Motivation Case Study: How to Get Motivated Again After Everything Falls Apart

How to Get Motivated

The clock is ticking, but the motivation is missing.

You know you’re supposed to be working. And yet, your creative excuses for avoiding work is starting to impress even yourself.

You plan how you’re going to work and make progress towards your dream. But when the time comes the energy and motivation isn’t there.

You procrastinate.

You’re no longer feeling the excitement and motivation.

You used to be bouncing-off-the-walls productive, with serious momentum and progress. But that’s all in the past.

What happened? Tragedy struck.

Mike Tyson said: “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” And you got punched in the mouth. It might have been a serious tragedy like losing a loved one, or something far less serious.

That doesn’t matter.

What does matter is that it caused things to come apart for you, and now you’re stuck.

You’re feeling frustrated and uncertain. You’re doubting your purpose and your direction. Hopelessness is rolling in like a cloud bank, and you’re ashamed at your blatant lack of progress.

You wonder if you’ll ever get there. Shining examples of people doing the extraordinary are all around you. But here you are, unable to move an inch.

You want to squeal like a stuck pig.

You know about the dip that comes when one tries to achieve something worthwhile. But it feels like you’re settling down in the dip and building a house there.

You’re in the belly of the whale.

Are you even contemplating pulling the pin? Is it time to give up on your dreams?

Or is it time to get back your motivation?

Don’t stress. You’re not lost. You need a proven plan to get motivated again, and that’s what you’ll get here.

You Can Bounce Back to Motivation (I Know!)

The good news is that this article tells you my story. It tells you how I suffered some setbacks, had everything fall apart, and then got back up.

I regained my motivation and started making progress again.

As you read this post, I’m sure you’ll agree that my story can help anyone who’s lost their motivation to regain it.

And, I regained my motivation and momentum the hard way. I didn’t have the benefit of a roadmap from someone who’s been through a similar ordeal.

You can learn from my experience.

This post will save you loads of time. It can help you recover from your setback. Thus, you can get going again months (if not years) sooner than you would’ve been able to without my example and my advice.

The Despair of the All-is-Lost Moment

It’s late one August evening, during Cape Town’s winter. I’m in tears.

I’ve reached rock bottom. I’m about to send my father an email to ask for money. The month-end is around the corner, and I don’t have a clue how I’ll pay my bills.

I would’ve considered suicide. But the thing is, I couldn’t.

No way.

Six weeks before this night, my brother shot and killed himself. I was partly in this sad state because of how that event messed me up. When my mom heard the news she had a heart attack.

We are all very thankful that my mother survived, but my brother’s decision decimated our family.

So, suicide was out of the question for me. At least that was some good news. Everything else in my life at that time was not, except for the presence and support of my loved ones.

Let’s take stock of where I was that evening:

  • I was a derivatives trader who had used up all his trading capital to pay bills and debt. Over-optimistic spending a few years prior caused the shortfall. By spending my capital, I had cut off a primary source of income.
  • As I could no longer trade, I felt too bad to continue as a trading coach and trading online trainer. As a result, I had decided to walk away from a thriving online business.
  • I was almost 100% sure that trading wasn’t to be my main passion longer-term. I felt a calling to go into a spiritual career (at least part-time) but I had fear because of failed past attempts. It felt like the preceding four years of my life (during which I traded full time) was a waste.
  • I felt tired. For years I’d done the unimaginable. I made a very decent living from derivatives trading and online business. But it was energy-sapping stuff. There were never any guarantees. Every month-end I was responsible for having more money flowing in than out.
  • I was angry and disillusioned. My brother’s death overthrew the apple cart for me. I’d lost faith in my world view at the time.

So, the bottom line? I was in serious trouble.

I had left my full-time job roughly 12 years earlier and had a massive gap in my CV. Now I had limited options.

Also, I was a white, Afrikaans South African male. I faced resistance in finding work because of post-apartheid transformation targets.

I was stuck, without money, without a plan, and without the motivation to attempt anything new.

Let’s consider how I came out of this hole.

The Decision That Turned My Life Around

Early in 2018, I was heading to Australia for a mix of work and seeing some friends and family. I was working for my father’s property development business at that time.

Yes, if you’re wondering, I’m sure my father offered me a job more to help me than because he needed me. I did do my best though, and today I still help him part-time. I’m very blessed to have a father like him. He’s a rock!

On the day before I departed to Australia, my wife and I got into a fight. I can’t remember what it was about. I’m sure it was something pretty stupid though, but it was terrible to fight with her so soon before my departure.

We didn’t cuddle like we do every night of our lives, and this on the last night in three weeks that I would see her.

In the early morning hours before I got up, I had a vision. I can’t remember if it was a dream or if I was awake. It was a vision of a knight (me) having his neck broken by a dragon.

This might sound weird, but I knew immediately what it meant.

I’m a big fan of Steven Pressfield and I’ve read most of his non-fiction books many times.

On the field of the Self stand a knight and a dragon. You are the knight. Resistance is the dragon.”Steven Pressfield

He’s best known for his book The War of Art. In it he describes a force called the Resistance. It opposes anyone who aspires to achieve something noble.

If you’re ambitious, an entrepreneur, an author or an artist, and you’ve not yet read this book, get your hands on it right now.

My vision said to me, in no uncertain terms, that I was allowing Resistance to mess up my life.

I made a decision that morning in the Uber to the airport. I decided to stop drinking alcohol. In addition, I decided to stop all other unhealthy or energy depleting habits and behaviors.

I couldn’t immediately stop all my bad habits. It was difficult to overcome some of the more addictive behaviors. But today I live with near-constant wisdom and freedom.

This decision was a turning point in my life.

