Motivation Precedes Habit Change

I’ve written about habit change on this blog before. Then today I came across this quote from Jim Rohn:

“Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.”

It got me thinking more deeply about habit change. Of course, it goes without saying that if you want to change your habits, you have to know which habits need to be altered. But it goes deeper than just an awareness of the need to change. You actually have to be motivated to act.

SOS Co-Founder, Bill Moyer, often reminds our clients that insight precedes change. What does that really mean? At what point does the insight we have create a motive to action? The answer to this question is different for each of us.

Some of us are motivated by the benefits of habit change, while others will be more motivated by the losses to be avoided. When we lead our clients through the goal setting process, we have them identify the benefits to be gained and losses to be avoided for each goal. Ultimately, this process helps us to determine the WHY. Why is this goal important to me? Why am I committed to achieving it?

In Zig Ziglar’s new book Born to Win, he writes, “If you are unable to answer the ‘why you want something’ question in one simple sentence, it probably isn’t a true desire of yours.”

In order to change, we need a clear motive to action. That motivation comes from the why. You will gain clarity about the reason you want and/or need to change by answering the WHY question. If you can’t answer it, you’re not ready to change.

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