Motivation – the facts

All you need to know about motivation and how to inspire yourself to get things done.

Many believe that a person who is motivated is born with significantly more drive and determination than those who are not. According to experts however, motivation is something you can learn, as well as something that is hot-wired into your system.

Psychologist and business consultant, Paul White explains:

“We do have different temperaments and different personality styles when we’re born, but research shows that clearly our behaviour, personality and motivation can be shaped.

“If you think of the word ‘motivate,’ the root is ‘motive’ – which is a reason to act. When we’re trying to motivate someone we’re trying to give them a reason to act.”

Motivation - the facts

A key factor in shaping our motivation habits is our environment. Living or growing up in chaotic or unpredictable circumstances is particularly unhelpful, as is being in a situation in which everything is done for you.

Cognitive psychologist Shlomo Breznitz says that subjects from these environments are more likely to develop “learned helplessness”, in which they become passive and severely unmotivated.

If you could do with a motivation boost, take a look at the following ideas on how to rediscover drive and determination:

  • Write down your goals – Just by writing down the tasks you want to accomplish, you can make them seem far more achievable. List them in priority order and add pointers about what you need to do to achieve them. This can break them down into smaller actions and bring about inspiration.
  • Get support – Many of us feel more motivated if we are accompanied by a friend. This is because having someone to go running with, or to accompany you to fitness class can provide an important boost in terms of confidence, courage and support.
  • Stay active – Physical activity can significantly improve your energy levels and this will positively impact motivation. Even a brisk 20 minute walk in the morning on the way to work will do wonders for making you feel more energised and ready to start the day.
  • Reward yourself – To stay motivated, promise yourself something special once you reach your goals. If you are losing weight, try to avoid rewarding yourself with food. Instead treat yourself to a special day out or a complementary therapy treatment to relax and unwind.
  • Seek inspiration – Consider investing in self-help books to inspire goals and boost your motivation. You can also find some inspirational videos, quotes and moving speeches on the Internet.
  • Consider life coaching – Many find visiting a life coach can add valuable structure and purpose to their life. A life coach will help to maximise strengths and build upon weaknesses, whilst teaching ways in which you can motivate yourself and keep it up in the long-term. For more information, please see our motivation coaching page.

View and comment on the original Business Mirror article. 

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Written by Tamara Marshall
Written by Tamara Marshall
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