Motivation Doesn't Work. You Need This Instead. Work in Sports podcast E145

Life isn't like the movies. Motivation is temporary. Instead of waiting for inspiration to come from someone else, try this instead.  

Hi everybody, I’m Brian Clapp Director of Content for and this is the Work in Sports podcast.

It’s the first Monday episode of the year 2019 – which means I am obligated to set the tone in this episode for what you can expect from me and the rest of the crew at in the coming year.

Here goes – I’m going to be more raw and honest than ever. Why? It’s not to become some shock jock, quite to opposite, it’s because I’m really sick and tired of the crappy superficial advice that floats around the internet, and I believe with all of my heart, we need our content to go deeper and even more honest and real..

You guys and gals listening are, in my eyes, the elite future of this industry, because you a driven to learn and advance. You should be proud of that fact, but the work hasn’t stopped yet, there is still much to do and much to accomplish.

I know my pattern is that on Mondays I answer a fan question, and I love these sessions, but today I want to go a slightly different direction. I want to cut to the bone a little bit and explore something that has been really frustrating me lately.

It’s the concept of external motivation.

I go on my linkedin page and I see post after post from people who call themselves keynote speakers, and motivational speakers and they are all sharing and serving up bite sized nuggets of motivation. Cute quips and modified cliches that are supposed to set you on your path to joy today.

I’m sorry – it just doesn’t work that way.

Stick with me for a second – I am the biggest Rocky fan you’ll find. I watch every movie, I cry, I get inspired, I do push ups, I vow to get myself into rock star shape every movie. And then, my kid comes over and says “Dad, Nathan pushed me!” and the moment is gone. I’m on to real life. Or my boss calls and says “hey I need you to work on this project” and that sense of desire, that fire within is pushed back deeper and deeper.

The idea that someone else can spark true lasting change in you is a wish and a prayer, it is not a plan. You need your motivation to come internally, and you need an actual executable plan to achieve your goals.

If I sat down after every Rocky movie and drew myself up a work out plan, and carved out a time in my schedule each day, and I downloaded all the rocky music and I committed to doing something with my motivation – well that can work. But that is the plan working, not the momentary burst of energy that comes from a speech or a movie or a quote.

So what is your plan?

That’s what you need to set your mind on right now – what is your plan? HOW are you going to reach your goal?

Not just that you are motivated to reach it, not just that you are inspired to go far… HOW are you going to do it? What steps are your going to take, what micro decisions are you going to make?

For example, let’s say I read an article about a podcast host who grew his audience from 100,000 to 1 million listeners yearly – and for a moment I felt motivated and inspired by that possibility.

That’s great, but now I need to form a plan.

Which could look like this:

  1. Connect with more sports industry thought leaders on LinkedIn – 5 per week.
  2. Learn more graphic design skills to promote our content – by February
  3. Grow our email list 25% to help with promotion – by March
  4. Develop a media kit for the podcast
  5. Create a podcast hype video – by February
  6. Learn more social media marketing techniques by taking a class and listening to webinars – by June

These are just a few steps of a plan that I can put in place to reach my goal – it isn’t enough to feel motivated. It isn’t enough to make a new years resolution. You have to create the steps to get you there.  

Motivation in temporary. Form a plan.

Don’t get me wrong, motivation can be the spark to set things in motion. And, the quips and quotes can be very effective reminders to get you back on track… but you need the actual track…and that is your personal plan.

I have a list at our backdoor, it’s our family mission statement – we worked on it as a team and came up with the principles of our family. I see it every single day and it’s a great reminder of who we want to be – so don’t take the message from this that you shouldn’t have quotes that ground you and remind you of your goals… that’s all good! But it isn’t enough by itself… you need a plan to really LIVE it and hit the goal.

Work on that. Work on your plan.

And heck – if you want an accountability partner – use our Work in Sports podcast group. Post your 2019 plan on there and we will all hold you accountable to it.

Ok what else do we have coming up this week – an incredible interview with Mailynh Vu Cleveland Indians Assistant Director of Talent Acquisition – I don’t care if you don’t want to work in baseball, Mailynh shares hardcore advice for what people hiring in the sports industry are looking for and you need to tune into that episode.

Also our Facebook LIVE session this week – Thursday 7:30pm EST live from our Work in Sports facebook page –and then open it up to your sports career focused questions!

Thanks as always for listening and I appreciate every one of you!

By Brian Clapp | January 07, 2019
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