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Life Is About Momentum, Not Motions

Life is about momentum“Going through the motions…” It is a phrase we hear maybe too often. It seems to mean we are just moving through activities without much thought or meaning. It may be like sleepwalking through a job or zoning out at home.

Going through the motions is not a positive indication of living a life fully and completely.

The other side of this is sometimes we are in constant motion, and we feel motion equals momentum. It does not. Continuous motion can create an illusion of momentum. The danger is we may be just running in place, turning up the speed rather than digging in to gain traction.

While going through the motions is drudgery, continuous motion wears us out.

Neither one delivers meaningful actions or, more importantly, meaningful results.

What to do then? It is unique for each individual, especially since we are all distinctive in our personality and circumstances. No matter, there is always a choice in what we can do within our context.

Here are a few thoughts on how to sort through what to do if we are experiencing this motion sickness.

Thought 1:  Move on.

Although this can be challenging to do at times, if drudgery is our daily experience, then we need to find a different opportunity. This should not be done whimsically or haphazardly, but thoughtfully. Jumping to just jump is just another form of unproductive motion. Dig deep within to determine what your calling is and then plan out your next step. Make your step a positive motion forward.

Thought 2: Stop moving for 15 minutes in the morning and in the afternoon.

There is continuous motion all around – phones ringing, texts arriving, and activities growing. It is the increasing volume as a day unfolds. We need to breakaway and find a quiet spot for 15 minutes in the morning and in the afternoon to get away and capture some silence. Taking two quarter breaks during our two halves of the day bring some rest and renewal. It gives us a chance to catch our breath, re-gain our center before continuing with the work to be done.

Thought 3: Identify the mile markers in your motions.

If we feel the continuous motion yet don’t feel the progress, then we need to place some mile markers to indicate a positive direction forward. As we drive down most roads, we can see our progress, if we take the time to notice. We see the green mile markers along the way. We should do the same in our life. They should be a mix of small and significant ones. When we reach some, we need to do a little victory dance and celebrate our movement forward.

Life is too short to waste our motions or lack purposeful forward movement. When all motion stops, our life should represent all that was possible.

There is momentum to life, but it requires traction to roll with meaning.

What advice do you have on how to keep your motions in-check and momentum purposeful?

Jon Mertz

Jon Mertz

Jon Mertz is one of the Top 100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business and is a leadership populist, writing to empower Millennial leaders. When we share experiences rather than focus on differences, we realize a thin difference between two generations and a vast opportunity exists to create a big leadership story.
Jon Mertz
Jon Mertz

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  • KateNasser

    Jon,
    In your trademark imagery, you have given one of the best descriptions of balance between change and stasis I have ever read.

    Very few people realize the negative side to resisting change — “drudgery wears them out”.  Conversely, too much motion can create “motion sickness”.

    Many leaders could benefit from your analogy.  Those that think they must keep changing create what I call “change fatigue” and I agree with you — motion sickness!


    Here’s a related post:
    Leaders, Are You Confusing Change Resistance and Change Fatigue?

    Your story telling in this post speaks the truth with power and brevity.  Bravo.

    Great post.
    Kate

    • http://www.thindifference.com/ Jon M

      Kate,

      Thanks so much for your very kind words! You are right that your post about “change fatigue” aligns very well with this, especially as it relates to being in constant motion with no real progress forward. Thanks for highlighting this; it will add significantly to the conversation.

      Again, I appreciate your words of support and am grateful for all that you do in promoting thoughtful leadership practices.

      Jon

    • http://www.thindifference.com/ Jon M

      Kate,

      Thanks so much for your very kind words! You are right that your post about “change fatigue” aligns very well with this, especially as it relates to being in constant motion with no real progress forward. Thanks for highlighting this; it will add significantly to the conversation.

      Again, I appreciate your words of support and am grateful for all that you do in promoting thoughtful leadership practices.

      Jon

  • http://www.careerwithonlinedegrees.com/ Career Online Degrees

    Hey Jon!

    I must congratulate on how you explained about life’s Momentum & Motion. The Voice Of Experience speaks throughout your article. Hats Off!

    • http://www.thindifference.com/ Jon M

      Thank you! I appreciate your feedback. Have a great day!

  • @Proverbsandbiz

    This is a great reminder, Jon! I especially like the suggestion of two quarter breaks: one in the morning and one in the afternoon. It’s so easy to get caught up in whatever chaos the day brings. Those breaks are so important in order to rest our brains, recompose ourselves and make sure we are not veering from the path.

    • http://www.thindifference.com/ Jon M

      Thank you for your comment and feedback. I have really tried to do this each day now. I get up and go for a walk around the building or just close my door and think. The 15 minute break refreshes my energy and perspective. Grateful for your comment!