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The ABC's of motivation: understand

Friday, October 26, 2012

Those a-hah moments? I believe they are related to the sudden realization that we understand what's happening!

According to my little Webster's, it's all about "getting it". "1 to get or perceive the meaning of; know or grasp what is meant by; comprehend [to understand a question]"

I was reading a wonderful featured blog this morning (LDRichel's from Thursday), and just have to share the link:

In it you can see that my friend "gets it". It's NOT about the scale. Exercise / training / eventing for her has become her stress management system. As it has for me. When did this transformation take place in our minds? I don't know. But I'm glad that it has.

And now I "get it" about motivation, too. It's not magic. It *is* miracle. But a natural one.

Here's to a fresh new day, full of understanding and motivation. Because LIFE is good. And each one of us, dear Spark friends, is worth it.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CANDOSUE52 10/26/2012 7:05PM


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KARIDIAN1 10/26/2012 5:26PM


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WATERMELLEN 10/26/2012 2:35PM

    Understanding is key: it's the launch pad standing under the motivation rocket!! emoticon

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WORLDSERIES11 10/26/2012 11:13AM

    emoticon emoticon

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LINDAKAY228 10/26/2012 10:56AM

    Great blog and so true! And exercise is so much more for other reasons now for me too, and not just weight loss.

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LESLIELENORE 10/26/2012 10:12AM


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MSLZZY 10/26/2012 10:08AM

    Right on the money! Understanding is one
of the key components to this and any other
program. We are ALL worth it. Thanks for
sharing. HUGS!

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1CRAZYDOG 10/26/2012 10:05AM

    That's it exactly! Exercise is my way of de-stressing! It is MY ME TIME, because if I don't understand ME then who will??

EXCELLENT blog, Barb, and thank you for sharing the link. HUGS!

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DLDMIL 10/26/2012 9:38AM

    emoticon emoticon

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SLENDERELLA61 10/26/2012 8:38AM

    I get your blog!! Another good one, Barb. So glad you not only get motivation, you express it very well and help all of us increase our motivation to live healthy!! Have another happy, healthy day!! -Marsha

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DNRAE1 10/26/2012 7:37AM

    Life IS Good! Thank you for another great blog! Enjoy your day. emoticon

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STEADFASTNSEE 10/26/2012 7:16AM

  "Exercise / training / eventing for her has become her stress management system." I like that. I NEED that! Thanks!!

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NEW-CAZ 10/26/2012 7:11AM

    Great blog Barb! emoticon

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LEANJEAN6 10/26/2012 7:05AM

    Great blog--We ARE worth it_____Spark on--Lynda emoticon

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DMEYER4 10/26/2012 6:54AM

  great blog and so true. thank you

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The ABC's of motivation: tend

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Today's word is "tend". As in tend to your motivation.

My little Webster's gives this sense of the word: "1 to take care of; minister to; watch over; look after; attend to [to tend plants or animals, to tend the sick]" It keeps getting better, "2 to be in charge of or at work at; manage or operate [to tend a store]"

I noted under "e" that my motivation was sometimes elusive. Thus the need to "tend" it, to be constantly paying attention to both my actions (the healthy behaviors that support a healthy lifestyle) and to my willingness to take them (motivation).

First comes willingness. Then comes ability. My tending to the willingness involves among other things my blogging. I've often said these are my morning pep talks to myself. But they also serve as a monitor on my motivation, thoughts and feelings. For without motivation, there is no action.

And LIFE is all about action. Life is precious, short, and good. Live it fully. Spark on!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NIKKICOLE83 10/25/2012 11:22PM

    I like "tend". Its so easy to get stuck in the rut of working out and dieting. A month or so ago I was so stuck that I forgot what food tasted like. I was afraid to eat tasty food out of fear that I would overeat so I only ate what my body needed. I was also exercising like crazy. I burned myself out. I know have to remember to "tend" to my spiritual, emotional and mental self so that I don't forget why I am doing this.

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KARIDIAN1 10/25/2012 10:44PM

    Still Sparking!

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WATERMELLEN 10/25/2012 8:33PM

    Tending . . . yeah. We have to tend to our motivation . . . it's a "tender" little shoot that requires attention!!

