What gets you out of bed every day? Is it your job? Maybe your significant other or kids? Maybe you have a routine to follow or plans with a friend that day. Whatever it is, it's different for everybody. And it usually varies from day to day.
I present this question because I want to encourage you to really think about why you keep waking up and doing this thing we call life every day. Sometimes we can get so stuck in our routine or commitments that we forget the reason why we're doing these things anyway. I hope this short blog encourages you to be present and intentional about your time, energy, and the choices you make this upcoming week.
I like to be clear on the meanings of words before throwing them around so let's start with the basics. Motivation is defined as "the reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way." While Discipline is defined as "the practice of training people to obey rules or a code of behavior"
When you wake up and don't want to workout / move your body, but still choose to do so because you know it's good for your physical and mental health - that's discipline. You're not doing it because you WANT to, but because you know the long-term benefits outweigh the temporary feeling of not wanting to do something.
Motivation on the other hand, can be described as the general desire or willingness of someone to do something. An example of this would be seeing the positive results of regularly exercising like having more energy, feeling less anxious and foggy, and gaining more muscle.
You can also be motivated by negative things- not wanting to be in pain or struggling with anxiety can both be motivators for people to start exercising regularly. As can getting hurt and wanting to get stronger and/or rebuild muscle.
So which is better? Motivation or Discipline... I personally think they go hand in hand.
I've found "success" (in the loosest term) by having both present in my daily life. In addition to being intentional about the decisions I'm making -"why am I going here, why am I buying this, why am I talking to that person, why am I watching this show, why am I packing this bowl right now" are all things I try to be conscious of throughout the day.
You can't go wrong by asking yourself, how is this helping me grow in one way or another? And growth should always be the goal because if you're not going forward, you're going backward.
That doesn't mean you have to work yourself silly (mentally or physically). In fact, focusing too much on moving forward often keeps you stuck where you're at or worse, going backward. Growth and healing happen when you're truly present with yourself and your surroundings on a regular basis and start appreciating the good moments for what they are as well as the and ones because they are all fleeting.
This doesn't mean pretending like everything is perfect when something bad happens or when you're upset / struggling, but rather trusting that everything "bad" can be turned into something good if you let it.
To do this, try to appreciate the season of life you're in while working on being the best version of yourself every day and everything else will slowly but surely follow. Find ways to motivate yourself - both big and small - and be disciplined so that when the hard days come up, you'll be equipped to handle them.