Let’s talk about motivation and where it really comes from. 

In my journey, both as someone who’s been coached and as a coach myself, I’ve come to a realization that might be a bit of a wake-up call: it’s not your coach’s job to motivate you. That might sound harsh at first, but stick with me here.

For the longest time, I believed that a coach or a mentor was the magic ingredient to staying motivated. I thought, “If I just find the right person to push me, I’ll be unstoppable.” But along the way, I learned something crucial – motivation is an inside job.

Coaches can guide, inspire, and challenge us. They can open doors we didn’t even know were there. But at the end of the day, the fire – that burning drive to go after what we want – has to come from within us. It’s like having the best gym equipment. Unless you’re committed to using it, it’s just going to gather dust.

I remember one coaching session where I was waiting for that golden nugget of wisdom that would suddenly make everything click. When it didn’t come, I felt let down. But then it hit me. Why was I expecting someone else to light a fire under me? That’s when I started shifting my perspective. I began to see my coach more as a navigator rather than the captain of my ship.

This shift was game-changing. It made me realize how empowering it is to take charge of your own motivation. It means that your progress isn’t tied to someone else’s presence or words. You start to cultivate this inner drive, this personal responsibility for your journey.

But how do you fuel this inner drive? For me, it started with setting goals that genuinely excited me, not just ones I thought I should aim for or what I thought others wanted from me. It meant digging deep to understand my ‘why’ – the real reason behind what I was doing. This isn’t a one-time thing, either. It’s a continuous process of self-reflection and adjustment.

I also learned the power of celebrating small wins. Each little victory added fuel to my motivation fire. It wasn’t just about reaching the final goal but acknowledging the progress along the way.

Don’t get me wrong, coaches play an incredibly important role. They provide invaluable insights, accountability, and support. But the real work, the drive to get up every day and push forward, that has to come from you.

So, if you’re feeling stuck and waiting for external motivation, I encourage you to look inward. Your passion, your goals, your dreams – they’re all the fuel you need. Find what lights you up and let that guide you. 

And if you’re a coach yourself, this understanding can be incredibly liberating. It relieves you from carrying the weight of feeling like you need to be the source of motivation for your clients. This realization came to me slowly, and it lifted a burden I didn’t even realize I was carrying.

As coaches, we often put immense pressure on ourselves to be the catalyst for our clients’ motivation and success. We feel responsible for their progress, their setbacks, and their breakthroughs. But embracing the truth that motivation is an internal force can change how we approach our role. We can shift from being the driving force to being facilitators of self-discovery and self-motivation.

This shift doesn’t diminish our role; it actually enhances it. We become enablers of a more profound transformation. We guide, we support, and we challenge, but we also step back and allow our clients to find their own rhythm and their own reasons to keep moving forward. This approach fosters a more sustainable form of motivation, one that doesn’t flicker out when we’re not around.

For me, understanding this has changed the way I coach. I focus more on helping clients uncover their own motivations to tap into their unique reasons for pursuing their goals. It’s about asking the right questions, listening deeply, and sometimes, simply being a mirror that reflects their own desires and strengths back at them.

This perspective also encourages a more collaborative relationship. Instead of leading from the front, we walk alongside our clients, supporting them as they take the lead in their own journey. It’s a partnership where their success is driven by their own efforts and dedication, not our ability to push or pull them along.

So, to my fellow coaches, remember this: your value doesn’t lie in being a perpetual source of motivation. It lies in your ability to empower others to ignite their own motivation. This understanding frees both you and your clients to engage in a more authentic, balanced, and ultimately effective coaching relationship.

And to everyone on their own path of growth and achievement: remember, the most powerful source of motivation will always come from within. Embrace it, nurture it, and let it drive you towards your goals. You’ve got this, and as coaches, we’re here to guide, support, and celebrate with you every step of the way.


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