While I'm the type of person who sometimes is motivated by the carrot dangling in front of me, it is fleeting. It comes and goes. When I get the carrot, there is the momentary rush of accomplishment and then the letdown. I sit here and wonder if that is all there is or ask myself, "What's next?"
I have felt it each time I have prepared for and run a half-marathon. I train and then run it. When I finish, there is that moment of elation. That sense of accomplishment. And then I feel a little lost.
Anyone else out there feel that way?
If so, it's because we are motivated by something extrinsically. Although I was excited about being in great shape to run a half-marathon, the real rush for me came from the medal at the end and the attention of friends and family for completing it.
This probably explains why after running seven half-marathons, I suddenly stopped running. The rush of the accomplishment was no longer new and shiny. The extrinsic motivation had worn off and I was left with a shallow and empty feeling.
Who wants to feel that way?
I certainly didn't and so I stopped running. For three years.
And now I have started again, but this time my perspective has shifted. I'm looking within for motivation rather than the extrinsic rewards.
I'm doing it for me now. I'm doing it for my health. I want to feel better on the inside, because I know it will do so much for my physical, mental, and spiritual health.
Srini Rao, Unmistakeable Creative Podcast Host and author says, "On the other hand, if the work feels like a privilege, it's a lot easier to show up day after day."
I feel privileged that at 51-years-old I have overall solid health, but I know I can do better for myself. I haven't always looked at it that way, but I am now and it feels a lot better. It makes training easier, and I want to work out rather than telling myself I have to work out.
It's all in the perspective. When we remove the outside factors and look solely within, we find more motivation. In the big picture, that's what counts.
I'm a lover of life, an eternal optimist, and I have an intense desire to add value through simple living and positive vibes.