Walking to work I pass a load of rubble. It used to be a factory, but a few years ago it got levelled. Now that’s all I see; rubble.
But someone saw more than just rubble.
They saw a mum in her kitchen, preparing a family meal.
They saw a snug office where dad could research his family history.
They saw a living room with a big fireplace where granddad could share stories with the kids.
Perhaps most of all, they saw a housing estate that would make them a load of money.
Someone had a vision for this piece of land – they saw that it could be more than just rubble. That vision of what could be no doubt inspired them to take action.
Without the vision there would be no reason to take action. Any work that took place would be without purpose. And nothing feels more like hard work than labour without purpose.
The building project started ages ago. At times it seemed like nothing was happening. The project hit various plateaus.
But last month, things gradually started moving. Diggers started digging. Workmen turned up on site. And the project started moving forward.
Someone had been continually chipping away. So that when the time was right, when the economy tipped back in the right direction, when they had the resources they were good to go.
While it’s still very much a work in progress, the plan allows them to stay focused on what they were working towards. And having a clear picture of the finished project makes the work meaningful beyond the day to day grind.
When working on our own rubble it can be a struggle to get started. And often when we do various set backs and challenges can make it hard to progress.
We plateau. We don’t see any changes, even though we’re putting in the work. And that in itself can be hugely de-motivating. Enough to make us question whether it’s worth the effort.
Dips in motivation are part of the process of achieving anything worthwhile. So it’s less a case of how do we stay motivated, and more about what to do when motivation takes a dive.
This is where I’ve found revisiting the bigger picture helpful. Asking why you decided to exercise, or make better food choices in the first place.
What’s the end result you’re striving for? And perhaps more importantly, what’s going to be better about your life when you’ve reached your goal?
If you’re struggling to get motivated to exercise, or to lead a healthier lifestyle maybe you’ve just forgotten your purpose.
When you know why it’s important to you – the big picture – then it becomes a little easier to stick with the plan. Whether you want to to be fit enough to keep up with your kids, or if to simply exercise to stay feeling good in your favourite clothes.
In any case, it’s your rubble. And you’ve already done some cool stuff with it. Question is do you want to maintain, or shall we take it to the next level?