Light a Spark: 4 Ways to Fire Up Your Motivation

The first step is always the hardest—it’s a cliché I’ve found to be quite true when it comes to eating well, working out, losing weight, or really any new venture. The truth is, getting started on the journey to a healthier you can feel scary, overwhelming, even immobilizing.

I’ve found that breaking it up into small steps—think of lighting a spark instead of starting a whole fire—can make it feel a bit more do-able. That’s what the tips below will help you do: light a spark that, in time, will develop into a fire to fuel your resolve.

Come up with a “why.” You’ll never be motivated to start anything if you don’t have a good reason to do so. Come up with a few reasons why you want to get back into shape or lose weight or eat a healthy diet or whatever goal you’re trying to achieve. Is it because you want to be around for your grandchildren? To feel more energetic? To be able to be an active participant in your life? Remind yourself of these motivators when you need a boost.

ID your fears. Finding out what’s keeping you from getting started is key. Is it a fear of failure? Or are you worried about actually succeeding? That might sound strange, but many people are afraid of how their life will change when they reach their goal or having to continue to live up to everyone’s expectations. Unsure if fear is a factor for you? Check out the questions in this blog to find out.

Put an end to excuses. There’s always going to be something that gets in the way, whether it’s a late night stuck at work or a traffic jam that keeps you from the gym or a birthday party or holiday that makes sticking to your healthy eating plan difficult. If you want to be successful, you have to be willing to let go of excuses and do what it takes. Do you make excuses? If so, ask yourself why, along with a few other important questions.

Be Your Own Cheerleader. Berating yourself for slip-ups won’t spur you on. Instead, it will make you feel guilty and depressed, and it can ultimately throw you off course. Focus on staying positive, rewarding yourself for every small victory you achieve.

Have you struggled to start a spark in your life? Why/why not?

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About Bob Greene

Bob is an exercise physiologist and certified personal trainer specializing in fitness, metabolism and weight loss and the driving force behind The Best Life. He holds a master’s degree from the University of Arizona and is a member of the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Council on Exercise. For 30 years, he has worked with clients and consulted on the design and management of fitness, spa, and sports medicine programs.

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