What behaviors are keeping you stuck? Where are you letting yourself down?

Are you:

  • Eating too much sugar or other refined carbohydrates?
  • Addicted to nicotine?
  • A regular, daily user of alcohol? Or, worse, a binge drinker?
  • Using pornography on a regular basis?
  • Addicted to sexual behavior in any way?
  • Living a very sedentary life and hardly ever exercising?
  • Using cannabis, mushrooms or hard drugs on a regular basis?
  • Often breaking the law as a driver, with an aggressive attitude towards other drivers?

Please don’t think I’m on a moral crusade here. I’m asking this from a place of trying to help you get your motivation and creative power back.

I’m not the wet diaper that ruins your fun.

If you enjoy it, go for it. If you can say that it’s not holding you back from your destiny, then, please — knock yourself out!

It’s your life, and the last thing I want to do is to judge anyone. I see my past self in every one of those behaviors, so I’ll be the last to judge anyone.

If you feel that one of the listed behaviors is an area of concern for you, then make a plan to set yourself free from it. This is the first step back to your power.

If you’ve been trying to break free but failed, please get in contact with me. I’ll do my best to point you in the right direction for resources that can help you break free.

Stop Wanting a Better Life

After the spiritual deepening that followed my decision, I experienced a profound breakthrough.

I realized that I had been wanting all my life. I had been a big follower of the Law of Attraction teachings. They work on the assumption that you want certain things to happen/manifest.

The human mind has an insatiable hunger for more. And it always sees itself getting what it wants in the future, never now.

The state of wanting is the main aspect of ego-identification. And that, in turn, is the single biggest obstacle to spiritual enlightenment.

I started practicing a new approach to life: “I don’t mind what happens.”

I stopped wanting a better life!

And this has made all the difference. It’s such an ego killer!

Soon after I heard of a job position perfect for me and my background as an actuarial consultant. It was like magic.

Today I work with amazing people on exciting tasks each day. I’m having fun while I receive stimulation and good compensation.

I stopped wanting any specific outcomes in the future. Soon after this, the Universe showed me where I could serve.

The serious spiritual practice made possible by my big decision soon bore fruit. I now also live with a mind-blowing amount of synchronicity and spiritual guidance. It’s a magical experience.

I have freedom from all energy-sapping behaviors now. I even quit “harmless” habits like compulsive mobile game playing.

To my own amazement, I now drive at the speed limit and no longer have any egoic anger episodes with other drivers.

I have way more confidence.

My relationships have improved. My finances and level of debt are also coming around.

The constant anxiety which I suffered from most of my life is gone. In its place? Profound states of joy, peace, and clarity.

The clarity that came is also responsible for productivity and progress in all areas of my life. Let’s look at how I got more clarity.

I developed a mission statement.

I arrived at this by asking what creative work/service I enjoyed doing. Then I connected that to a larger mission.

And now, I live and practice this, with enthusiasm, as often as possible.

Below I show you how you can do the same.

What True Success Looks Like

A lack of motivation often goes hand in hand with a lack of clarity.

And suffering a setback often presents one with the chance to sharpen one’s clarity. Suffering is a great teacher.

Decided that you’ll no longer “want a better life”, and you’ll no longer be looking for salvation in the future. Now, you’re free to find success in the present moment.

First, ask yourself what creative activity/act of service you enjoy doing.

Second, think about how you can connect that with a larger mission.

Use this to develop a mission statement for yourself. For me, it’s this:

I serve people who want spiritual clarity in their chaotic, cluttered lives.

Please note, I’m not talking about my day job here. This is more like a life mission. It precedes and transcends my day job. I still serve at my day job inside this larger mission.

Also note, the mission statement isn’t based in the future. It is not the little-me being or having something. That is ego-food, not motivation.

I do not say: I see myself as a world-renowned blogger who travels the world in style while writing a blog post each week.

Nope. It’s an activity that I do in the moment. With enjoyment and enthusiasm.

Find your mission statement. Start living it with presence and enthusiasm in your spare time. If you do this, you’re succeeding in the most profound way already.

You’ve stopped waiting to be successful. For you, success is here, now. Isn’t that a freeing thought? You can be a massive success in life, starting right now.

A nice template for writing your own mission statement is: “I serve people who want …”. You can replace the … with many things:

  • a beautiful house/interior
  • to read great fiction
  • justice
  • articles that inspire them to productivity
  • to beautify their houses and lives with stunning artworks
  • freedom from addiction
  • a nice meal
  • to travel to my city and see all the sights
  • and on and on…

You get the point.

Drop your need for a better life somewhere in the future. Focus on your mission statement. You’ll stop chasing future pleasure, and have true Joy right now.

There’s a profound difference, and the only way to know it is to experience it.

You’ll see progress in all areas of your life.

And, of course, you’ll also be raising the consciousness on planet Earth!

Ready to Get Your Motivation Mojo Back?

To lose your motivation is no fun. Neither is feeling anxious for a lack of much-needed progress.

Yes, you suffered a setback, and other people would take it slow and be fine with it. But you hate being stuck, right?

So, take the first step to maximize your motivation right now.

As explained above, audit your life. Are there habits or behaviors that are keeping you back from your clearest vibration? If so, be ruthless and pluck them out!

Come on… You know what it is. It’s bothering you right now.

Be ruthless. It can be quite refreshing to be free. And some discipline will kick-start the process back to motivated progress.

Find the inner power to follow the simple process I followed in my life and outlined for you above.

Get clarity! Create your own mission statement today.

It feels incredible to be in alignment with life.

Soon you’ll be living inside your destiny with enjoyment and enthusiasm. And that brings true Joy, the best feeling of them all!

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