Weighty Matters

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Musing on Motivation

on March 11, 2013

Motivation is a tricky thing sometimes.  It can be as powerful as a locomotive, as out of our control as the tide, energizing as lightning, and as elusive as an improbable wish.

If we could lock it down or coalesce it into something we could plug into our psyches and turn off and on with a switch, we’d be golden.  We could also license our product and make a gazillion bucks.

Alack, alas, that’s a ginormous “if”.

There’s no one-size-fits-all, unifying motivation.  Different things propel different goals.  Even when the goals are similar, what flicks your switch might not do a thing for mine and vice versa.  There isn’t even a common formula, or a common sense formula for that matter.  Five years ago, I wouldn’t even consider weight loss surgery.  I had to hit my tipping point which was surely not the same for what motivated my friends to choose surgery.

You know that sports shoe slogan, Just Do It?  I wonder if that actually worked for any significant number of people.I remember when I was a young teen, a colleague/friend of my parents suggested that when I really got a hard crush on a boy, I’d lose weight.  Care to guess how many crushes I experienced that didn’t lead to successful weight loss?

When I was a kid, I wanted a horse of my own more than anything in the whole wide world.  My father told me if I lost 50 pounds, he’d buy me one.  Even the promise of my heart’s desire wasn’t motivation enough.

There are some things that do involve an almost A plus B = C motivational equation.  For example, I love my job and want to keep it so I go to work every day and do my job to the best of my ability.  Easy, right?  I wonder if I would have been able to keep my job if losing weight had been a requirement.

Motivation feels like it should be more physically substantial than a wish, a want, a dream or a goal.   Unfortunately, in many cases, it feels like it is less tangible — that it really is a wish, a want, a dream, or a goal.  It’s powerful and can also be a power suck when it’s gone.  It can also be darned hard to locate when it takes a vacation from our lives.

I don’t know why I’m musing on this tonight.  I haven’t lost my motivation.


That’s the crux of this.  I’m afraid of losing my motivation.  I had such a great weekend and now I’m second-guessing the positive juice out of fear.  Begone, fear.  I refuse to give you power.

I will continue on my weight loss and fitness journey.  I will not abandon myself and my determination.  I am going to keep on with the effort, reach my goals, and build on the success.  Healthy eating, regular exercise, and a pro-fitness lifestyle are my present and they damn well are also my future.


7 responses to “Musing on Motivation

  1. Hope says:

    I feel like motivation can be a jumping off point, but that sticking with a weight loss plan involves a fundamental change in how we see things. Wanting some sort of reward might motivate me to pass on the cookies for a day or two, but continuously passing on cookies involves deciding that you just don’t want to eat that many cookies.

  2. Susanne says:

    I think when you’ve reached most of your goals with respect to your weight loss, you should think about this ebook. We’re a small group here, and there are so many others out there that would find this just as interesting, especially when the next to last phase, the skin reduction, is done. Keeping the cost low is great, especially in these tough times.


  3. Mary Stella says:

    Thank you for your responses. Honestly, no, I haven’t thought about turning the blog posts into a book. I think that’s because I write the posts for me and feel like if I thought about writing them for a book then they’d be about writing for other people. If they’re for me, it’s a reasonable question to wonder why I post them in public for anyone to read. That is my way of holding myself accountable and maintaining a rigorous honesty about the process.

    I also absolutely love that, along the way, we have this little blog community with your feedback, comments and insights.

    Of course, now you’ve given me something to think about. Maybe after I reach my goal, I could compile the posts into a book, format it for e-readers and put it up online for sale. I’d want it to be really inexpensive — like between .99 and 1.99 so that eventually I could cover the costs of the cover art and formatting help.

    That doesn’t mean that I’ll stop blogging but anything new could then still be written for me and the blog community. I don’t know what it means to live life at a goal weight so they’ll probably be more for me to explore.

    Thanks again for being here and for sharing the journey.

  4. Skye says:

    I don’t think that musing on motivation — the gaining and losing of it — must come from fear that you will lose it. I think that you are a thinker and you ponder all the aspects of your life, and in this blog you ponder all the aspects of your lifelong struggle and current successes with weight loss. So it make sense that you muse about motivation. This was a very thoughtful and insightful post and really makes me think.

  5. Susanne says:

    Have you ever thought of writing a book about your journey? I was wondering why I found it so fascinating, then I realized it’s your writing. You could use your blog posts…seriously.

    Think. About. It.

  6. jenfullmoon says:

    I really like this post because well, I feel like I must not have much motivation to do anything huge. My motivation tonight was to read, watch TV and knit, and that was all, and that’s pretty much every day for me. But it doesn’t seem to matter how badly I want something big or not–or at least, I never want anything badly enough to go through hell and high water in order to get it. I can’t seem to get over the parts where doing something big is hard and scary and I have no clue and I chicken out easily. Your saying that no matter how badly you wanted a horse, you couldn’t lose weight….okay, so weight nor horses aren’t my issues, but somehow that strikes a chord with me. Like dreams/wishes/goals don’t overpower practicality.

  7. Mary Stella says:

    I was musing so hard I forgot to share some great news! Remember when I told you that my Pyxi dog is overweight and was diagnosed with an underperforming thyroid? She’s been on a daily pill, I’m watching her diet, and we’re exercising more. She’s lost three pounds, her endurance is up, and she’s doing great. A couple more pounds and my Pyxi will be just right!

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