Coral Gables Counseling Center - Wednesday, September 15, 2021
By Gabriela Reyes, MFT

Motivation is Bullsh*t.

Bold statement, I know, but stay with me for a second.

Telling ourselves that the reason for not doing things is lack of motivation, will keep us stuck in the same spot endlessly.

To feel motivated, we need to take action.

chair with sign

We wait to take action until we are motivated, but we are only motivated once we take action. See the problem here? If we can move away from the idea that motivation is what we need to move forward, we are potentially one decision away from a different life.

At some point, we all bought into this lie that we need to wait until we feel ready or motivated to make a change. We use motivation as an excuse for why we do not work on our marriage, go to the gym, or put the idea of a new business into motion. This lie has made us believe at some point, we will magically have the courage, confidence, and motivation to do the thing.

Our brains are designed to protect us from anything scary, difficult, or unknown.  The Spotlight Effect is our brain’s way of magnifying the potential risk to try to keep us from getting hurt. In other words, it puts a giant spotlight on anything risky to scare us out of it. To make significant changes in our lives, we may have to do things that are scary, difficult, and unknown.

We spend our lives forming habits, both good and bad. If we are not habituated to being proactive and doing things that are good for us, we’ll probably feel pretty unmotivated and even fearful. This is not part of who we are but instead what we are accustomed to.

Fortunately, with some effort and action, we can get accustomed to something different. We can form new habits that change our lives.

Remind yourself that fear is not debilitating.

Remind yourself that action leads to motivation, not the other way around.

Then, do the thing anyway.


“The best things in life are on the other side of fear.” – Will SmithBallons