What Motivates You?

When it comes to getting in great shape, I’ve always maintained that one’s attitude and mindset is at least as important as the “how-to’s”, such as nutrition and exercise. To reach any goal you need to be committed to achieving it. It all comes down to DEEP COMMITMENT. So what does it mean to be committed? To me it means you are obsessed with successfully reaching your goal.

You have to be strongly motivated, but this motivation needs to come from within. This is more like “inspiration” rather than “motivation“. I can try to motivate the Hell outta you, but until you are intrinsically motivated and deeply committed your results will likely be short-lived.

I want to share a story with you that I believe provides a good example of what I’m talking about here. It’s a true story about two frogs I knew named Jack and Jill.   😉

Jack and Jill: A Lesson in Motivation

Jack and Jill lived together on a lily pad in a beautiful pond in the country. They spent most of their days just hanging out, soaking in the sun, going for swims, and eating flies, as frogs are apt to do. One clear day Jack suggested they change things up a bit by taking a trip into the forest, which was just a hop, skip, and a jump away. Jill was excited to go on a little adventure so they both merrily headed off for the forest.

Along the way they encountered a dirt road which they had to cross. It wasn’t a busy road… they would typically see only an occasional cart, cyclist, or pedestrian from a nearby village. So they looked both ways and carefully traversed the dirt road. Soon they found themselves in the forest. It was dense, colorful, and full of life! They set off to explore this new environment and enjoyed an awesome afternoon together.

Before long it began to rain, however, and soon that rain became a torrential downpour! Jack and Jill decided it would be best to head back to the lily pad to avoid being out in a storm. During the trek back to their pond the rain let up to a light drizzle and the sky started to clear again. But they weren’t out of the woods yet (so to speak), for when they eventually arrived back at the dirt road they were in for a surprise. Because of the heavy rains the dirt road had now become a muddy mess, and to make matters worse a cart had gone by while they were away and it’s wheel carved a deep rut in the mud. This created a challenging obstacle for the two little frogs.

As they stood before the rut Jill said, “Now we’re stuck… there’s no way we can get across this huge rut!” But Jack looked at her confidently and stated, “Of course we can. We’ll just jump over. We’re frogs… that’s what we do. It will be easy!” Well, Jill wasn’t convinced and still insisted that she was not able to leap across this chasm. Jack gave her  encouragement and tried to motivate her, but to no avail. So finally Jack said, “OK, look… I’ll SHOW you how to do it by jumping across myself. Then you just do exactly what I do.” So Jack crouched low and leaped into the air, performed a perfect pirouette mid-flight, and landed perfectly on the other side of the rut. “There” he said, “now you do it.”

Jill was afraid and continued to give reasons why she was unable to leap across. After some coaxing, Jack finally convinced her to try. So Jill tentatively stepped forward, sighed, then without fully committing herself she jumped into a half-assed attempt to cross the gap. As can be expected, she didn’t make it across and fell right into the rut.

Now Jill is stuck in a rut. (Hey, we’ve all been there, right?).

      

“I told you I couldn’t do it!” cried Jill, from the bottom of the muddy rut. Jack rolled his eyes and said “OK, now you just have to jump OUT of the rut. Let’s go!” Well, according to Jill this was impossible! This was a deep rut! So once again Jack tried to motivate and encourage her, but nothing helped. So Jack offered “Let me jump in there with you and SHOW you how to jump out.” Which he did. Jack jumped into the rut, directed Jill to watch his every move, and then proceeded to jump up on to one ‘wall’ of the rut, spring across to the other side, and then rebound into a double back flip landing on his feet outside the rut. Jack looked down at Jill and said “now you do it… just like I showed you!”

Jane made another feeble attempt to jump up, but simply hit the side of the rut and slid back down… still stuck in a rut. She just couldn’t get motivated to give it any more effort than that. So after trying to encourage her for a few more minutes, Jack just shrugged and hopped away, heading for the lily pad, leaving Jill alone in her rut.

A little over an hour later, while Jack was relaxing on the lily pad that he now had all to himself, he noticed Jill floating by on another lily pad. “Hey!” he exclaimed, “You made it out! Was it my amazing advise and motivation that helped you get out?”

“No” Jill replied, dryly.

Jack responded with, “Well then it must have been my expert instruction with the jumping tutorials I showed you, right?”

“Not quite,” Jill said.

Jack was puzzled. “So…. what was it then? How did you get outta the rut?”

Jill exclaimed, “Another cart was heading up the road towards me and I HAD to get out!”

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The moral of this story is this:

If you don’t find the motivation within yourself to make positive changes in your life NOW (especially related to your health and fitness), then LIFE will find a way to deliver that motivation later, and it might not be in a form that you like (such as serious illness, chronic pain, injury, accelerated aging, relationship issues, etc). Don’t wait for the proverbial “cart” to come your way; find your own strong reasons to get motivated to take massive action TODAY!

On that topic, I dug up this old video from the archives…  it’s some footage of me competing back in the year 2000 at Ontario’s Strongest Man.

I was sure hungry back then. Watching this old footage stirred something up inside of me. It lit a fire under my @ss to get motivated to take action on some goals I’ve been stalling on for a while. Over the next few weeks I’m going to take on some big goals and make a solid plan to reach them. I’ll keep you updated.

I thought the soundtrack I used for this video summed up that feeling nicely. The need to be passionate about something and go after it. This is an excerpt from a seminar with the motivational speaker, Les Brown.

“You don’t get in life what you ‘want’… you get in life what you ‘are’. You must program yourself for success… and never lose your hunger!”

“Success leaves clues. Always follow those people who are doing what you want to do at the level that you want to do it, and learn from them.”

“People who are hungry are willing to do whatever it takes.”

“You have greatness within you! Don’t allow your circumstances to determine who you are. Don’t allow your negative thoughts to hold you back.

You can do more than you can ever begin to imagine…”

Stay Strong,

Josh

PS- For a comprehensive program with practical techniques for setting powerful goals and conditioning your subconscious mind to reach those goals, check out my ebook:

=> Get Mental: The Psychology of Strength

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