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Motivation vs. Inspiration

Updated: October 30, 2012

I used to have a board on Pinterest entitled Motivation. After some deep thought, I found that I needed to change the title of that board to Inspiration.

Inspiration can come from external sources, but motivation can only come from the inside ourselves.

Motivation vs. Inspiration

Think about these questions:

  • Why do you do morning cardio every day?
  • Why do you bring your food with you to the movie theater instead of indulging in popcorn?
  • Why do you give 100% in the gym when you train?
  • Why do you add one more rep to your sets?

You don’t do these things for someone else; you do them for yourself. No one else is motivating you to do work hard and live a fit lifestyle. You’re motivating yourself into action!

Other people can inspire you. For example, looking at a picture of a fit woman can inspire you to motivate yourself to get on the treadmill every day. Reading a quote like, “If you want something you’ve never had, then you’ve got to do something you’ve never done,” can provide the inspiration you need to motivate yourself to get out of bed at 6 am and hit the gym.

When we rely on others to motivate our behavior, we fail. External sources can only provide a limited amount of assistance or support – the rest is up to YOU! You are the only one responsible for bringing your cooler of prepared food with you to work. You are the only one responsible for pushing through a difficult workout. A trainer, coach, friend, or parent can only do so much. Allow yourself to be inspired, and then use that inspiration to motivate your own actions.

What are some ways you can be inspired?

Think of some things that inspire you. Perhaps looking at images of your favorite fitness celebrity inspires you. Or maybe reading quotes about internal strength and determination, and overcoming obstacles inspires you. Maybe watching someone train hard in the gym, or watching a friend pack her food every day inspires you.

Take that inspiration and use it to create self-motivation to achieve your goals.

What are some ways you can motivate yourself?

In order to motivate yourself, you need to keep your goals in the forefront of your mind. Think about these questions, write down your answers, and look at them every day:

  • What am I trying to achieve?
  • What is my time frame?
  • What actions do I need to take to reach my goal?

When you’re faced with a decision, think of your goal, think of the things that inspire you, reach deep inside yourself, and take action. Get inspired, find your inner motivation, and you can achieve great things!

Header Photo from Adobe Stock

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