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MSLZZY 10/25/2012 10:48AM

    A peptalk that we can all make use of. Thanks for
sharing. HUGS!

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LINDAKAY228 10/25/2012 10:40AM

    This is such a great series you are doing with the alphabet. It's all really given me things to think about. A garden won't grow if it's not tended, and we won't be the best we can be if we don't tend ourselves.

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LESLIELENORE 10/25/2012 10:39AM

    Love your pep talks!

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NEW-CAZ 10/25/2012 9:30AM

    emoticon love your blogs Barb

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1CRAZYDOG 10/25/2012 9:03AM


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DLDMIL 10/25/2012 8:44AM

    WooHoo another great blog, thank you for your inspirational pep talks.

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DNRAE1 10/25/2012 7:39AM

    Keep on tending your garden of motivations....yes, plural, because different things motivate us at different times! emoticon

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The ABC's of motivation: sleep

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Everybody knows what sleep is. To give the Webster's version, "1 a) a natural, regularly recurring condition of rest for the body and mind, during which the eyes are usually closed and there is little or no conscious thought or voluntary movement, but there is intermittent dreaming".

Even the definition sounds inviting, doesn't it? What does sleep have to do with motivation, though?

I am fond of saying there isn't much that a good night's sleep doesn't make better. I'm a big believer. If motivation is flagging, getting a good rest can spruce it back up.

Sleep is so important that Sparkpeople even has a "better sleep challenge" team. But long before Sparkpeople was a twinkle in Chris Downie's mind's eye, back when this old lady in training was in high school... I discovered during one of my more foolish attempts at weight loss that I could live with very little food, or with very little sleep... but not without both at the same time!

So... rest well, fellow Sparkers... for this enables us all to Spark on... with a LIFE that is good! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

_LINDA 10/24/2012 11:21PM

    I so wish I could discover the key to a good night's sleep. Its eluded me so long I can't even remember when my insomnia first started :(( I have no doubt that was the reason why it took me two years to lose my weight in spite of doing all the right things most of the time.. I can only imagine the energy I would have if I could score even seven hours sleep in a day instead of 2-3! Sleep is really vital for healing, rejuvenating, thinking through problems (the brain remains active during sleep and is thought to work out problems and consolidate memories at this time)
Can't go through life like a zombie that is for sure, it doesn't work well :P

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DALID414 10/24/2012 10:03PM

    How apropos! My body needed sleep today and instead of fighting it I went along with it.

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KARIDIAN1 10/24/2012 9:02PM

    Like an idiot I was up until 2 am last night trying to get renewals processed for the gun club. Just wanted to get the pile done and in the mail.

At least I had today off and was able to sleep in later. That is heaven!

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WATERMELLEN 10/24/2012 7:45PM

    Sleep matters but isn't always compliant for me. And when I cannot sleep it helps me to remember that . . . I'll probably sleep tomorrow night. And also that "polyphasic sleeping" (waking up during the night, going back to sleep) is apparently "normal" for a lot of people.

When I go a long time without enough sleep no question: the motivation to stick to the healthy exercise and nutrition does flag!!

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EBEAMS 10/24/2012 6:19PM

    Ahhh ... the ever elusive Zzzzz's ... I've never been a "good" sleeper and I'm sure that factors into my problems sleeping now. I know from researching stress stuff that sleep is vital ... essential to lots of things that the body needs to do while the "lights are out", so to speak. Maybe someday ... maybe ...

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1CRAZYDOG 10/24/2012 2:52PM

    emoticon Great blog! working on the sleep!

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LINDAKAY228 10/24/2012 1:54PM

    I definitely have to have my sleep!

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IRONBLOSSOM 10/24/2012 1:32PM

    Oh yes, if I don't sleep enough I tend to eat everything in sight!

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DLDMIL 10/24/2012 1:29PM

    I definetly have more energy after a good night, restful sleep. emoticon

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LEANJEAN6 10/24/2012 12:34PM

    You need lotza sleep Lynda

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LESLIELENORE 10/24/2012 10:35AM

    I lose my motivation when I am tired. Getting enough sleep is key to my fitness plan.

