How to Live Up to Your Inspirational Tumblr

    In order to stick to your goals — anything from weight loss to keeping your room clean — you need, aside from cleverly worded quotes, a careful evaluation of why you want to achieve that goal, a reasonable and concrete reward system and a clear, realistic image in your mind of your end results.

    Say you want to chisel out a set of rock-hard abs for yourself by the time San Diego weather gets itself together and beach season rolls around. This is just one possibility, for the sake of having an example — you can easily apply this theory to anything you want to achieve, bodyrelated or not. The point is that you come out of it with a sense of accomplishment that, whether or not it has to do with your reflection in the mirror, will do wonders for your sense of self — and that’s the most important part of your well-being.

    Applying this methodology to the “rock-hard abs” goal, the first step is the careful evaluation. Get Freudian. Sit back on a reclined couch and think: Why do I want to do this? Is this for you, or for your ex? For you, or for your mother? Neither of those answers is necessarily good or bad, but get familiar with what’s driving you so you have a clearer grasp of what it is you want to come out of this goal. In our example, feeling confident in a bathing suit will make summer at the beach much more enjoyable.

    Next, create a reasonable and concrete reward system. After a week of P90X, I’ll buy a new pair of sneakers. After a month of everyday workouts, I’ll treat myself to a burrito. Also remember to turn back to the same discoveries you made during your self-psychoanalysis. When faced with a potential weakness, like an Arrested Development marathon during your workout time or the temptation to throw your shirt on the ground instead of hanging it up, turn back to your original motivation and think: Do I want this five minutes of laziness more, or do I want to achieve this accomplishment more? If you want it badly enough, reminding yourself about it should provide the strength you need to employ self-control.

    Throughout this entire process, have a clear image or idea of what you want to achieve. Think of yourself looking smashing in a party dress, feeling proud of your great-looking living space when your parents visit, or imagine yourself in control of your anxiety and finally at peace. If there’s ever a doubt that you can’t achieve something, an obstacle I’ve run into countless times in my own endeavors, I’m not here to tell you that, “you can do anything you put your mind to.” That’s a blatant lie, repeated by people who don’t mind imposing their own sense of warped reality on you. You might have to stop sometimes for a re-evaluation. If your body or mind is just physically incapable of doing something, you’re only doing a disservice to yourself by pursuing it. And that wisdom, I assure you, is more than just fodder.

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