Do you feel like you’re living your life on autopilot?
You wake up, you do your work, you watch Netflix or scroll through social media during your leisure, and you go to sleep.
And this goes on full repeat — day in, day out.
If this sounds familiar, you might be just going through the motions.
In other words, you could be allowing external circumstances to dictate your life instead of you taking full control.
Humans as we are, it can be easy to fall into this trap. However, if you’re determined to succeed, you must stop going through the motions and start living an intentional life.
What “going through the motions” means
In the most basic sense, just going through the motions refers to a person’s tendency of simply “riding the waves” and just going along to wherever the circumstances will take them.
When you’re just going through the motions, you go about your day doing your same old routine with no sense of purpose, enthusiasm, and interest.
By doing this and “simply living,” you may be able to survive, but it’s not a sustainable lifestyle in the long run.
Top reasons why just going through the motions can negatively affect you
Going through the motions is not a bad thing at all. In some cases, it works great – especially when you’re still trying to figure out how to manage your life.
But it gets detrimental once you get too used to it.
Here are some of the reasons why:
It kills your motivation and inspiration
More often than not, an opportunity inspires us to act. But when we’re just going through the motions, our senses seem to shut down.
When we’re on autopilot, the things we do each day are usually routinary and are not necessarily aligned with our personal goals. And this will never create a life that we love. Instead, it will create a life of mediocrity that is neither fulfilling nor inspiring.
Because here’s the thing: doing the same things every day gets you the same results. There will come a time that the routine you love so much will discourage you from going above and beyond.
When you work with a lack of passion and inspiration, you allow great opportunities to pass you by. This can cause you to miss promotions and any chances to climb the corporate ladder. Or, you would never be interested in building a business that you could call your own — even if you’re fully capable of doing so.
By just going through the motions, you hinder yourself from achieving success.
It might cause depression.
If you’ve been feeling down lately and can’t quite figure out why, then it might be your daily routine.
You probably know this already, but living a robotic existence — wherein most of your time is spent doing mundane tasks in an uninspired manner — can be bad for you.
But did you know that it could be responsible for causing depression?
When you spend your days with no purpose, you’re putting yourself at risk of depression. Because one day, you might find yourself dissatisfied with what you’ve accomplished with your life. You might even begin to feel empty inside.
4 ways you can stop just going through the motions
Breaking out of this self-destructive cycle is not easy – especially if you’ve been doing this for years.
But, there are several ways you can do to address this head-on so you can stop just going through the motions and start taking control of your life. Here are some of them:
1. Don’t be too complacent.
When your everyday life isn’t challenging, it can be easy to become complacent.
Being indifferent to how you spend your day can cause you to be stuck in a self-induced standstill. And when you do, you hardly make any progress.
To interrupt this pattern against mediocrity, you must develop a mindset shift. You must fight back against complacency.
To do this, you can practice self-forgiveness and embrace making mistakes. Allow yourself to try new things, even if it means making mistakes that you can learn from.
Train your curiosity and give your mind the freedom to explore new ideas. Above all, remind yourself that life is too short – to get stuck in a loop your entire waking life.
2. Set goals and follow a gameplan.
When you’re just going through the motions, you are more likely to lose sight of your goals.
Furthermore, being complacent causes you to be “too comfortable” in your current position in life, hindering you from wanting to seek any improvement in your career, business, academics, and even in your relationships.
Don’t go any deeper into that rabbit hole. Take the time to sit down and re-evaluate your life. Ask yourself these questions:
- What are your dreams and goals in life?
- Why do you have these goals?
- Will these goals help you achieve the life you envisioned for yourself?
- What can you do to make things happen?
Having goals and a plan to follow will give you a sense of direction and laser-like focus so you can uncover opportunities to reach your goals.
And when you do, you will soon get out of the loop – of living mindlessly and just going through the motions.
3. Live in the now.
You have control over your life. So, do the right thing. Make the decision — and take the steering wheel of your life!
If you want to change for the better, strive to be present in everything that you do.
Partake in activities that uplift your spirits and allow you to focus on yourself.
Go for a walk, enjoy a cup of coffee or tea, read a book, meditate, and appreciate the time you spend with your friends and family.
Nothing gets you out of the loop better than activities that make you happy and whole. So, go out there and take the time to enjoy life!
4. Live for yourself.
Your life is your own. You aren’t supposed to live your life for somebody else.
So, stop comparing yourself to others. Don’t dwell deep into how other people expect you to live your life.
When you get rid of these unnecessary thoughts that cloud your mind, you will start to know yourself better. And soon enough, you’ll appreciate life even more.
So, live life to the fullest! You have every right to be happy and free!
Take the steering wheel and regain control
In the back of your head, you know what you want. You have a picture of your ideal life, ideal career, or even the ideal weekend.
But if you’re living the motions, you might not be able to get there. You won’t be able to live that picture.
When you’re just going through the motions, it may not be easy to get out. But if you really want to experience a better life, you need to adopt a healthier and more positive mindset, so you can focus on yourself and your happiness more.
Trust me; all the effort will surely be worth it!
Now, it’s up to you.
Have you been just going through the motions yourself or know somebody who does? Let us know your thoughts below!
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