Nicolas Manotas

Unmotivated and the difficulty of taking action

How many times have you awaken without enough energy, you feel no desire to go to work, pay attention to your partner, your parents, your children, in short, you feel that you got up on the wrong foot. Has it happen to you not just one day but several days or even for weeks.

Routine, how you look in the mirror, the feeling of not been challenged (being in your comfort zone), not having clear what your dreams and passions are, being surrounded by the wrong people and the emotional state you’re living can take you to be in an apathetic state that is sloppiness, lack of energy, enthusiasm, lack of motivation, indifference about the main aspects of your own life.

During your lifetime you have lived moments when you do not know if you really are happy, you do not know what you want to do and if you know, you do not know how; you feel lost and unmotivated to take action and change the course of your life.

On other occasions I have pointed out that taking action is not enough to change our lives, we have to delve from where we are seeing the world to begin to see with new eyes and thus to see and feel new scenarios that will lead us to take actions that allow us to see different results.

When we enter a state of apathy, everything that happens around us seems difficult, confusing and even impossible because we don’t have the tools to understand why we feel like we feel.

My invitation on this blog, is to understand apathy, understand what it is composed of and confront face to face this mood that paralyzes and prevents us to pursue our dreams and aspirations.

 I want to share with you the main aspects of apathy so we can analyze and become conscious of this in our lives to stop it from being an invisible monster that close us from our possibilities. I invite you, from now on to be consciousness whenever this four-legged monster appears in your life and then you can do something about it.

The first leg of this monster is ignorance, not knowing. It is impossible to pretend to know everything in life, however, we are so hard on ourselves we punish ourselves for not knowing something and what is worse, not knowing something often discourages us to try different things. We must realize that today knowledge is accessible to all and only requires efforts on our part to look, but how many times we forget this? We can access Google, to countless books, workshops, online courses, online degree programs, seminars, university programs, ask people who know etc.

However, what happens if you do not know something, usually our first reaction is fear against the unknown and fear usually leads to two actions, paralyzes us or make us flee. Fear will show all the judgments you have about yourself and all those judgments that have allowed people to do on you, which up to this point in your life you have believed as your own.

Suppose you want to start a business or be independent. At first, you only find obstacles as you think your target is far away. How do you know how much money you need to start, what permissions are required, what taxes you need to pay, who should you contact to make this happen etc. Faced with so many uncertain factors are common for people to surrender before, they feel overwhelmed or put thousands of conditions as requirements before which leads us to never start. All this happens by ignorance or disregard of the subject. Against this we must seek knowledge wherever this is found, it sounds logical and obvious, but in practice it is anything but that. In the real world sometimes we are too proud to ask for support and feel shameful to accept that we do not know and that is where we were in inaction.

To learn something new the first step is to accept that we do not know everything. If you do not accept that, it is impossible to learn something new. I invite you to declare to yourself and to others if this helps you, to commit yourself, and say what those aspects of your life are that you do not know and you want to learn. You’ll see how doing it opens a world of possibilities.

The second leg of the monster is the lack of reflection. — How is that possible you wonder if all the time I’m thinking? — Just thinking does not necessarily mean your reflecting. Reflect is to delve into what is going on with your life. Beyond thinking, that is what is happening and because it is not giving what you what you want, thinking is going deep into a conversation with yourself where you internalize and make awareness of your thoughts, how you communicate with the world, how you ask or you are offering to others, what emotional state you are and thus to see the possibilities that you open or close.

It is at this time when the right questions should reach our lives. Normally before an adversity we focus on how to discover and find the answer, when really we should reflect on “why” of our need, which is accompanied by several questions of this type. Once we have several questions about why of our needs, we moved to the next question which is “what if X or Y happens.” With this question arise more questions and is where we begin to develop possible scenarios and fields of action, listen to yourself good, potential in plural is not only an alternative. By allowing our brain to project different scenarios, we give it the need to start being creative consciously and subconsciously which brings us to the end of the question and that would be the “how”, which is the implementation and one could say that the response to our previous questions. But beware, these responses (how) only appear on the experiences of everyday life when we clear the question. In life you have to respect the process and in the case of the questions we usually launched at the end and we wonder how I can get more money, how will I meet a new partner, how can I find something that motivates me …

Normally we seek to distract from reflecting. It can be very hard to face the reality of what is happening to us and seek to hide or be distracted by work, social life, sports, sex or any other activity that requires our attention. Ask yourself how many times have you started to think about something that is happening in your life that you end up overwhelmed and the first thing you want to do is stop feeling anxiety, insecurity and uncertainty and you get to do anything else. When this happens, your body and your emotions are trying to tell you something that is important to you, try to listen more often.

