Only motivated by this girl

Postby perceptionz » Sun Dec 25, 2016 5:38 pm

I met this girl, and when we were clicking, I was more motivated than ever to chase my dreams, be way more physically appealing, shed my extra body fat, get great grades, everything in my life I wanted to excel at when she was clicking with me.

I see that she's broken. She's extremely shy, and I can just sense how much she's hurting, and I so badly want to fix her and show her how amazing she is, but she refuses to let me in. She shows all signs of interest, but runs when I try engaging with her.

When we broke it off, I cried for 3 weeks straight and couldn't get out of bed. I then numbed myself to her, deleted her number, just tried to convince myself that it was all in my head.

All of my motivation to better myself in the ways I listed and then some was and still is gone.

I know this is a common problem; not being able to better yourself for yourself, but only for someone or something else, but I don't know what it's characterized as. I really need some help as to why this is, what this situation is referred to as, and how I can shift the focus to bettering myself for me because I believe I deserve it and am worthy.

Thanks in advance, and happy holidays.
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Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Sun Dec 25, 2016 7:09 pm

There is no need to search for a label.

You recognize the problem, setting extrinsic goals driven to impress or influence others. You need to set intrinsic goals.

Intrinsic goals are simply setting goals to improve your own performance, regardless of others. Another term is "mastery goals" where you try to improve for the purpose of improving oneself, masterying a skill, etc.

The easiest way is to start with only a few goals and start small. Work on those goals first thing in the morning, when you have the energy. Make it about you.
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Postby calvinTO » Sun Dec 25, 2016 10:31 pm

It's tough when the person with whom you could self-motivate is out of the picture. You recognize this clearly.

As Richard says, no label is needed, ie, this isn't a "condition," like anxiety disorder or something. What it does point to is that you are using someone else to esteem yourself, which is always a false step. Certainly, falling in love makes us feel good and we can use that to improve ourselves. But over the longer term it isn't feasible. You will forever be your own person, separate, with needs and desires whose resolutions must come from within.

Here's what happened to me: I split up with this guy and then later tried to get back together. He had moved on but I realized, too late, that I had made a mistake. I tried everything to reconcile and he wasn't having it. The last time we met he set a boundary -- no more, never, no -- and I was crushed. I went to visit a friend, to cry on his shoulder, and he said to me: Be bigger than this. I was confused.... I replied something along the lines of what does being bigger have to do with my aching heart? He said to find something that you can do that can stand as a sign, if only to yourself, that you will not give in to your worst instincts, ie, self-pity and moaning. I had just quit smoking (as part of my plan to win back this person) and of course I wanted to go back to it because I felt so morose. So I said to myself, I won't. I will honour the situation by not falling back to old coping patterns; and if you've never smoked, trust me, smoking is very powerful.

What happened? I felt lousy.... but every day I shifted energies to not smoking. And "not smoking" became bigger than the suffering over a relationship that (I now realize) was never meant to be. I don't know if this helps -- this idea of being bigger than the situation -- but it sure helped me. I was able to walk away with dignity while also committing to self-improvement and self-love. I've never touched a cigarette since.

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