People attending clinical therapy often present themselves with what they think is a lack of motivation. When you look at these people, in general, they look fine. When you ask them about what they are doing, that too seems to be fine. They are out there in the world doing things, but to them, it seems that they aren’t doing enough. They report that they are very slow to get moving in the morning. They may say they feel tired all the time and reluctant to do even the simplest of things. They are still operating, but it feels like they are dragging a chain.
This group of people usually live on a diet of coffee and sugar, depending on the level that they have reached. The higher the level, the more coffee is required. Some people will also have an interesting relationship with chocolate. These are all high energy foods that act as an instant kick to the system. Unfortunately, these products also have a rather negative effect on long-term energy production, health and vitality.
There is another group of individuals who find it hard to even get out of bed. This group of people aren’t at all functional. The best that they can achieve is to sit and watch TV and eat an assortment of high carbs and fatty foods. This has been called chronic fatigue syndrome, or the point at which the energy production system just collapses. Yes, this all sounds pretty bleak, but that’s what happens. The process has been recorded for thousands of years in Chinese medicine. The only difference is 1,000 years ago this condition was very rare, only to be found in active military personnel or scholars. The general population rarely had an issue. Today, however, the vast majority of the population are placed under immense mental stress that is the foundation of this condition.
The information and material you can read or watch on motivation, to a large extent, says get clear on your goal and go for it. The content will say things like just keep going. Or the losers quit early, the winners just keep going until they win. Or do more, get more organised, get more focused. Motivation is about having a goal so large that they compel you to succeed. This is a very masculine way of motivating which to a large extent has origins in the military. I have one issue with this approach or methodology – there is a severe lack of ecology. In a military scenario after the battle, the soldiers were all broken and totally burnt out. They are disposed of like last night’s leftovers. We, as a society, have been sold this process from our education systems and corporates for decades. In Japan at this point, people, mainly males, are working themselves to death in their mid-thirties. The result of all of this is, as a society, we will be dying younger of exhaustion based issues.
So how do we get motivated without killing ourselves? The answer is so simple but in this society, it is so challenging because we have all been brainwashed into believing that the sickness is normal. The changing of a person’s core values is the answer. Not just the values themselves but the complex associations that go with them (this is a Master Practitioner of NLP process). The amazing thing is when values are aligned with health in mind, then productivity, health, wealth and happiness all dramatically increase.
You might like to think of this through the fable of the hare and the tortoise. Life is much more like a marathon. If you attempt to sprint the entire way you will collapse very quickly and never finish the race. The process of running a marathon and life itself can also be thought of as similar to having a bucket of sand. The objective is to spoon out the sand as you run along. If you run out of the sand before the end of the race, you have lost. If you finish the race with half a bucket of sand left, then you miss out on doing all sorts of great things.
So how do we do motivation from this? Exhaustion is the biggest killer of motivation there is. The second killer of motivation is being overwhelmed. To be motivated we require a clear goal that is challenging but not daunting. The ability to be able to break down the task into small bite-size bits or manageable tasks that can be achieved daily. A single step in the right direction daily is better than a sprint once a month.
The story of the woodcutters
Two woodcutters enter the forest to cut wood. The first woodcutter rises early and is straight into cutting with gusto. The second woodcutter rises, starts a fire, boils the water for tea and eats a hearty breakfast and then begins to cut. By mid-morning, the first woodcutter’s pile is significantly larger than the second. By lunch, the first woodcutter continues, not stopping to eat. The second woodcutter stops puts on the kettle for tea, eats his lunch and then returns to the woods. By the end of the day, the two woodcutters return to camp. To the dismay of the first woodcutter, the second woodcutter’s pile of timber is significantly larger. The first woodcutter starts to complain, how is this possible? I started earlier, I didn’t stop for lunch, I worked harder all day and yet your pile is higher. The second woodcutter looking puzzled says, I really don’t know why that is the case. As I woke, I made the fire and drank my tea and took the time to sharpen my axe. At lunch, as the water was heating I just sat rested and sharpened my axe. At afternoon tea I sat and sharpened my axe.
Feeding yourself and sharpening your axe – whatever that happens to be – is the answer to motivation. Removing the hare mentality can be achieved quickly through hypnosis and NLP. I would highly recommend it. It creates an entirely different respect for life and a quality of life that is missing in today’s society.