There is a huge problem with motivation. Don’t get me wrong, motivation is important, but by itself it is fickle. Motivation is based on emotions and emotions are temporary. If you wait to feel motivated to do something, then until the motivation strikes, you’re not getting anything done.
In John Maxwell’s book, “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership,” Maxwell says “We overestimate the event & underestimate the process.” Most of us have attended some event, or perhaps listened to a motivational speaker that sparked motivation within us. We leave the event fired up, focused on our vision, and ready to execute. The problem is that a week goes by, you run into some adversity, the event becomes a shadow of it’s former self, and suddenly the motivation is gone.
“We overestimate the event & underestimate the process.” Herein lies the solution. Motivation is the “event” and discipline is the “process.” To achieve anything great in life, you must have the discipline to act, regardless of how motivated you are. Motivation is feeling like doing something. Discipline is doing it despite how you feel.
So, we’ve identified the problem, motivation is temporary and feelings-based. So why is it that I say discipline is the solution? Because discipline creates motivation! If you’re disciplined, you’re working at something & you’re working on it consistently. When you work on something consistently, you’ll start to see results. When you start to see results, you’ll find yourself getting motivated.
Take the gym for example. Think back a few months. How many people out there were motivated in January to hit the gym? Here we are in April, and the people that relied solely on motivation to go to the gym, well, they aren’t going anymore. On the flip side, there are people out there right now that started going to the gym in January and stayed disciplined, despite motivation. Those people are seeing results now. They’re in better health. They’ve got a better physique. And guess what? They’re probably motivated by that.
The point is, don’t wait for motivation. Embrace it as it comes but be disciplined regardless. Apply discipline. Get the results. Let the results motivate you. Rinse, wash, repeat.