Hey man, I was out with my sweetheart yesterday. We ran some errands, then sat for a coffee and a chat and we briefly got on the topic of motivation…
Motivation is something I’ve struggled with, everyone has at times, points in their lives, or for their entire lives. Everyone struggles with it because it’s an emotion, and something that’s incredibly useless to depend on when you’re trying to achieve something.
That said, we clearly have more energy, do better work, and get more done when we’re motivated to do so.
So, while motivation will always come and go, we’ll have good times, bad times, ups and downs, but who we are, how we live, and what we do cannot ebb and flow like a feeling does.
How do we at least have more motivation, and not less?
My lady, she’s a smart one…
She started talking about options…
Humans have been here for a while, whether it’s 20,000 years or 100,000 or whatever the latest idea of our length of existence is, we’ve been here longer than our current society and societal structures have been around.
…A LOT LONGER.
That is, we’ve been hunters and gatherers, farmers and warriors, for far longer than we’ve been able to CHOOSE who we are or what we should do with our lives.
When we would once wake up and go hunt, we can now wake up and think about what we should do.
Or, we finish high school and then we can go to college or enter the workforce, and the workforce is filled with thousands of different options, as is college – the dumb courses that now exist in college are endless, but in their eyes are just as valuable as business or a trade or an actual skill, it’s ridiculous.
Options are not always a good thing – actually, they’re often bad. Our brains haven’t evolved to suit this option-filled society.
We’re not bred to have to choose what to wear, and then what to eat, and then what course to take with our lives, and then think about whether or not we’ve taken the right course because there are so many other options out there to take.
Our DNA is still in ‘wake up and hunt’ mode.
And therein lies an answer to motivation.
When you have no option, you do. When you have many options, you think about what to do.
Recently – and I talk about this at length in The Lost Art of Discipline Audiobook that you can get here for $2.95 – I’ve been focusing on removing options and creating clarity in my days and in my life.
The thing about our society today is that we see the options that are out there as something better than where we currently are, ignoring the good in where we are, and the work that must be done where we are.
So, I’m playing the long game with the business, but focusing exclusively on the tasks at hand.
At every day’s end I plan tomorrow.
At every week’s end I plan the week, and I stick to it.
I do not think about what I have to do because I’ve already laid it out.
I’m not doing new ventures. I’m not trying a bunch of new things. I’m building Average 2 Alpha. I’m finishing the next book, and then I’m starting the next one after that.
I’m producing content.
I have my writing days for articles and my filming days and my podcast days.
And I’m motivated.
I’m not motivated because there’s something deep inside me that wasn’t there when I wasn’t motivated.
I’m motivated because I have a clear idea of what I’m doing, why I’m doing it, who I’m doing it for, and I’m ignoring the endless sea of options in the run of a day, and in the grand scheme.
Listen, we’re men. We think about things like legacy.
Well, legacies aren’t built by acting like children, by chasing every single thing that comes across our paths.
Legacies are built on the back of persistence, and persistence demands clarity most of all.
Do what you do. Do it well. Do it every day.
Forget, for a second, about being motivated, and simply aim to be clear about who you are and what you’re here to do.
Set your sights on something, and get after it.