By. Garrett Guzman
“Commitment means staying loyal to what you said you were going to do, long after the mood you said it in has left.”
Motivation and commitment are NOT the same thing. On frequent occasion, I hear fitness “gurus” speak of these terms in the same light. I would actually consider them complete opposites. I’ll explain this further.
Per the dictionary definition, motivation is the reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way. And commitment is the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause, activity, etc. I would actually redefine these terms slightly different. Motivation is the temporary inspiration one gets to perform a certain action, while commitment is the promise ones makes to perform a certain action. My biggest differentiation between the two is that motivation is temporary, while commitment is lasting. Let’s dive into this a little deeper as it relates to our health and fitness.
People often have goals of achieving great things. Whether this is a performance goal, a body composition goal, or perhaps a specific health goal. When they make these goals, they are often extremely motivated. However, over time, this motivation begins to wane. Motivational speakers, quotes, podcasts, music are all great, but it will NOT “motivate” you enough to wake up at 4:30am to go after your goals, day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year. That motivation will NOT help you make those countless additional sacrifices when the going gets tough. So, what can one do to ensure that motivation lasts? It’s not motivation at all, it’s commitment. Unfortunately, in today’s day and age, commitment is something that is seldom honored. A commitment used to mean you were absolutely, 100% going to perform a certain action. If you said you were going to walk 1 mile every day of the week, you walked 1 mile every day of the week. If you said you were going to eat 3 servings of vegetables per day, you ate 3 servings of vegetables per day. Today, commitment is looked at as a goal. I will try to do this; I will try to do that. Guess what? How many failures have come from trying. Far too many! STOP TRYING AND START RE-COMMITTING. Make goals, then make firm commitments that will get you to your goals.
In summarizing, motivation is temporary, commitment is lasting. Make goals, then make specific commitments, 100% honor those commitments, reach said goals, repeat the process with new goals.