Some days, you can't get yourself motivated.
Yet on other days, you're working so hard that you're frying up much too quickly. How do you keep a balance between getting yourself motivated and still not tipping over to the other side?
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Re-release: The Paradox of Motivation and Burnout (And Where To Draw the Line)
Original: The Paradox of Motivation and Burnout (And Where To Draw the Line)
Note: This is an unedited transcript.
Getting bread for breakfast was never an easy task when I was growing up.
And that is because there are so many choices for bread. bread. Right next to where I lived were three bakeries, which meant that you weren't stuck with one kind of sandwich bread. Instead, you had a small soft bread, a large soft bread, a crusty bread, sweetened bread with plums in it, and a bread cold poise, which had the husk of the wheat on it.
And if you're thinking, well, that's just four choices, that's true. However, my job was to get the bread. Since I was probably seven years old or younger, all the way up to 27. Twice a day, fresh bread had to be bought from the bakery, and what I bought depended on what the person felt like eating that day.
Unlike the repetitive nature of cereal or something that you eat every day, our breakfast changed almost every single day. One day, my grandmother would want the small soft bread one day she'd want the poe which is the husk bread and the same applied to my father and my mother and my brother and sister.
Every day the bread order would change based on what they were eating and how much they wanted to eat.
So this was a moving shifting situation where you had to be there to buy bread. Even when I grew up and went to parties, I call my mother and say, I made a party. And the first question would be, “Did you get the bread?”
In today's episode is not about bread, but it goes down similar lines. We'll cover three points, and the first point is, how do you motivate yourselves to do the same thing over and over again four years and end? But at the same time, how do you not overdo it to the point of burnout? And finally we'll take a look at this paradox which is having to do stuff and not burning up but how to use the this paradox.
So let's start out with the first thing which is how to motivate yourself to keep going for years and years.
To me to you, life is like an ice cream cone. We have one scoop and you can handle that scoop and then they put the second scoop and that's difficult. But then the third, fourth, fifth, sixth. Sounds bizarre, but that's kind of the ice cream cone that we get when we step out of life. And we don't know how to cope with all of these things.
We have to do so many things on a daily basis. Maybe we have to write on a daily basis, go for a walk, cook. Do a whole bunch of things that are repetitive in nature. And you think to yourself, how am I supposed to motivate myself every single day to do this activity? That probably I want to do on a regular basis.
But some days it's too hot and the other days it's too cold.
And some days you just not in the mood, you don't even know if anyone is listening, reading, paying attention. All of this is chatter that goes on in our heads and we're not sure how to cope with it. And the way to stop this chatter, at least for me, has been this line and I mentioned it before, this line from Brian Tracy.
He's an author, he's a speaker, and I used to have a lot of his tapes that I used to put in the car and then drive to various places meetings with clients to networking meetings. And I listen to Brian Tracy all the time and that one line stuck in my head which is that successful people hate doing the same things that unsuccessful people hate doing.
This line splits up into two sections and that is successful people. So first we had to define what success was for us and if you be listening to the previous podcast. You realize that fame used to be a priority, it's not a priority anymore. Money was a priority at one point in time, not a priority anymore.
We started out psychotactics in 2000 and by 2010 we had settled into the point where we were doing very well. And that's when we started to benchmark how we were lead the rest of our lives. And one of the benchmarks was if we stopped working right now, how long would we be able to survive?
Or rather, live the lives that we're living right now, which is quite comfortable, how long would we be able to go in this same manner? And so for us, that was success. That we could continue, no matter what happened. If we stopped today, something happened, we could keep going for the next 10 years, 20 years, 30 years.
That was one benchmark of success.
The other benchmark of success was that we could do the stuff that we wanted to do. We didn't have to follow any algorithms. We didn't have to follow any of the things that people asked us to do. We didn't have to follow any trends, any speakers, noting on the podium, telling us to pivot at the last minute. Nothing of that sort.
We could do exactly what we wanted to do when we wanted to do it, and how we wanted to do it. And there are other benchmarks of success, but once we had this sort of framework in place, we had to go to the second part of the sentence. And the first part is successful people, and then hate doing the same things that unsuccessful people hate doing. but they do it anyway.
And the second part is probably harder because all of us hate doing a lot of stuff.
And admittedly, hate is taking up all the oxygen in the sentence. One of the reasons why we hate and this is in air quotes, why we hate doing anything is because we're not that comfortable with it. We're not that fluent with it. We struggle to write an article. It takes too much time. Of course, we're not going to like it.
So the whole point of someone being successful, someone trying to do it every day doesn't make any difference to us because we still don't like having to sit there having to create this information or write this article or do this drawing because we're struggling so much.
We're struggling when we're doing the perspective on a drawing and it doesn't give us that energy but you get to a point where you're very good at doing it. You're fluent at doing the task and then it doesn't have the same weightage as the term “hate”. It doesn't have that heavy sudden feeling.
Now it's just, I would like to put it off, fun to tomorrow or the day after.
Because I'm good at it, but I just would like to do it later. Because once you've been in business for a while, you get comfortable, you get comfortable with your skill. And if you're not greedy, you're also comfortable with the income and how long you can last before, I don't know, you die.
Which means that if we were stabilized by 2010, we're now in 2021. How do we keep motivating ourselves to keep coming back on a daily basis? To keep putting out the newsletter week after week. We've never missed a newsletter since we started out in 2000. We've never missed a podcast since we started out in 2014.
We've never not responded to email personally to everybody, whether they bought something from us or not. We answer all the questions in the membership in 5,000 BC, all of the courses, do all of these webinars. How do you motivate yourself to do that? And there is no easy answer to it.
So I have to rely on this one statement, which is that successful people hate doing the same thing that unsuccessful people hate doing, but they do it anyway. And I like that sentence so much because it has so much depth in it without even trying to do so. So it talks about success, it talks about how you have to do this repetitive stuff.
And it brings up hate and why we hate doing it and how we have to keep going with just a little mantra that we have. That thing that wakes us up moves us out of the bed into the office and keeps us going. And sometimes we are like the energizer battery. We keep going and going and going.
And suddenly we are facing resistance.
We're facing resistance, we're facing burnout, and we hate to admit it. This takes us to the second part of today, which is how do you know that you heading towards burnout? What are the signs and how do you avoid it?
My niece's kira and masher have always come to our house to have a great time so they come to uplay some then they have karma-kola in the runner-round and the eat but mostly they played and when Kira was five I was lying around on the sofa one day and she ran up to me, stopped for a second and made one of those profound statements that I've ever heard.
She said and she calls me shani, she's called me shani She was very little and she says, “Sean is always tired.” And then she disappeared. She was off to play with Marsha. And I was going to protest, but there was nobody to protest too. I mean, first of all, how you were supposed to protest to a five-year-old that you are not tired.
But it struck me that even a five-year-old could very clearly tell when I was overdoing stuff. She didn't need me to be around to play with her. There was Marsha, they were screaming, giggling, laughing. She didn't need me at all. But she was perceptive enough to know that I was tired.
She would have liked me to join in the games.
But I wasn't that crucial to what they were doing. Nonetheless, it gave me that underlining factor for burnout. And that is how defensive we get when we're overdoing stuff. So at one stage in our lives, we tend to go, we're not good at this, we hate it and then we get better at it.
And after a while, we're just doing so much that someone around us is protesting or several people around us are protesting. Your partner, your wife, your husband, whoever will start to tell you, you're doing too much. And almost instantly, we cringe or we rise up in frustration or anger because we're all retired, remember.
And when you're that tired you don't have as much control over your emotions as you think you do, you get upset, you're a few at the point, you push back, you say, you know, I just have to finish this or I'm just checking this email. And usually the person around you uses the word always, you're always checking email, you're always working or shone is always start.
They use the word always and that means they've had enough. It also should signal that we are overdoing it, but we push back. And this is the flip side. On one side, how do you motivate yourself? And the other side, are you just overmotivated?
And this is the kind of struggle that we have to deal with every single day, which is why I have to use these sentences, Successful people always hate doing the same things that unsuccessful people hate doing but they do it anyway and then when I start doing too much and people around me start using the word always.
Then I know I have to back from it not protest not refute their point not can angry. But understand that they've had enough and by default I should have had enough These are the two balancing scales that Kind of keep me grounded and this takes us back to that sentence, which is successful people hate doing the same things that unsuccessful people hate doing, but they do it anyway. And so we have success, we have the repetitive nature, we have hate, and then doing it anyway. And that's the third part.
So in this third part, how do we keep doing stuff anyway?
In the answer to that is that I have a kind of ratio, most of the things that I do 80% 90% and I'm putting a figure on it, just a random figure. But most of the things that I do, other things that I like to do. And this answers the question of how can you keep going at it for so long because when we stop liking something, we stop it.
Back in 2006, 2007, 2008, we had the protege program. program brought in quite a sizable amount of revenue because each person paid ten thousand dollars a year to be part of that program. But after doing it for three years despite the revenue we decided this is too much. This doesn't give us that feeling of we can go anywhere we can do whatever we want. It binds us to that group. And so we dropped it.
Later on we had the sales page course and it was one of the fastest selling courses actually was the fastest selling course because it sold out in 20 minutes and yet after that for several years we didn't do the course because I didn't enjoy that first iteration of the course and then I had to rewrite all the notes dual audio do several workshops around the world and now we have a course that's building up and I'm still writing notes and rewriting them so that I like it and that we can conduct the course in the future with all of its trials and tribulations and yet show up every morning quite happy to take on the assignments and help the clients get to whatever they want to do achieve.
Hence, like plays a very important role in how you keep motivating yourself on a day-to-day basis even when the rest of the world doesn't feel like showing up.
So here we have it that's pretty much the end of the podcast, let's summarize the three things that we've covered.
The first thing is how do you motivate yourself on a daily basis? And I have this line which has been broken up into small segments which is successful people, hate doing the same things that unsuccessful people hate doing, but they do it anyway. And then we break it up into all of these segments. But after a while, we might get to the second phase where we start to enjoy it so much that we're just working all the time.
And we don't have this Now, in people's thought to use the word always around you, like, carried it, or Renuka or somebody else might just say, you're always, and that's your trigger. That tells you that you're being slightly obnoxious at some level and you don't realize it and you're just fighting back. Look for the way oldies.
And finally, we have how do you keep motivating yourself even after your success parameters have been met? Your revenue benchmarks have been met. All of that has been met. You have to start doing things that you like in profusion, 80%, 90% but a figure on it. It doesn't matter. And then there is the 10% stuff that you don't hate, but it's not that great and you can't outsource everything. You shouldn't outsource everything.
And you do these little things that take a little energy but you get there and you do it. And that brings us to the end of the spotcast. So what's the one thing that you should do? To me, the one thing that you should do is have a mantra of your own, have a line of your own.
Or you can borrow the one that I got from Brian Tracy and use it over and over again, because that's what wakes me up every day, or at least on the day is when I don't feel like bouncing to the office. So there you go, that's how you keep motivated.