Motivation is imaginary……

“When I’m motivated, I will get started” 

“Once that wave of motivation appears, i’m there” 

“I just need some motivation, and then I will do it” 

“I’m just not motivated right now” 

The infamous motivation…..ever noticed that it’s the most elusive feeling in our repertoire?

Motivation is defined as – ‘a reason or reasons for acting or behaving in a particular way’, and is often the reason people do not get anything done.

Whilst sometimes we can find our motivation impacted because we are exhausted or burnt out, the crux of a lack of motivation often frequents in a lack of powerful goals. Those on my Level 4 courses will be well aware that I talk about the importance of having goals that scare you a bit. Not because we are sadistic, but because when goals are too easy = no motivation. When goals are too simple = no motivation. When goals are boring = no motivation. See where I am going with this?

If we want to tap into endless productivity, we need to let go of the elusive motivation factor, and look at it as an unhelpful distraction, and instead look at two factors:


When we have strong GOALS, and a clear direction we have to DISCIPLINE ourselves to achieve them. This therefore generates productivity like a small fire underneath us. It heats us up, propels us forward and generates energy! And, then we need to rinse and repeat, your next goals need to be prepped before the last ones finish so you keep building MOMENTUM.

Think about this example, you decide that you want to lose weight (the infamous new year goal) you create a food plan, start moving more (steps, activity, workouts) and you have a date in mind to move towards (holiday, wedding, big event that really matters). You tell everyone, they hold you accountable, and as the compliments kick in, you feel more motivated (from the discipline paying off). You reach your goal – yay! – BUT then, the event passes and you don’t have another goal to reach, so you drop the discipline and the elusive motivation vanishes, and it all begins to fall apart…. Do you know someone who this happened to? perhaps it happened to you?

The thing about goals, is we need to look at them as a LONG TERM behaviour. We need to break them down and have ongoing goals moving forward. We can get caught in a trap of making a goal, reaching it and then falling short as there is nowhere else to go – and then we get caught in the ‘waiting for motivation’ when the reason you had motivation was because you had this incredible goal to reach.

So, when we are building goals, we need to consider:

What’s the BIG goal – whats the long game? 
How can this be broken into manageable chunks? 
What does this look like on a monthly basis? 
What does this look like on a weekly basis in terms of behaviour and actions? (discipline) 
How will you track and measure it? 
Who will you have accountability with? 
When is your review date? (at least 4 weeks before completion) 
Rinse and Repeat 

The action creates the discipline, which therefore develops productivity. Ever noticed that the people who are most focussed and achieve a lot in life are always working towards something?

Goals are good for our well-being, mindset and mental health. Our brains were not created to be stuck in a rut, as Paul Mort says ‘your brain was created to solve problems, and when it has no problems to solve – it will create them!’.

What’s your goal? How can you break it down? What action can you take? What are the steps to make the discipline happen?



Want to learn more? 

Are you looking for a deeper understanding of child mental health? Our Level 4 Child and Adolescent Mental Health Coaching Diploma takes you into an in depth dive of child mental health and how you can support.  You can join our Level 4 training (here).


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Further help 

For more articles about mental health visit – ARTICLES 

To learn more about child and adolescent mental health visit – COURSES 

For resources to support child and adolescent mental health visit –RESOURCES 

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