Disgust is a Powerful Motivator

Have you ever had one of those ‘look in the mirror moments’ and became disgusted with what you see?  Maybe it’s not an actual mirror. Maybe it happens in a moment of deep thought.  A moment when you realize something isn’t the way it should be.  Or during some physical activity when you realize you can’t do something that you used to be able to do when you were younger and in better shape.  Maybe it’s a realization that your job, or career path, no longer brings you the punch it used to.  Maybe it’s a relationship that you’ve had with an old friend or a spouse that is not heading in the direction that it needs to in order to be successful.  Or maybe it really is that image that you see when you step out of the shower and look in the mirror and wonder what the heck happened to you.

When one of these moments of disgust or profound disapproval happens – what do you do?  Does it bring you down?  Does it make you reach for another beer to further enhance that beer belly that you have worked so hard at developing over the past number of years?  Do you just say screw it and head down the same road in the same vehicle and park in the same parking spot you have used for the past 20 years.  Then sit at the same cubicle for eight hours and then drive home on the same roadway.  Then when you get home you put up with the relationship that continues to head in the wrong direction.  Doesn’t a continuation of this performance pretty much guarantee that the results will be the same?  Results that will continue to provide you with additional disgust.

In the investment world we often see the phrase ‘past performance is not indicative of future results’.  That is in the investment world.  In your world, the real world that we all live in – past performance is totally indicative of future results.  If you are disgusted and not make changes to your own ‘personal portfolio’ – the portfolio that makes you you – then the disgust of the future will not all of a sudden disappear.  It doesn’t matter how many times you tell the universe to make it go away!  It doesn’t work that way.  

One other term that is used in the investment world is compound interest.  Compound interest is the growth that happens on your investment growth.  The compounding effect is like a snowball that you make by hand at the top of the hill.  Then you roll the snowball down the hill and allow the force of gravity to do what it does.  In the right conditions that snowball will grow with each revolution as it rolls.  You don’t add any more snow to the ball it just grows on it’s own.  And with each revolution the snowball gets bigger and as it gets bigger with each revolution the snowball grows larger and larger, you get the picture right!  If you don’t go find some snow and a hill and try it out.  

Well the same thing happens in life.  If you envision the disgust that you are experiencing as a snowball at the top of the hill.  Then let it go and not do anything about it the disgust begins to compound.  It gets larger and larger.  Just like your beer belly!  Or whatever else is disgusting you.  And with each revolution the disgust grows and grows.

So how do you stop the compounding effect of disgust.  Well it doesn’t happen over night.  It may have taken you several years to get to the point of disgust that you are at.  Whatever the disgust may be.  

As the title of this blog states – disgust is a powerful motivator – you can either let it motivate you with a greater compounding of that disgust. Or you can decide to allow it to motivate you in a positive way.  Remember choosing between either positive motivation or negative motivation is a choice that you make, no one makes it for you.  Only the dude looking back at you in the mirror can choose. 

It takes courage to choose to allow disgust to motivate you in a positive way.  Building that courage is huge.  Sometimes though the really challenging part is making that commitment to yourself.  Then the really tough part is sticking with that commitment.  After all – you’ve probably been very successful in the past with breaking that commitment to yourself.  Who would know if you break the commitment to yourself.  As long as you quit looking in that mirror it won’t matter anyway.  It’s looking in that stupid mirror that got you disgusted in the first place!  

The good old stick your head in the sand and watch this beautiful gift of life that has been given to you pass you by.  What a waste.  Could you imagine getting to the Pearly Gates and all you could say upon checking in was – ‘Hey by the way St. Peter – say thanks to God for me for the life that I was given but just wasted’.  Bet that would get you far!  You might be even more disgusted when St. Peter sends you in the other direction.  

When you make that commitment to yourself stick with it.  Even if you have to try several times before you finally pull your head out of the sand, or wherever else you have it shoved.  Allowing disgust to motivate you in a positive way may be like trying to push that snowball up that hill again.  It may not be easy.  In fact the more disgusting it is the tougher it will be to push.  But with each push and with each revolution of that snowball up that hill it does get easier to push.  And as it gets easier to push the progress gets quicker.  

Develop the capabilities that are required for you to succeed with your commitment.  If it’s a new waste line change your eating habits first, then add more physical movement to your day.  Allot of people do the opposite, they go work out hard and then have beer and pizza to celebrate.  The intake is more important than the out-took.  

If it’s a new job or career what will it take for you to do it.  Do you have to grow your knowledge in a different field?  Or maybe you just need to grow your knowledge in the field that you are in.  

If it’s a relationship that is is bringing you disgust then decide if the intake is perhaps greater than the out-took and if it is then make changes.

If you need help work with a personal coach.  Personal coaches exist in all areas of life – not just the gym.  Find one that is qualified and that you can really connect with.  Whatever it takes allow the positive motivation of disgust to move you towards creating a game plan and make the changes to remove that disgust from your life.  And the results will become gratifying to the dude in the mirror.

As those results become more gratifying your confidence will grow.  The disgust that you experienced will be replaced with confidence.  The confidence of achievement.  And the confidence of learning that the disgust that you have been experiencing in the past has helped you grow into the strong and successful person of the today.  

Be Grateful for experiencing that disgust.  And also be Grateful for taking action in a positive manner to remove it from your life.  So that when you arrive at those Pearly Gates you can tell St. Peter that you need to have a meeting with God so that you can fill him in with how you fulfilled the life that was given to you. 

Disgust is the result of extreme dissatisfaction – use that dissatisfaction to light a fire within and turn that dissatisfaction into satisfaction.

— Dwayne Fedoriuk



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