A woman from the UK
I read what you had to
say on enthusiasm with, dare I say it, enthusiasm.
My trouble seems to be
that I cannot sustain that enthusiasm for any one thing for very
long. I have bursts of passion, set my goals way too high, flounder
and I'm back where I started in that grey limbo that so easily
and so often turns to depression and resentment.
I know you will say that
in a way I have answered my own question (it's not as though
I don't think about it often enough as I watch my life pass me
by I'm 42) in that I set goals too high, but lesser goals
afford me little or no passion at all.
I am (ungratefully) dragging
through a lukewarm existence in search of that sustainable fire...
Adam Khan responded:
Thanks for writing to me. I had a similar
problem for many years. The assumption I had made was that if
my enthusiasm dropped, there was something wrong with the goal.
What I finally realized is that enthusiasm and desire need to
be deliberately maintained. There are two ways to go about it.
The first is to sit down with paper and
pen when you feel your enthusiasm wane, and argue with your own
thoughts. Doubts and fears and pessimistic assumptions can, without
you even knowing what happened, completely kill your enthusiasm.
Now if it turns out that your doubts are legitimate, fine. Maybe
your enthusiam SHOULD die. But almost always like 99 percent
of the time when you put your thoughts on paper and take
an objective look, you will find you made faulty assumptions.
And these assumptions have occurred in the background of your
mind up until now.
Put it down on paper, find yourself a different
colored pen, and now argue with each assumption. Come up with
all the arguments against them you can think of. Read your little
dialog every morning until you can feel the power of those assumptions
has been killed.
The other part is to keep your desire burning
hot. Here's what happens: You think of a goal. You can think
of many good reasons why it would be great to accomplish that
goal. You take action. You get busy working on the goal. You
plan your time, you break it down into tasks, you're busy with
the tasks, you run into some problems maybe, and maybe not. But
the point is, you get kind of lost in the task, and in the details,
and in your to-do lists and you do the one thing which you must
never do: YOU FORGET WHY YOU WANTED THIS IN THE FIRST PLACE.
You're not thinking about that any more. That is a big mistake.
Even though you have thought before about
why you want to accomplish your goal, you will help keep your
enthusiasm high by thinking often of what you want and WHY you
want it. Keep a list of the reasons why this goal is a great
goal to accomplish. Keep adding more reasons as you think of
As mundane as it seems, these two ways
work very powerfully to keep your enthusiasm from fading. I heard
Zig Ziglar say something once that has stuck with me: The reason
motivation fades is that the world is full of demotivators. The
naysaying of friends, the problems that come up, the constant
distractions, the temptations to go off track, etc. But the worst
demotivators of all are what we do in our own heads. Those two
methods will help you make your thoughts work FOR you rather
than against you.
Good luck to you and feel free to write
to me any time.