottom of WHY I’m feeling this way, and fix it pronto.
Writing Down My Goals and Getting to the Bottom of My Lost Fitness Motivation
The first call to action for me was taking a complete step back, grabbing my notebook, and writing it out. I had to have a “come to Jesus” moment with my pen, and that paper.
I cracked open my journal, and I honestly asked myself, “Girl, WHAT is bothering you? What’s wrong?”. Now, when you take on this task, you have to do it with an open mind. You have to approach things with your head clear, and not think that hard.
Ask yourself what’s rotting at your core, purge it through writing, put it out in the real world and then – FACE IT.
So with that, my pen started to scribble on the paper, and out poured everything that had been eating at me. And honestly, what a cathartic feeling that was.
After writing out your main issues, take a moment to read them. What you might find is that a lot of what you’re stressing over are temporary worries. I’ve called mine my “First World Problems”. Because at the end of the day, there are folks out in the world worse off than I was in that moment. When you put things into perspective, you can much easier get over your funk and back on track with your goals.
Reigniting That Fire – Steps You Need to Take Right Now to Get Your Groove Back
The best part for me in all of this was the immediate weight lifted off my shoulders once I was able to identify what was REALLY bothering me, and the source of my personal anguish.
The first call to action after writing down what I was truly feeling was now coming up with solutions.
So, on another sheet of paper in my journal, I took that list of what’s bothering me, and I wrote an “action plan” of how to correct that situation.
For instance, one of the things that was bothering me was that I was feeling like my blog and social media were becoming too sterile. I felt like I wasn’t truly connecting with my audience and readers in a way that makes me seem REAL (in the way I want to), sharing my true experiences all while sharing my expertise.
The end result, this very blog you’re reading right now.
How much more relateable is it when you see someone in my position, who coaches and trains others for a living, going through the same exact things you do…
But now, sharing with you how I got out of it, how YOU can get out of it, and do it in a way that many fitness professionals just don’t.
One problem solved – easily! And trust there were others, but the jist I’m getting at is that I did something about it, wrote out the solution, and put that solution into action.
So here are my personal tips for you to be able to work through your own downtime and period of lost fitness motivation and mental funk:
Step 1: Write It Down
I’m very big on making goals tangible. There’s something about writing down your thoughts, and putting them into the real world that allows you to make things happen – for real.
During this process, be honest with yourself, write from your heart, don’t think. And definitely don’t try to filter your emotions. To get over this temporary hurdle, you’ve got to come clean, and remember… Only you will see this list so it doesn’t matter how small or “insignificant” the issues you’re facing may be to others. They are your emotions so own it, unabashedly.
Step 2: Read What You’ve Written, Face It Head On
Now that you’ve got it out there, it’s time to face the reality. I like to say to read your list as though you are listen to a friend talk. So take yourself out the experience from a personal point of view.
Instead, read what’s bothering you through an objective eye, this way you can ascertain how serious the problem is, and if it’s is indeed something you can tackle on your own.
And don’t be afraid to ask for help. I mean in all seriousness, depression is a REAL thing that can go untreated for many people. So if what’s eating away at you is something that is going to require professional help, please reach out for it and don’t be ashamed.
But on the other hand, if what you’re feeling can be remedied on your own, here’s what you will do next…
Step 3: Write Out Your Solutions
Once you know exactly what’s at the core of your mental funk, it’s much easier to face those demons head on – and cast them back to Hell.
I call my personal list my “Plan for Rebirth and Renewal”. A little cheesy I know, but hey, works for me! But by now writing out exactly how I’m going to tackle and fix every single one of my personal issues gives me more control of the situation. It allows me to see that, yes, I can work through this, and I WILL work through this – and this is how.
But none of this does any good by simply writing it down – you’ve got to put it all in motion.
Step 4: Put Your “Rebirth” Plan in Action
The next step for me is simply making a “to do” list. A small chunk of daily tasks that I need to take to reach the overall solution to each one of the points on my list.
What I encourage you to do is simply make a list of what I call “The Big 3’s”.
- 3 Tasks that you want to complete for the week that work towards your overall goal.
- 3 Tasks that you perform each day that lead to the completion of your 3 goals for each week.
It’s really a small little trick that does a world of wonders in getting things done. The overall goal could be something big. So, let’s take for instance my plan to revamp my blog and social media. Obviously this isn’t something that can be done in one day alone.
So I set up that as one of the 3 goals I would accomplish this week. Then for let’s say, Monday, my 3 tasks to work towards that overall weekly goal would look something like this:
- Task 1: Write a new blog post based on my experiences in getting over my personal mental funk.
- Task 2: Purchase a better camera to be able to take some personal pics from my fitness life to share on my blog and social media.
- Task 3: Share 2 personal posts on Facebook and Instagram from my workouts and meal plan this week, and share about my progress on my training program.
See! Little things like that. And I’m telling you…
It really does work! Tremendously.
So I encourage you to try it out, and to stop beating yourself up for going through a temporary downtime. It honestly happens to the best of us. And you can now rest assured you have some new tools to find your way back to your wonderful, self motivated, and awesome self again!