External or Internal?

Hey hey hey….it’s Monday! Everyone’s favorite day of the the week amirite? 

I know, I know, it’s hard to get back into the swing of things after a (hopefully) fun-filled weekend. It can be especially hard to find that Monday Mojo if the weekend included a holiday or special occasion , which honestly seems like almost every weekend lately. May through August is graduations, weddings, showers, birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Proms, Triple Crown Horse Racing, Picnics, Barbecues, Pool Parties, Beach Parties, Garden Parties….ay yi yi! 

Yesterday was Mother’s Day here in the USofA and while my day wasn’t jam-packed with frivolities it was still busy, and included attending a choral concert (sweetie’s Mom sings in a local chorale), and then dinner out with the family. This morning I got to sleep in to make up for all the busyness yesterday. But then I found it hard to get myself motivated to do much…how is that possible? I’ll admit I still don’t understand how getting a little more sleep makes me feel even more tired and less motivated but it certainly seems to. 

One thing I’ve learned is that when I’m feeling like a slug if I can schedule ONE thing during the day to look forward to, it really helps me get going. If I have even something small or simple laying ahead later that day, then I feel more motivated to get myself started on the other tasks I’m trying to avoid. My motivation in this case is purely external. 

Internal motivation is very important, and we need to be able to tap into in order to accomplish big goals, jump our personal hurdles, and keep going when things get tough. But external motivation is just as valid. Yes, it’s good to do things for the simple reason that they are the right  things to do, whether that refers to our health, our work, or our daily interactions with others. But there’s no shame in using an external reward (whether it’s a physical reward like a new pair of shoes, or an experiential reward like seeing a show) to get us moving in the correct direction. 

So that’s where I am today. It seemed to take me for.ev.er. to get myself going today and start ticking my boxes, but I promised myself a little reward if I get them all done before 5pm. And if I tick all my boxes all week, I’ll get an even nicer reward, in addition to the feeling of accomplishment that comes along with actually meeting my goals. And then my feelings of accomplishment will continue to motivate me to keep going. See how this works? 

So the tl;dr version is: It’s okay to use an external motivator to get yourself started in the right direction. You’re not always going to be filled with passion and motivation every second of every day. #MondayMotivation can mean a new lipstick just as well as an overflowing internal sense of commitment and passion to a particular project. Either and both are just fine. 

So with that said, I’m going to go keep ticking my boxes…and hopefully collect my little self-prescribed motivating reward. 

What gets you going on a slow day? Share below … maybe you’ll inspire someone! 

Thanks for reading today—