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How To Love Yourself AND Still Feel Motivated

3 MINUTE READ

There’s a question I get often when I tell people they are enough, just as they are.

Here it is…

If I already love myself, just as I am – then how will I find the motivation to get better? Won’t I just sit on my butt and do nothing?

And I totally get it.

My dad was a depressed alcoholic and my family spent decades trying to save him until he effectively passed away.

I took a lot from those tragic experiences but perhaps one of the most powerful things was a sense that I wasn’t enough.

I wasn’t enough to make him happy. I wasn’t enough to solve his problems. I wasn’t a good enough reason for him to choose not to drink.

It sucked.

But it was also my superpower.

Because for almost 20 years, that gnawing sense of inadequacy was my rocket fuel.

It was the worry of not being good enough that drove me through high school and Oxford and McKinsey. It’s the reason I’ve done things like becoming fluent in 5 languages, running ultramarathons through deserts and even starting F2M.

And yet it was also incredibly destructive.

It made me anxious and selfish and unhappy. It was impossible to throttle or moderate. It distorted my decision making. It strained my relationships. It poisoned my life, day-to-day.

And a few years ago, I got sick of it.

I realised I was becoming exactly the same man as my father but with action, instead of alcohol, as my painkiller.

I knew where that pathway was heading.

I realised things needed to change.

But I was stuck.

Because for my whole life I’d relied on that sense of not-enoughness to fuel me through all I’d accomplished.

And despite knowing it was bad for me, I was terrified of giving it up.

Which brings us back to our question…

If I already love myself, just as I am – then how will I find the motivation to get better? Won’t I just sit on my butt and do nothing?

What’s the answer?

Take a moment to imagine four different versions of you…

The first you is a glutton.
They’ll eat anything and everything. They’re sad, sick and out of control.

The second you is anorexic.
They can’t find the will to eat anything. They’re rapidly wasting away.

The third you is a gourmet.
They eat for the joy of it. They eat because they just love the taste.

The fourth you is an athlete.
They eat what they need, when they need it. They eat as a means to an end.

Which combination of those options would you rather be? Which ones have the healthiest, happiest outcomes? Which ones make the most of each day?

You’d pick the gourmet and athlete, right?

It’s not rocket science.

And yet so many of us get fixated on just options one and two.

We can be a glutton OR anorexic.

We can hate ourselves OR feel nothing.

We can be all in OR waste away.

When the truth is there are at least two more choices.

So embrace them.

Be a gourmet. Take action because it makes you happy.

Be an athlete. Live for people and causes and goals that transcend you.

Accept yourself. Love yourself. Be yourself.

And you won’t just become a healthier, happier and wealthier person.

You’ll see life in a whole different way.

Arthur Worsley
Arthur Worsley
Arthur is a thinker and writer who helps people who want more from their lives learn to be more productive, find more balance and live life more meaningfully. Want to know more? Take this 2-minute quiz to discover your Productivity Quotient (PQ) and learn how to get BIG things done. Take the Quiz →

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