Motivation is something we have to find, work for and create every day. There is not a day that goes by, five years into my journey, that I am not tempted to turn the other way and digress to the path I once walked. Every day I choose to remain moving forward because I have learned that growing and being healthy is what makes me happy and I will never go back to that unhappy place I once lived.
I am Ashley Johns of Fierce Forward. I met Kelly through a Health & Fitness Blogger’s Conference in 2012 and loved her energy and spirit! I soon learned about her transformation and realized we have a lot in common.
Five years ago, I was in the darkest place in my life. I was depressed, alone and no longer recognized the girl looking back at me in the mirror. It was New Year’s Day, and I remember feeling this sense of letting go, like I was ready to face it all. You see, the night before, I sat waiting for my boyfriend to pick me up to head to Chicago for a night out with friends and I remember looking down at my feet and seeing a pile of clothes I had rummaged through and in that pile of clothes, not one top hid the rolls I so desperately needed to hide to feel beautiful on that special night. Not one pair of pants zipped any more. How did it all accumulate to this one evening I wondered; how had I not seen how far deep I was over the past year.
That night, I was in my head the entire evening. I faked my smiles but could not help but wonder how I had let my self go. There I stood, Sarah McLachlan, pouring in the background to give me the courage to shed my tears, looking at my self in the mirror. I leaned in closer as the tears began streaming down my cheek and truly saw, for the first time, how sad I really was. For the next ten minutes, I balled, facing my self in the mirror, watching me let go. I realize now that I needed to face it all, and I needed to then let go of it all so I could choose.
That day, I chose to move forward because I knew there was no more room to move backwards. Five years later, I live to empower others to live the life they need to be happy, to Fierce Forward towards what it is that makes their existence meaningful and passionate.
In the beginning motivation was high! I was fired up and passionate about my purpose and that fueled my motivation. Everything was new and learning about exercises and new, healthy food inspired me and so I never had any issues with motivation in the beginning until I hit my first plateau. Often times, results motivate us but you aren’t always going to see results. In fact, because they’re cumulative, you often wake up one random day and see a new muscle you hadn’t noticed before or are able to button a pair of pants you weren’t able to the week before. But what I’ve learned with motivation is that you have to look for it everywhere and anywhere because motivation is not a lasting thing, so you must do what you can to keep the fire alive.
Here are my five tips for being motivated:
1. Find some bangin’ new music that amps you up and charges you with excitement. This may take a good hour or two, but take the time to give your ipod a new playlist. Discard the old and rename the new. Some great names for a new playlist are: Fierce Forward/I’m Fierce/No Quit Here to name just a few
2. Back to the drawing board and rewrite your goals. Sometimes our goals become a little dusty and it’s just a matter of sitting down, taking the time away from everything else, and evaluating your current goals. What is it that you’re working for? Why are you working for it and what will you sacrifice to get it. Don’t forget yourPurpose. Purpose: Your vision, your direction. What is your purpose, why are you doing it and what will it mean to you. Rehearse and know it; know it to the bone.
3. Time for a new pair of kicks. Peruse some stores and look for a new pair of shoes that will get your butt to the gym! Seriously, with a new piece of workout apparel, motivation (especially in us women) is lit. I know when I get a new pair of shoes or a new top, I look forward to rocking it at the gym. Find something you’re excited about and comfortable in and rock it. You deserve it and you will work for it so wear it and wear it proud. A Fierce Forward Intention Bracelet stack can help immensely in your motivation. Visuals are everything!
4. Work out with a friend. I’m the type of girl who goes in to the gym to do work and I often keep to myself in the middle of my workout. It’s MY time and I love that time I have with just me, my mind and the weights. It’s like this place no one can touch me. But something that I’ve been trying lately is working out with a friend. I’M TELLING YOU, this is a game changer. Workout with a friend and push each other. This may be trial and error as there are some talkative friends that aren’t on the same playing field as you with their goals but you just have to keep trying until you find that person that will push you and vice versa. When you want to throw the towel in on your session, she lifts you up and tells you to finish it with her. Game changer.
5. Self talk. First things first, you have to give yourself permission to be in a slump. It’s life, it’s going to happen. Nothing is ever 100%. When you look over and see that girl and think how perfect everything looks, try to remember you’re looking at a small highlight reel of the whole movie. Nothing is perfect all the time, and what is perfect anyways!? Imperfections are where the good stuff is at. It’s in slumps like this that you reach out and find an article like this and LEARN and GROW because of the need to find the other side. So you really have your slump to thank for the new motivation. So after giving yourself permission to just be, start talking to yourself like you are the Queen of your World, because you are, and treat yourself like one. You can do anything. There is no mustering, there is only conquering. You are beautiful, you are confident, you are YOU. Positive self talk helps a great deal in feeling good about your life and mostly, about yourself.
Thank you for reading my story and advice on motivation. I hope you’ll remember to never give up on what you need to do and to continue to fierce forward in your life. I welcome you to my Community at Fierce Forward!
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So, you’ve read Ashley’s “fierce” tips for staying motivated… what keeps you motivated?