Motivation. What is it and why do we need it?

Motivation is derived from a Latin word motive – meaning “to move’ and is the catalyst to action or energy for motion. In other words, it propels us to do something. Without it, there is no forward motion in life – life stands still.

Motivation is not something that comes to us – it is something that comes from within us. As the catalyst to action/energy for motion, it’s not something we wait for, it’s something we create that propels us to act, to do something. It is a cognitive process that connects a thought or a feeling with an action. It may be intrinsic (an internal drive to do something out of interest or enjoyment in exercise itself or valuing exercise as important or beneficial) or extrinsic (an external drive, such as rewards, competition or the threat of punishment.)


Getting started and sticking with a new habit such as an exercise program, can be hard, especially the first few weeks. The reality is, the intention or motivation to become healthier or fitter is one thing, the easier thing, but acting on that motivation is another and sustaining motivation can be tough under the most ideal circumstances.

So, how do we tap into this power and sustain our “motivation” to exercise regularly, eat healthier and improve our lives in a multitude of ways?  We can’t pop a magic pill and expect it to suddenly appear, no matter how much money we have, we can’t buy it, nor will it appear out of a magic bottle.

The good news is, motivation is something that we can tap into by design and harness. As the driving force that gets us up and out of bed in the morning and onto our workouts, motivation levels also must be taken to new heights, the same way our strength and fitness needs to be taken to new heights as they both work together – they support one another.

Learning to take control of the energy that moves us, the force that propels us into action is, without a doubt, the key to effortless sustainability. More so than any other factor, more than knowledge, even more than the perfect exercise program or eating plan, our ability to create, sustain and renew our motivation determines our success in our own personal wellness and in life.

It takes both intention (motivation) plus action to equal results. And, the more motivated we are, the easier it is to take action (exercise) in order to reach our goals.

It’s this steady stream of ever evolving motivation from within that powers us new heights. But, remember, what motivates us today will change. Just because it fired us up yesterday does not mean it works today. We must keep digging – deep inside to find that thing – that thought, feeling, belief, goal or reward that keeps us moving forward, that motivates us into action.

It’s time to take command of your life…

“Reclaim Your Longevity” can help you do just that…

For more tools and resources from Carolyn Hansen to assist you in attaining your health and fitness goals and achieving the success you desire in life, please visit: