Motivation, coupled with discipline, is what drives success. Here are 5 motivational quotes to help you keep crushing your goals!
The thing about motivation is that it ebbs and flows. It’s not a constant state of being. Discipline is what kicks in when motivation starts to wane, but there are things that can inspire us to push through the lull in motivation – a favorite motivational quote!
For me, quotes and mantras work really well. Sayings and short phrases that I can repeat to myself or write out on a sticky note help me remember what matters and why I was motivated in the first place. For whatever it is I’m working toward, whether it’s my weight loss journey or training for a 10k or just getting up in the morning, there are some famous words of wisdom that give me that extra pep in my step and get me to that next bout of motivation and help me stick to my intentions.
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#1: “Never break a promise to yourself.” – Rachel Hollis
I know she’s problematic. I know there’s a lot of stuff about her, her offerings to the world, and her general behavior that is just really… *cringe*. I know a lot of people don’t like her and never have. For me, I found her book “Girl, Wash Your Face” incredibly inspiring back in 2019 as I was coming out of my postpartum depression hole of despair. If I’m being totally transparent, though, I am not a big fan anymore and find most of her content now pretty difficult to consume, so I don’t buy into her BS anymore.
For what it’s worth, though, this one is still one I fall back onto most. This is one of those phrases that can get me through just about anything, as I continue to work really hard on building my self-esteem and practicing self-compassion. This one gets me right in the feels and reminds me “I am enough”- which is something I think a lot of us struggle with from time to time. This one reminds me that other people may quit on me, plans may fall through, and sometime people don’t stick to their word, but I will always show up for myself and at the end of the day, I’m enough for me.
#2: “You can choose courage, or you can choose comfort, but you cannot choose both.” – Brene Brown
Brene can honestly do no wrong. I just love her to pieces. At any rate, this one is pretty inspiring because it reminds me that growth not only can be uncomfortable, but it should be expected that it is uncomfortable. I’ll say that again: it should be expected that growth feels uncomfortable.
If ever I start to feel like something is too hard or becoming too difficult to continue, this is one of those motivational quotes that serves as a reminder that I’d rather make the choice to be brave than rest on my laurels and stay in my comfort zone. This one is a good one to help us remember that sometimes “doing it scared” is better than not doing anything at all.
#3: “A ship in harbor is safe, but that’s not what ships are built for.” – John A Shedd
This is another quote that helps me remember that it’s okay to be uncomfortable. So much of my “growing up” years, I spent so worried what other people would think. I was so worried about how I was being perceived and if other people thought I was “cool” or at the very least “not weird”. Going through this “growth period” as an adult now, I have the experience and maturity to realize that other people’s opinions are none of my business (more on that in a minute), and that I care less about what people think about me being cool and more about me finding out what I think is cool. Finding out what I think is cool is me finding out what I’m built for, and that’s where the magic happens.
Once you can figure out what you’re built for, and even the process of finding that out, that’s when you can fully lean into who you’re supposed to be. That’s when you can set sail and let your proverbial freak flag fly – without giving a single fuck, in actuality. And the journey of doing that is uncomfortable. It’s hard because you have to fight all of those deep-seeded beliefs you spent a lifetime forming. So much of becoming is actually un-becoming. You have to let go of what isn’t you, what isn’t yours to hold onto or worry about, and what isn’t serving you. For the sake of this metaphor, you must let go of the safety of the shore or the dock, and you have to set sail in trusting your own self – your own judgment, your own decisions, and your own sense of self.
Trust me, it is so hard. So hard. And is it something you just one day do and that’s the end? Absolutely not. This is an ongoing process. But the everyday investment in yourself to be un-moored is actually the biggest form of self-love you can do. And you do it because you’re worth it. Because you were built for it.
#4: “Other people’s opinions of you are none of your business.” – Robin Sharma
This is something I heard for the first time from Rachel Hollis, but I have conducted further research on The Google and found that it’s actually attributed to someone else, thank goodness.
