It is my experience that the vast majority of people on the planet are not “self-motivated. " Unfortunately, those who “are" receive a great deal of admiration. This leaves the rest of us feeling pretty bad about ourselves. I believe we are simply bucking the natural current of being human. The first thing we need to do is stop beating ourselves up for being human. Accept it for the fact it is and let's begin to move into the solution.
Hiring a personal fitness trainer is one of the best ways to receive motivation. Make sure they are certified by an accredited organization and that they have some experience under their belts. Making a commitment to a friend/spouse/sibling/parent to go to the gym together is another good option. Partner training is very effective. Usually, when one of you is feeling less than inspired, the other one will offer the encouragement needed to get you to the gym. Fitness classes of all kinds are a super way to stay on track. The format may be appealing to you or the teacher may become a role model and motivator. Also, the comradery that often occurs, when you attend the same class for awhile, can be very motivating. Some people find that simply enrolling at a gym and making that financial commitment is motivation enough.
It is very important to have a goal or goals to strive for. They must be realistic, however, or they can backfire on you. Training for a 5K race that is 3-6 months away is realistic. Planning in January to drop 3 clothing sizes by spring is not realistic. Making goals that are attainable and then setting new ones when those have been reached is an excellent tool for staying motivated.
Take a look at your thinking patterns as well. You may have a lot of negative self-talk going on. That has to stop if you really plan to be successful. Become your own support coach. Whenever you can, catch yourself and either simply tell yourself “No, I'm not going to talk to myself that way anymore" or literally turn whatever you have said around, putting a positive spin on it. I can't stress this enough. The power of your own thoughts and how they create in your life is huge.
Finally, surround yourself with inspirational stimulation such as pictures, reading material, the TV show you choose and the radio/CDs that you choose to listen to . . . these all matter. You are going to vibrate in accordance to anything that holds your attention, so choose wisely. As you vibrate, so do you create. Always remember that like attracts like, so submerge yourself in those things that are positive, uplifting and inspirational to you. You will succeed.
If fitness and nutrition are top concerns of yours, or if they should be, don't miss a single article from Julia Hall. Ms. Hall has over 15 years of experience in the fitness world as a personal trainer, motivator, and certified nutritionist. She's been published in leading health magazines and regularly posts articles from the fitness frontlines in Taos, New Mexico where she lives with her partner and two wonderful dogs.