The alarm clock buzzes like a fire truck just pulled up beside your bed. You startle out of a sound sleep tucked under snuggly covers in a cold bedroom. Time for a rational discussion with yourself . . .

Yeah, right.

You might search for a few logical reasons to get up but you have a bail out button just waiting. The blessed snooze begins.

The fact is, you don’t feel like getting up. Unless you have prepared yourself before you go to bed (or unless you have a puppy in her crate nearby who knows what the alarm means), your feelings will win.

You Can’t Wait Until You Feel Like It

After the alarm rings is a terrible time to find your motivation. It’s like finding reasons to diet in an ice cream shop. Or reasons to study at the movies.

When we look to feelings for motivation, we make our entire lives subject to our feelings. And feelings are terrible leaders. Feelings make bad decisions.

The trick is to decide on your best course of action and begin. Magically, your feelings will follow!

You will find your motivation along the way. The feeling part of your brain will get the idea and find reasons to tag along.

Feelings Are Like Puppies

I never put my puppy in charge. I never let my puppy decide where we are going to go. I never let her make the big decisions.

But what she lacks in wisdom, she makes up in enthusiasm. Once she figures out where I’m headed, she runs to the end of her leash and stays there. She is excited about every smell and dog and person and tree and fire hydrant.

She makes me happy. She gets me going. But she’s not a great career consultant. I wouldn’t let her choose a restaurant. We’d eat dinner in a garbage can.

Lead Your Feelings

Great writers will tell you they find their book somewhere in chapter two or three. Suddenly, the inspiration hits, the story gels, the characters become real and the book takes on a life of its own.

No matter what the outline says, they discover the story somewhere in the process. But to get there, they have to start writing.

This is the way your brain works. It finds the energy it needs along the way. You create motivation by motion.

So, make your best decision and get started. You discover the story of your life by doing, not by feeling.


Photo by shelbyasteward via Flickr