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SLENDERELLA61 10/24/2012 8:28AM

    You were very precocious to discover this principle so early. I've also found at very busy times in my life to consciously reward myself with extra sleep (sometimes a nap) rather than food is very effective. Thanks for another good blog, Barb. It is a truth I seem to have to rediscover every couple years!! Maybe this time it will stick. -Marsha

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KRISZTA11 10/24/2012 8:02AM

    Very true!
Whenever my eating habits or mood go bad,
I always discover I was not getting enough sleep.
Often if is the root cause, sometime it is only collateral damage...
Going to bed on time always helps anyway : )

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DNRAE1 10/24/2012 7:11AM

    I've been sleeping 8-9 hours a night since watching dear GD (2 year old) for a week. Wow, now I know what a good sleep is!!! emoticon

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NEW-CAZ 10/24/2012 7:00AM

    Barb you are spot on the money, no sleep means a muggy and foggy brain and a not too willing body either for me.

Last night was a c*ap night again yet I managed a walk and core workout and do not regret doing either, in fact it's helped and I'm hoping it'll mean I'll sleep tonight!'
Have a great day emoticon

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MSLZZY 10/24/2012 6:52AM

    Sleep is essential, no matter what we think.
Thanks for the reminder. HUGS!

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DEBRITA01 10/24/2012 6:40AM

    Sleep was never a problem for me until this current stage of my life. Knowing how important it is for my health, I've set sleep goals. Last night? emoticon and I'm ready for this day! emoticon

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AQUAGIRL08 10/24/2012 6:05AM

    You are so right! Sometimes when you don't get enough sleep, you are hungrier too. A good night's rest is a must!

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TRYINGHARD54 10/24/2012 5:59AM

    Wish i got more sleep

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The ABC's of motivation: remember

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Finding motivation slipping? Then the word for today might be of service.

Today's word is remember. According to Webster's, one sense of the word is "3 to bear in mind; keep in the memory; be careful not to forget 4 to keep (a person) in mind with some feeling, as of pleasure, gratitude, etc."

The person I want to focus on keeping in mind, in considering motivation is oneself! And being careful not to forget? That this person is worthy of taking care of, of proper nutrients, of sufficient activity, and rest.

If struggling, it is well to remember what it felt like to skate along in the sunshine of grace when it seemed easy to care for ourselves! Wanting to get that feeling back is strong motivation to take care / make a good decision... one more time... to keep putting one foot in front of the other on the path to healthy living.

Because living is a good thing. Living well and healthy and happy... the best.

Spark on! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KARIDIAN1 10/24/2012 9:11PM

    Thanks for the reminder. My motivation has slipped several notches the past few months. And the scale shows it. Pounds gained back. emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 10/24/2012 7:42PM

    Remembering is really key. Remembering to check the calorie count on the mini cinnamon bun, and on the two bite chocolate brownie -- yeah. And opting for the fat free sugar free yogourt (35 calories) instead!!

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NIKKICOLE83 10/23/2012 10:27PM

    Whenever I feel discouraged, I remember how empty I felt and sad I was when I was nearly 300 pounds. That usually snaps me into it.

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MSLZZY 10/23/2012 10:14PM

    You share all your wisdom so graciously!
Thanks for sharing. HUGS!

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NEW-CAZ 10/23/2012 12:40PM

    Wise words Barb and another outstanding blog!
So often we forget to keep the balance in our busy lives, rest is equally important!

Hope you're having a good day hun emoticon

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1CRAZYDOG 10/23/2012 12:07PM

    Your last sentence says it all . . . and is my motivation; to live well and happy!


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LESLIELENORE 10/23/2012 10:01AM

    I need to remember to rest more!

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SLENDERELLA61 10/23/2012 9:49AM

    Another great blog, Barb! Yes. Remembering both times I suffered from lack of taking care of myself and times I enjoyed because I have taken care of myself are both motivating!!

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LINDAKAY228 10/23/2012 9:44AM

    If we don't spend a little time remember both how good it felt to do something new or special, and how it felt to be where we used to be before getting healthy, we forget and it's easy to slip back into old habits.

