Internal vs. External Motivation

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          When it comes to overcoming any difficult task in life, having a deep sense of purpose and meaning is the only way to succeed. Without it, when things get difficult you are more likely to quit. I want to help you develop the foundation necessary to push through obstacles and achieve whatever it is you are looking to do. In this blog post, I will take you through the process of finding your why by covering INTERNAL and EXTERNAL motivation.

          I don’t believe most (younger) people start working out because they decided they wanted to be “healthier”. Of course, you have the people who are severely obese and need to make some drastic lifestyle changes, but that’s not who I’m referring to. I’m talking about the Average Joe who feels insecure about how they look and wants to make a change so they can feel comfortable taking their shirt off at the beach. Let me take you through my initial motivation to hit the gym and you tell me if it sounds familiar.

          The reason I first started working out my freshmen year of High School was because I thought if I could just get jacked that all my problems would be solved (anyone else? nope just me, ok then). I assumed it would allow me to get the attention of any girl and command respect from other guys.

          Unfortunately, this was not the case. Not only does it take years to develop the physique I had in mind, but apparently girls value personality at the same level or higher than physical attraction (who knew!?). So, my initial motivation to hit the gym flat lined 2 weeks in when I didn’t get the results that I had hoped for. This process repeated a few times until I finally found what it took to be consist in the gym and that took changing my WHY.

          After over 8 years of training, it’s easy to see why I didn’t have the motivation to keep pushing more than 2 weeks at a time. My WHY for working out was EXTERNAL and out of my control. When I didn’t get the results I was hoping for in the time that I expected, I would just quit.

          External motivation may help to create an initial spark here and there. Past that it won’t do you much good. If you are waiting around for someone else’s approval to make you feel validated, then you may never get it. Think of it like this, it’s kind of selfish to think that you are so important that people should notice your success and give you the validation you are seeking. Everyone is so focused on themselves that it takes a drastic change for someone to even realize you’ve made any progress.

          Now my WHY is an INTERNAL drive to get the most out of life. I truly believe that once you learn to be your own source of motivation you become unstoppable. If you can motivate yourself without any outside assistance, then everything else is a bonus. Motivating yourself allows you to do away with any excuses you may have. For example, I enjoy listening to music while I work out, but if I forget them at home and I’m at the gym, you better believe I’m still getting the same quality workout in.

          The point is this, taking pre-workout and listening to music while you workout is not a bad thing, BUT you should not rely on it to have a solid workout. Everything you add on top of INTERNAL motivation should be icing on the cake. I challenge you for your next workout to do it without headphones or taking pre-workout and see what you are made of!

          I know that being your own source of motivation is easier said than done. However, if you are looking to improve your physique and become the best version of yourself then it is necessary. If you need help developing your sense of INTERNAL motivation, check out the book “Can’t Hurt Me” by David Goggins. After reading his book you will be ready to run through a brick wall!

I wish you the best in your journey of developing your dream physique. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below or shoot me an email at mailto:[email protected]!

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