I’ve had a lot of mental breakthroughs in my day. See, I started adulthood out at a zero, mindset-wise. If it was possible to have a negative score, that’s what I would have had. Negative. Victimy. Impatient. Ungrateful. And completely unaware of all of that.

But there are a few that have stuck with me – big, paradigm-shifting, never-the-same-after-that moments. And the biggest one (and the one I still think about and use every.freakin.day. while talking about it nonstop with clients) came last summer.

You must run towards what you DO want (and stop running away from what you DON’T want).

Conceptually, this doesn’t seem hard to understand, right? But I promise you, once this really *clicked* I saw people (myself included) running away CONSTANTLY. Examples:

  • “I want to make $X”… Sounds like something a person would run toward, right? But more often than not, what people are really saying is, “I’m sick of being broke. I’m sick of my debt. I’m scared of not being able to afford my kids’ college tuition.”
  • “I want to lose {this} much weight”… Which usually means, “I’m sick of my pants being tight. If I don’t lose weight, I might have a heart attack like my dad. I just wish I wasn’t self-conscious while rolling in the sheets with my partner.”
  • “I want to be more consistent with [blogging, social media, networking, etc.]”… And usually as I dig, I find out people really mean this: “If I don’t do this stuff, it means I’m lazy. It looks like everyone else is doing this stuff and I don’t know what else to try. I’m won’t look ‘legit’ without that stuff.”

Now here’s the interesting thing: all three of those examples could result in good things. Go make money! Be a healthy weight! Show up for your business! ABSOLUTELY! But what’s the underlying motivation behind the things you say you want?

Is it because you’re actually excited about the thing you say you want, or are you scared of what happens if you don’t?

Are you being motivated by the fear, or have you created a vision of what you want, and you’re so freakin excited about it happening that you can’t imagine not doing it? Here’s how the exact same 3 examples could have a positive motivation:

  • “I want to make $X”… Because then I’ll be able to donate $10,000 anonymously to hurricane relief, I can hire a housekeeper so I can spend more time with my kids, and I can go on that trip to Churchill, Manitoba to see the polar bears like I’ve wanted to since I was 10.
  • “I want to lose {this} much weight”… This one probably needs to be morphed a bit to not be fear-based. Something like, “I want to feel strong. I love feeling good in my clothes (or out of my clothes!). I love how much energy I have when I eat well and exercise regularly.”
  • “I want to be more consistent with [blogging, social media, networking, etc.]”… Because I know my work helps people and I’m ready to do that. Because I’ve always dreamt of speaking and making more content will help me refine my message.

See the difference? Here’s the problem. Uncovering your real motivation is hard. Often, not until someone questions why you think you want or need a certain result will you get clear on what’s driving you (also, if you’ve had trouble taking action on something, I nearly guarantee it’s because you’re only clear on what you don’t want but not so clear on what you really REALLY want instead; OR, on the flip side, if you’ve ever woken up and thought “why am I doing this?!” and then felt blah but kept up with your commitments, same thing.).

No joke, this is one of my ninja skills.

I’d be happy to help you (this is often what I help people with during a Money Story Intensive)… the freedom, ease, and momentum you can build once you’re actually moving towards something is incredible (and the interesting thing is, you usually get all that stuff you want WAY quicker too).

P.S. Want to hear me talk more about this or need more of an explanation? I did a podcast episode with Michael Knouse of The Start Up Sessions where we talked about this whole concept quite a bit. I use cheesy analogies while digging deep – my favorite type of conversation!

Listen to it here!