The third leg of the monster is the fear of making mistakes. As I mentioned before, the main manifestation of fear is to feel paralyzed or to flee, it requires courage and determination so it doesn’t become a limiting factor in our lives. When we hear the fear, the message it wants us to understand that this emotion is something that is important to us and we can come to lose it, life can be our partner, our money, our pride, our image, our security etc. We live under the false belief that being successful is to have everything and really people have been successful in different areas of life, precisely because they have been lost at some point, have made mistakes and have learned from them. The first step is to act, we cannot make mistakes if we do not act and take action. Most people lose the war in the first battle to be paralyzed or flee before facing something new, different or unknown and are thinking of a thousand circumstances which things can go wrong they end up not doing anything.

Read biographies of famous people in different fields, talk to your parents or friends, asks about people you admire and consider who are successful in different areas and you will be surprised to know how many times they have lost and have been wrong and that precisely those mistakes are what have opened their eyes to find the next step in your search. If you want to make money you must be willing to lose money, if you want to learn something you must be willing to be wrong, if you want to find the love of your life and give yourself to another person you must be willing to have your heart broken. If you do not give the best of you at every opportunity and do things halfway so as not make a mistake, you’ll get mediocre results and never find what is your passion or what you love.

The fourth leg of this monster is laziness. This word has great impact and importance in our lives because it has the skill to go unnoticed and be filled with excuses not to start a project. Have you noticed that laziness manifests itself at different levels? for purposes of this blog we will mediate it from 1 to 10 where 1 is no laziness and 10 complete laziness. Now, I want you to think how aware are you when laziness manifests in your life between 3 and 8 … probably goes unnoticed or associate with something else. Laziness is a bad human habit, it anchors to the floor and leads to inaction. Normally you identify at its worst, i.e. when you realize it and you don’t do something or when “do not” feel because you did something.

The complexity of laziness is that it has the ability to blend in and is confused with many other things, and also comes with fears and insecurities. Have you noticed that one of the main manifestations of laziness is when you procrastinate? When this happens you could say that is when it manifests in a Level 5 to give an example.

Notice the times you wanted to take something and just when you least think you’re putting it off by focusing on a lower priority for you? Remember I told you that laziness is accompanied by fear and insecurity, precisely at the bottom you are conscious of this situation, and when you want to do something, then you decide that you will leave it for a later time to act and think and that requires effort and commitment

My intention with this blog is to begin to raise awareness of the times you postpone something that you consider important in your life and realize it as laziness plays a determining role precisely because you were not previously aware of this. You ‘ll realize that despite having resources and time to do so (because when we do something we love always find the time to do), decided not to act and stay in laziness mode.

The last part of this monster we call apathy is your body, the central part to which are attached each of the legs. In the body stays what I call learned helplessness, the judgment of SO AM I, then there are the guts, what lies within each of us. These are the lessons that society and we ourselves have given us regarding one aspect and any situation.

So you can understand better I’ll explain with an example. If all my life I considered that I don’t know how to dance, either because I’m a little amortize or because my parents or my friends tell me all the time, from some perspectives this may be true but I want you to know that is really an opinion, it is not a reality. While as a Colombian I think not knowing how to dance salsa is very obvious, for an American or a European I can look like a person who dances well and has a lot of rhythm because for them it is an unknown dance they have never practiced and it costs them greatly to coordinate the basic steps that I coordinate. What is the roll of this learned helplessness? What happens is we do not know that is an appreciation, a point of view, is a mine or others which may vary according to the perspective interpretation. The problem is that such an interpretation, that point of view, that opinion I turn into a reality for me, in a “statement” (which defines it) and for that reason is that I will learn to never dance because THAT’S ME and I’M A BAD DANCER … This same type of “Affirmations” can say things like: I do not know love, I’m not good to, I’m ugly, I’m bad with numbers, I’m messy, I’m a bad person, I’m shy, I’m introverted, I’m unfriendly, I’m useless, I am unable etc.

Once a singer friend told me to sing you just have to know how to breathe, that anyone can sing, of course this does not mean that everyone who wants to will be known, will sell a lot of records and live of this profession. The important thing to note here is that most of our limits we perceive them as if they were realities, something that cannot be changed when they are really learning spaces. Many of the things we say we cannot do or we are not, in fact they are things that if we can learn and do not define us as people. You have awareness of many aspects of your life over which you considered that you were good at something or you could not do something and with time, practice and learning you started to do it and live it (examplea: dance, public speaking, learn a skill, talking to men or women etc.). The day you realize that many of the judgments you have about yourself or that people have about you are mere opinions and not realities, it will open in your life a world of possibilities because you will understand that it is not something that defines you (one affirmation) but an aspect that you can change if you so choose.

I invite you to together analyze the different areas of your life such as your physical appearance, your way of thinking, the way you feel and express yourself, how you communicate with others and what is the engine that drives you to get out of bed every day and seek to be the best version of yourself.

Does any of this make sense to you?

Feel free to contact me, schedule your first coaching session at no cost and let’s talk about this topic or any other that is upsetting you or you think there is room for improvement. Take the opportunity to pay attention to what is happening in your life and explore what you normally guard and do not share with others.

If you are in Miami, we can meet in person, or we can connect thru Skype

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