Why Determination is Greater than Motivation

It’ll come as no surprise.

In fact, it’s been staring me in the face for quite some time now.

My blogging mojo has faded.

That spark of ingenuity, that blaze of fiery passion, that blissful ride of inspiration has been eluding me for the past 6 months.

And it’s been a battle of epic proportions {ok, maybe I’m being a bit melodramatic there} to reconnect with my creative spark.

I’ve tried baiting it, I’ve tried giving it the cold shoulder, I’ve read about it, meditated on it, even dabbled in other areas of creativity {which I actually think has helped as well as connected me with a new passion project – more on that later}, I’ve tried tricking it, I’ve tried crying tears of desperation, yelling in frustration – basically anything and everything available in the playbook to lure an ex-lover back into your clutches.

All this, and yet, still nothing.

If my creative mojo were a real person I feel like my name would be replaced with “TROUBLE – Do NOT pick up” in their cell phone.

Cause I’ll be honest – I’ve been a little cray-cray…

However, despite my desire to continue acting like a petulant two-year old, I’ve slowly been coming to terms with creative inspiration/motivation/mojo/whateveryouwantocallit – and how it’s not going to be fooled by crazy antics.

As much as I’ve jumped and screamed and danced my little gig, inspiration hasn’t been impressed – it’s seen this show 1000s of times, some WAY better than what I’ve been putting on.

I’ve come to the realization Inspiration (yes, with a capital ‘I’ – because respect, yo.) wasn’t going to respond to my shenanigans.

Nope. It was simply going to wait.

Wait for me to stop making promises to do this, that, and the other.

Wait for me to stop allowing myself to be distracted. Wait for me to stop making all the excuses.

Wait for me to finally sit down and actually get to work.

Stop Looking for Motivation

You see, moments of inspiration/motivation are all well and good – fantastic even!

But they aren’t 100% reliable.

Heck they’re not even 75% reliable, in fact – dare I say – they are the most unreliable elements of this world.

They come and go as they please, fading in and out, taking extended holidays for weeks, months, even years.

There’s no denying that inspiration and motivation are great fun to work with. And while you should always keep your doors open to them, letting them know they can stop by anytime and stay for as long as they’d like – you don’t want to be expectant of their visit.

Sitting around waiting for them to come by is a poor use of your time, because you can never guarantee when that’ll be.

The real game changer – the thing that will get you from point A to point B then onward to point C, is – without a doubt – determination.

Determination aka The Only Tool You’ll Ever Need

Let’s be real, friends – you’re going to have shit days.

Days you want to do nothing more than stay in bed, days where it feels like the universe is against you, days where no matter how much effort you put forth the fruits of your labor still come up short.

And you’ll have seasons where days such as these are more frequent than you think is fair or just.

And those are the days when it’s essential to have determination in your ass-kicking toolbox.

True story: after a very long day tubing around London for work, as I was sitting down to try and write this very post about determination, one of my cats decided peeing in the litter box is overrated and thought it would be more fun to take a giant piss on the floor right in front of me.

And you best believe I griped and moaned and chastised my cat (C’mon man – the litter box was right there!). All while in the back of my mind I was also tempted to use this as a convenient excuse to throw up my hands in defeat – clearly this was a sign from the universe that I’m not meant to write this post.

But then determination leaned in and gave me the ultimate judgey side-eye…

Determination: Really? You’re going to let a little bit of cat pee stop you from writing this post you’ve been thinking about all weekend? And you wonder why inspiration hasn’t graced you with her presence lately….?

Me: Well….No….but…but didn’t you see?! It was all OVER the floor! And it almost got on the rug!

Determination: Riiiiight….So then clean it up, move on, and get back to work. Inspiration won’t be impressed you gave up over a little cat pee. And this post isn’t going to write itself.

(In case you’re wondering, yes these are the conversations I have in my head – I was being completely honest when I said was crazy)

I, albeit reluctantly, agree – clean up the pee, get back to work and though it wasn’t the prettiest thing, within an hour I had a post written.

Do The Work

I tell you all this not just because it was a convenient story for this post, but because I know there are many of you who are looking to create, make, and do really cool things in your life.

And while I don’t know what those things are, I can almost guarantee the majority of you are waiting for inspiration to glide in and take you on a magic carpet ride to your biggest, baddest, kick-ass-iest (ehhh, just roll with it) dreams.

I know this because that’s exactly what I’ve been up to these past 6 months.

Wishin’ and hopin’ and thinkin’ and prayin’ on inspiration to carry me through to new creative heights. And as a result I’ve been waiting for practically half the year.

So at this point, I’m kind of over waiting for that magic carpet ride.

I’m also over making promises of this, that, or the other. Allowing myself to get distracted and making up excuses.

I no longer want to wax poetic about what I hope to do, where I hope to go, and what I hope to see.

Hope, while all well and good, won’t get me there – doing the work will.

So from here on out – I’m determined to simply do the work.

Because while inspiration may of started me on this wacky journey toward creative living – only determination will see me through it.


Photo Credit: Free People