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I didn’t want to go to the gym.
I mean, I wanted what going to the gym would ultimately bring: increased strength, more energy, a desire for healthier foods, and an overall improvement in my personal fitness. But I didn’t want to put in the work; I didn’t want to go to the gym.
I know that I’m not alone in my struggles to maintain motivation for the things that I really do sincerely want for myself. In fact, I’ve written about this many times over the past 5 months. (This year-long journey of learning the art of self-care has been quite enlightening thus far.)
Motivation ebbs and flows, and many factors play into our decision to act (or not to act) when it comes to working toward our personal goals. Over and over again, my vision board has proven effective in re-inspiring me to put energy into the things that matter most to me. Maintaining high levels of motivation requires a certain level of vigilance.
The difficult thing about many goals is that it takes quite a bit of time to realize the benefits. Not going to the gym provides me with immediate gratification in the form of avoidance: Not having to change clothes, not having to battle traffic to get there, not having to give up time that I could be using to work on other projects.
And science backs this up. Just ask the researchers behind the book The Marshmallow Test (Amazon Associate Link).
For yesterday’s act of self-care, I did something I didn’t want to do. Yep, I ignored the itty bitty shitty committee’s pleas to skip exercise, and I took one of my favorite classes at the gym.
And I loved it!
Afterward, I came home and got on the treadmill to accumulate a few more minutes of activity. In a way, exercise is a motivator to exercise. Interesting.
What’s been your experience with doing something you didn’t want to do?