If there is only one thing people need to collect as an adult and hold onto forever and ever, it’s this. I clap each syllable of this every time I think of it because it’s truly that important. In a world of social media and highlight reels and every social interaction dripping with inauthenticity, this is the one that I come back to when I start feeling really insecure. When I feet at war with myself, this is one that can usually help direct what the right decision is.
When I started my wellness journey at 226 pounds and decided I was going to start running, did I give a fuck about what people thought about what I looked like huffing and puffing down the street as I could barely “run” a single solitary minute? You bet your booty I did. I was so embarrassed, and I was absolutely worried that my neighbors were judging me as I pushed my baby’s stroller and tried to run. I was terrified. Did they notice? Did they care? Were they calling me fat from inside their homes behind their windows and doors? Maybe, but probably not.
It could have stopped me. I could have been so embarrassed that I didn’t even start. But then what? I was choosing to live in the discomfort of worrying about their opinions just to get started, and that shit is HEAVY. I carried it around for a while, not really realizing that it was even a choice. Then one summer day it was hot & humid AF and I was pushing the stroller and working my way through my Couch to 5k running program, and I was sweating so much, and I decided to rip my shirt off because I just couldn’t stand to have it wet against my skin.
One day I just decided to stop carrying heavy shit that didn’t belong to me. At the top of that list? The opinions of other people. I’m not saying it’s easy. In fact, in all of this, I keep telling you over and over again how hard all of these things are. At the end of the day, it’s your choice: you can live for you, or you can live for other people – and one of those things will get you a more fulfilled and authentic life (hint: it’s not one where you let other people dictate your happiness). I can guarantee you that your creator (or the ruler of the universe, whatever belief system you subscribe to), did not put you here so that you lived an unfulfilled life.
Bottom Line: When you let go of stuff that isn’t yours, you immediately get freed up to care about (or worry about, your choice) stuff that is actually yours. There’s a freedom in that that is just so beautiful.
#5: “How you do anything is how you do everything!” – Jess Sims
I got this gem from Jess Sims, who is a Peloton instructor. This one gets me through just about every workout I do where I wanna quit before it’s time to quit. This one always reminds me to keep pushing til the finish.
Any time I want to half-ass anything, this is one of the best motivational quotes that gives me pause. If I can snap into focus that every single thing I do is a reflection of who I am, it dictates how I show up in the world, whether that’s brushing my teeth, running a 5k, or showing up for a friend.
Here’s a “for instance” for ya: if I’m out for a run and I want to quit before my interval is done, I can hear this in my head telling me “How you do anything is how you do everything!” and it tells me if I quit my interval early, it’s a reflection of me quitting on everything else in my life. Am I a quitter? Is that who I want to be? Absolutely not. This quote helps me dig deep and remember who I am, who I am trying to be, and who I hope to eventually become. This one is the one that is extremely effective in finding that drive deep inside my soul to drive decisions that keep me on the course for who I set sail to become, even when it really feels like I have nothing left in the tank to give.
Long story short, friends, is that motivation wanes. It is not a permanent state of being, and it will leave you. There are some fail-safe ways I can artificially manufacture it, but it’s a lot of uncomfortable self-talk and difficult reminders.
Motivation, coupled with discipline, is what drives success – in any aspect of life that you’re working on. To stay motivated, you must accept that motivation is going to disappear at times, and that’s when you’ll have to rely on that discipline piece. That’s the un-sexy truth. Just like when you get that jolt of life when you drink your morning coffee, you have to find those little nuggets of wisdom that help you remember what it is you’re trying to accomplish and why. Motivational quotes can serve you in a way to getting you there. Those little breadcrumbs will lead you back to the path of your journey and will help you find those small wins.
We already know that small wins lead to big wins because of the laws of compounding interest. Small wins create momentum, which propels us forward. As we collect our successes and have a track-record for accomplishing what we set out to do, you build your own trust in yourself, and finding that motivation becomes easier and easier- but that’s something that happens over time. It’s supposed to be hard, that’s why it feels so good when you’ve actually done it.
What helps you find motivation? LMK in the comments!!
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Cover Photo Ylanite Koppens