Where the Heck is Motivation Hiding for Self-Harm Recovery?

October 1, 2013 Jennifer Aline Graham

Finding motivation to stop self-harming can be difficult to find, but here is an idea that can help. Take a look to get your motivation out of hiding.

Whether you are studying for an exam or getting to that therapy appointment, motivation is key. Without motivation, actions wouldn’t be successful. You need motivation to become self-harm free or to lose that ten pounds. So what do you do when you lack the motivation you know you need to succeed?

It’s hard to find motivation, especially when it comes to self-harm. During my self-harm struggles, I couldn’t find real reasons to stop besides those around me telling me to. I wanted to cut, I wanted to make that mark, and even though I knew it wasn’t a healthy coping skill, I didn’t want to stop.

After some time and getting comfortable talking to my therapist, I realized my motivation was writing. If I could spend more time writing instead of scarring up my arms, I could probably write a book. And I did.

Where Can I Find Motivation?

I’ve talked about this in past, but recently I realized my motivation is very up and down. With certain things in my life, I have more than enough motivation. I recently became a Certified Zumba Instructor and after putting down the money for the training, I began going to three to four classes a week. Obviously, by putting down the money, I had motivation to get my butt to classes.

However, the other morning I did not have the motivation to get out of bed and go to a psychiatry appointment. To put it bluntly, I looked at the clock, rolled over and went back to sleep without calling or cancelling the appointment.

That’s what I call bad Karma.

Looking back, I feel more than guilty about this and know I will probably have to pay for the missed appointment via Karma. I realized that waking up is a major problem when it comes to my motivation. If I’m asleep, it takes an awful lot of work to get me up. When it comes to Zumba, I wake up with ease. However, I need to get some kind of motivation for everything else. Even going to work.

Motivation to Stop Self-Harm

For self-harmers, it’s difficult to find the motivation needed to stop cutting or burning or picking. Why? Because we like it. Really, that’s it. It’s like telling a coffee drinker to stop drinking coffee for the rest of their lives. They don’t want to because they like it and like how it makes them feel. Sadly, it’s like telling someone not to look at his or her cell phone for an hour (yes, it’s that tough).

I’ve noticed that when people count the days they do not self-harm, it becomes a way of counting your successes more than failures. Those who have used this as motivation see it as pushing to make it one day further than the last without self-injury. If there is a relapse, start counting again and try to make it further. In truth, I’ve seen this work and the self-harmers I know who’ve tried this grow so proud of their accomplishment.

It’s not easy, but you’ll never know unless you try.

You can also find Jennifer Aline Graham on Google+, Facebook, Twitter and her website is here.

APA Reference
Aline, J. (2013, October 1). Where the Heck is Motivation Hiding for Self-Harm Recovery?, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 18 from

Author: Jennifer Aline Graham

October, 5 2013 at 9:48 pm

I remember when that specific pain brought that certain rush and relief.. I remember leaving the self harm behind. And after that decision I remember thinking about it, craving it:frequently. But I also remember resisting it.. I still resist it. As everyday goes by. Cz I found hope. And I know there's no reason to give myself yet another reminder of bad times. Cz I remember after all the years of doing it, there was always a major feeling of regret and shame.
I just know its not the way..and I'm gonna post about it cz I fucking can. And if there's anyone out there that knows this feel... Dont be afraid to face it... cz all it really does is take you over.. don't let it.

October, 1 2013 at 4:44 am

I've tried counting the days in the past and it does work. Unfortunately I started cutting again but I am in a place right now that I started counting again. It's working again. I have slip ups. But I just start over. I feel like I've accomplished something huge.

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