Is motivation a lie? Over the weekend, I listened to the latest ReThinking podcast with Adam Grant and Robin Arzón. If you haven’t given it a listen yet, I highly recommend it! Robin’s journey, from the daughter of a Cuban refugee to overcoming a near-death experience, is nothing short of inspiring. Plus, let’s admit it – she’s the powerhouse that gets many of us through our workouts (🙌 Robin’s Wolfpack)! Robin and Adam talk about about finding motivation, maintaining energy, and rethinking hustle culture.

As someone deeply involved in helping people change behavior, motivation is a topic that always comes up- how to do it when you don’t feel like it. It’s often blamed for why healthy habits don’t stick. But is motivation really just a myth, or can we manipulate it?

The Link between Motivation and Dopamine

Recent studies have looked into the link between motivation and dopamine, the feel-good chemical in our brains. The talk about dopamine has exploded, with social media flooded with videos and images, including tips promising to affect your dopamine levels.It’s hard to miss, with hashtags like #dopamine reaching over 700 million views on TikTok.

One name that consistently comes up in discussions about dopamine is Andrew Huberman, a respected neuroscientist whose work has opened new doors in understanding how we can manage dopamine levels to sustain motivation. His tips range from small rewards to natural strategies like sunlight exposure and cold showers. There are even nutritional strategies to boost dopamine (yes, there’s even a dopamine diet). Foods rich in magnesium and tyrosine, such as almonds, avocados, and dark chocolate, can play a role in dopamine production.

“Hacked Out”

I’ll admit I love diving into the science behind it all. Knowing that we can change our dopamine levels to boost motivation is empowering. Let’s be honest, though – it can also feel like a lot to take in. With a long list of self-care practices and healthy habits, it’s easy to feel “hacked out.” But Robin Arzon’s no-nonsense, gritty perspective is a breath of fresh air on the topic.

This discussion couldn’t come at a better time for me. I just started training for my 4th endurance event, the 29209 Everesting Challenge. Training is long, literally and figuratively. I’m a month behind and struggling to get into a good rhythm. But I’m reminded that sometimes all it takes is one small action, even if it’s just lacing up and hitting the road for a few minutes. Anyone can do something for 5 minutes, right? Whenever I don’t feel like doing the thing, I reduce it to the tiniest task and break things down into manageable steps. Or as Robin puts it, “It’s making one small decision today that will make tomorrow a little bit easier.”

I’d love to hear from you. What’s your perspective on motivation? What strategies and tips work for you? Let’s get the conversation going!

#Motivation #BehaviorChange #Wellness #Fitness #EnduranceTraining #Dopamine #SelfImprovement #HealthyHabits #PersonalDevelopment #peloton #29029everesting