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_LINDA 10/23/2012 9:37AM

    This can work in reverse too -remembering what it was like to be overweight, obese, tired, plodding and to never wanting to go back there ever again as being fit gives you lightness on your aching feet and a sense of strength and power and that feeling you can do anything you set your mind to. Yes. Remembering indeed.
Thanks for thoughts!

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 10/23/2012 8:49AM

    Great words of inspiration.

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DLDMIL 10/23/2012 8:34AM

    emoticon emoticon

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STEADFASTNSEE 10/23/2012 7:53AM

  Thank you for helping me to "remember" this! HUGS

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DNRAE1 10/23/2012 7:40AM

    Truth - "keep putting one foot in front of the other on the path to healthy living." Ups and downs happen, but REMEMBERING to keep on plugging away will get us through any downs! Thank you for making me think each morning. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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The ABC's of motivation: quality and quantity

Monday, October 22, 2012

Yep, we get two words today.

According to my trusty Webster's the sense of quality I want to highlight is "3 the degree of excellence which a thing possesses 4 excellence; superiority ". And for quantity, I'm choosing the simple "1 an amount; portion".

Measuring motivation is a tricky thing, it being "elusive" as I noted in my "e" entry. Quantity: how much motivation is enough? And quality: is one kind of motivation superior to another?

I think I pretty much covered that quality doesn't matter to anyone but yourself in the "personal" entry yesterday. That takes care of judging it against someone else's stated motivation. However, within ourselves, do not some motivations have a higher strength, or quality in keeping us going?

So if motivation seems to be flagging, it bears a fresh look. Matter of fact, one of the questions my JC consultant asks each week is "what's motivating you this week?" What a great thing to do... examine what's powering our efforts... for quality and quantity.

As for "how much is enough"... that one's truly simple: however much it takes. If it's just a little nudge, but it helps me make a better decision, it is enough. If I'm having a tough day, it might take more... thus the examination for the quality of my motivation for the day is more important.

So... just for today: what is motivating you? Is it important to you? And is it enough?

Remember what you really want today... and may you have a healthy, well-lived one! Because today is all we really have. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WATERMELLEN 10/22/2012 8:19PM

    The quantity of motivation is that amount I need to stick to it, today -- might be less than yesterday, more than tomorrow . . . all relative.

And ditto quality: sometimes the trivial desire to fit into my generous size 6s is enough, sometimes I really have to put the boots to myself (radiation: never AGAING!!). Just depends upon the day.

Two Q words: both quintessential to motivation, that's for sure!!

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KARIDIAN1 10/22/2012 4:35PM

    Snuck in tow words I see. For me, I want to be and stay as healthy as I can so I can enjoy my self in years to come and stay active.

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DLDMIL 10/22/2012 3:01PM

    My refusal to take meds for my oseoporosis is my motivation for now. Thank you for your continued thought provoking blogs. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LESLIELENORE 10/22/2012 12:15PM

    Today I am feeling pretty low energy, but my dog is motivating me, because he's got to go out... no matter how sluggish I feel!

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_LINDA 10/22/2012 11:11AM

    Today, I am trying to keep my calories low as I did no exercise this morning. I will of course speewalk to the club, and I expect a huge bridge game with at least 35 tables which will mean both rooms full and lots of running passing boards between teams. So it won't be a sit down day for sure :). Cold with flurries today, snow tomorrow, big motivation to keep moving and warm!!!

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1CRAZYDOG 10/22/2012 9:57AM

    Motivated and ready to go! Great blog.

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NEW-CAZ 10/22/2012 9:52AM

    wanting to be healthy/independant keeps me going emoticon

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ASHPATCH11 10/22/2012 9:47AM

    love this

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DNRAE1 10/22/2012 7:58AM

    I was so off base when I started reading your blog. You applied the words to motivation, and I had immediately applied them to nutrition! Excellent! and appropriate for both skills we need! Motivation: check out my blog about french fries, and you will see what is motivating me today!!! emoticon

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MSLZZY 10/22/2012 7:55AM

    Being the best I can be is what keeps me going.
Thanks for keeping me motivated. HUGS!

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