I read a very interesting book last week on motivation. It is called Drive by Daniel Pink. If I could summarise it in 20 words or less it would be this. “The intrinsic interest you have in a task will be more powerful than any extrinsic reward you may earn from doing it”
That was probably more than 20 words but it was close! The book was predominantly aimed at business and the management of people but the similarities to what we do with clients is striking. Yes it is good to aim for a 10 or 20 kg loss of body fat or to get a stronger back, but the real goal of adhering to a positive habit of an all round active lifestyle will only be achieved when you actually get to enjoy the process and not just the short term benefits.
Exercise needs to become ‘just something you do’ and the sooner you can get in to that mode the better. The other main tenet of the book was that, for a task to become intrinsically interesting a person must experience autonomy in doing it, usually a quest for mastery (which never ends) and finally a purpose bigger than themselves.
Well oddly enough the people we have found who become the most successfully healthy and committed are those who end up really ‘getting in to’ some type of exercise or activity, they develop an insatiable quest for mastery of that but also know that true mastery is not possible (therefore endless interest) and lastly they have a purpose which usually involves the encouragement of others.
So what is your drive then? For true success let’s go a bit deeper than the surface level response that most people give about wanting to ‘get fit and tone up a little’!