Thursday, 5 March 2009

Elusive and Alluring- the musts of Motivation

Today I took another small step forward in my quest to diving deeper than I've ever dived before. But it must be said, the focus here must be on the word 'small'. The step the quest the dived the before are all just supporting actors. The star of the sentence is the 'small'.
No, I am not diving as deep as I hoped I would after a week in Dahab.
No, I'm not sad.
Because of my starry-bright beloved main actor- 'small'.

I've spent a lot of time thinking and rethinking the beauty and the challenge of motivation. What keeps us going? What will make me get up again at 7am tomorrow morning to go back to the Blue Hole, dive again, possibly deal with more shallower-than-wished-for dives, and still come back the next day.
I have had the privilege to work with a S-African sports psychologist by the name of Tim Goodenough, the author of a great book, 'In the Zone'.
We spent some time really turning over the meaning freediving holds for me, and exploring this.
My meaning with my freediving is easy, my deep love for the ocean never having been in doubt, but the other side of it... the competitive side holds demons for me, and I needed help.
So, what will motivate me to get up at 6 o'clock in the morning to go for a run in the slushy snow in Stockholm when I get back?

Somebody I care about deeply sent me an sms today that he'd lost all motivation. Which is what inspired this rather rambling post...

Motivation is derived from the word move- and is, in all simplicity, the willingness of action.
So: to move- willingly. In order to move, we must have a next step in mind- the dream. That will make me want to move from this position, to the next. In his book, Tim speaks of making that dream as real as possible. For me, it's that really deep dive. For an athlete, an olympic gold medal. And you have to dream in 3D, in surround sound, in smell, taste, touch. What will that gold medal feel like in your hand? How heavy w
ill it be? Can you smell the flowers the pretty girl hands you where you stand on the podium?
And when you can smell those flowers and you can feel that medal... then suddenly it might not be that hard to pull on those running shoes- what is an hour anyway compared to that very real dream?

What is your dream?

What wills you to move?

Visit Tim's site: Coaching Unity
Photo: Annelie Pompe


  1. From my experience, the goal motivation is half the story. You can also be intrinsically motivated, dive because you love to dive. Goal motivation can make you take the extra step, but also the step too far, right into burn-out territory. It's very hard to come back from that. I like your small steps, especially if you keep enjoying the road, as well as where it leads.

  2. Congrats on your PB! - glad to hear you are glad, training and improving.