mindset bite #024 - why motivation is a farce and the truth about quotes


I simply adore Mel Robbins. My introduction to her was on Tom Bilyeu's show "Impact Theory" and it all begins with motivation - and how it's complete bullshit...

It was an eye-opener for me. A huge breakthrough

I mean, think about it. How many times have you gone to bed filled with energy of what you're going to do tomorrow, or had a moment of "motivation" spark up in you, only for it to be gone the next minute...

Motivation is bullshit, it's all external... what you need is a deep-underlying reason, an emotional connection to doing what it is that you're doing.

What you need is intrinsic motivation

And this is the problem with quotes, they're a form of external motivation. But, they're all powerful if we see them for what they truly are... if we let them conjure up in us the emotions needed to elicit some form of intrinsic motivation - but we only see them for the words that are written, not the truth or the power behind them

We butcher them. We don't do them justice. We take them for granted, we treat them as trite, and in turn, we don't get out of them what we should...

"whether you think you can or you can't, you're 100% right" - now, many people would see this and blow it off - but there's so much truth to it... if you don't think you can do something, you'll never take the first step! If you do think you can do something, well, you'll do what you can to make it your reality

Far too many people see quotes and dismiss them straight away, or they look at them and say "yeah, that sums me up" in some form of egotistical way, instead of truly letting that quote become a form of identity for them...

But again, these quotes are all a form of external motivation, and they won't work without a deeper-rooted internalised motivation

And this is what you need to discover, your own form of internal motivation. Your WHY ... your reason for doing what it is you do, your reason for wanting to achieve the things you want to achieve...

To get here, I love to ask one of these two questions. The first to sporty kids, the second to adults: "It's 5am in the morning, freezing cold, pissing down rain and you've got to go out and get your run in. Why do you go?" or "You've just worked a 14hr day, you come home at 9pm and find bills all over the table - you can choose to either go to bed or do 2 more hours of work... what makes you choose the 2 more hours of work"

When you have your answer, go deeper and ask why...

Why do you want to make that rep squad? Do you want to make your parents proud? Fantastic, use that fire. Do you want to prove to yourself that you're capable of it? Awesome, keep that burning inside of you... 

Why will you work that extra 2 hours? Is it so that you can pay those bills and give yourself and your family the life they deserve? If so, it's pretty emotional yeah - brings up some feelings and energy - and that's what we're after here

My personal intrinsic motivation, my why is two-fold. #1 is to give back just a little to my parents who have given me the world - to be able to send them on a worldwide holiday... #2 is due to my past, the demons I've had to battle, and a passion that no young athlete or adolescent will ever have to endure the heartache I did, nor battle the demons I did - that they'd receive the guidance and support they wholeheartedly deserve to achieve success on their own terms in their sport and life

That's what gets me up of a morning. That's what gives me energy when I think there's none to find. That's what quotes and forms of external motivation unlock inside of me. And it can be the same for you too...

So, instead of seeking more and more external motivation and fleeting moments of energy - seek to discover your deeper-rooted passion and why for doing what it is that you do. That's the real work that needs to be done... and the best news is, that once you discover it, it's always there and with you for life


Actionable Tips/Questions:

  • Know that quotes only work when we see the truth within them... taking them for simply words brings you nothing... you've got to let the words overcome you and believe in what they're telling you with all you have
  • Discover your why/the deeper rooted reason for doing that which you do...
  • "If it's 5am in the morning, freezing cold, pissing down rain and I've got to go out and run. Why do I run. Why do I want to make this rep squad/national squad/become a professional so bad?
  • Then, when you think you have the answer, ask why and go deeper...
Nick Maier