Motivation vs Intention
In the book, Atomic Habits, author James Clear makes a point that motivation isn’t what gets you places. In fact, it’s intention. Motivation to do something doesn't cause action. If it does, it’s finite at best. You can’t stay motivated forever, it will run out.
The example we’re all familiar with is a New Year’s resolution to work out more. Come January 1, they’re super motivated and hit the gym frequently. Once March rolls around they have a hard time sticking with their new habit because they think motivation is going to carry them to the finish line.
What takes desire and turns it into action is your plan for implementation. Deciding where/when/how you will take action towards your goals or new habit is much more impactful that relying on motivation or willpower. I know this sounds simple. Maybe even too simple if you’ve tried and failed to stick with something many times. If that’s what you’re thinking: do you write your intentions down?
Not many people write goals or actionable steps towards goals down. What we’ve learned from all the research in Clear’s book, you have to do this. You need to set some boundaries, set some intentions and call yourself out by declaring it on a sheet of paper. This is your fail-safe for when motivation runs out.