What is Motivation and How to Find Out What Motivates You



What is Motivation

A Motive is a drive that makes an individual act. Motivation is an internal process that makes an individual advance toward an objective. Motivation, similar to intelligence, cannot be observed directly. Rather, motivation can be observed by noting a person's behavior.
Motivation is an internal process. Whether we define it as a drive or a need, motivation is a condition inside us that desires a change, either in the self or the environment. When we tap into this well of energy, motivation endows the person with the drive and direction needed to engage with the environment in an adaptive, open-ended, and problem-solving sort of way (Reeve, 2018).
Motivation is impacted by the fulfillment of needs that are either important for sustaining life or fundamental for prosperity and development. Physiological drive for water, food, and sex serves the human to maintain life and give fulfillment from doing as such.

What Motivates You in Life

Humans are faced with moments in life when their motivation has been at an all-time low. Even highly motivated people feel unmotivated sometimes. However, when laziness creeps into one’s daily life, it will be difficult to achieve much in life. Motivation is one of the differences between successful people and everyone else. Successful people always find the inspiration and drive to keep going when the going gets tough.
Though everyone is motivated, everyone has different reasons for their motivation. Thus, it is essential to recognize and know the differences in motivators so that we don’t just categorize a person not getting motivation from something as unmotivated. Mr. A can be motivated for Money while Mr. B only gets motivated for recognition. A person who is focused on career advancement will be more interested in the title than salary or reward. Therefore, giving more money or gifts will not motivate this kind of person. However, if he is offered a newer title with the same salary, he will be more interested in the title than salary because of advancement matters to them.
People get motivated at some point or time, however, some people are motivated more and long enough than others. Motivation can be a result of the desire to obtain something or as a result of losing something. It is necessary to understand what motivates in life as it will help you in living a happy, successful life.

Why Motivation is Important 

When someone understands his motivation, it gives him precious insights into human nature and thus helps him succeed in life. It makes clear why we set objectives and goals, why we experience emotions (i.e fear, anger, and compassion), why we strive for power and achievement, and our need for intimacy. Finding out about motivation is significant because it encourages us to comprehend where motivation originates from, why it changes, what causes it to increase or decrease, what parts of it can be changed and what part cannot be changed, and provide an answer to why some people work with others only.
Motivation is significant for everybody. It is necessary for survival; we cannot go about with our daily lives smoothly without motivation. Motivation is the existence of purpose and direction to gain life, career, and business goals. Without motivation, life appears not meaningful to individuals. They feel as though they cannot effectively make their life worth living. At this point, the intensity of motivation is the thing that can aid in bringing back their life on course. A little motivation in life can result in outstanding outcomes and the magnificence of how motivation works are such a simple and powerful instrument in any accomplishment you attempt.
Motivation can help you in the area of;
1. Identifying goals; motivation helps you to identify your goals because goals come due to the need to change something in your life. You may not be happy about some aspect or result of your life and try to change for better, you will, therefore, identify what you desire and set a goal to accomplish it. Or it may be a desire to improve the result you are getting from your effort. This requires motivation that will adversely inspire the goal.
2. Prioritization; regardless of what you want to accomplish. You need to be committed and focused to achieve an effective result. However, time and energy are limiting factors. This then requires prioritization to focus the energy on the most important activity to achieve the maximum result. Motivation will be the tool that will help you to determined which activity should be prioritized and which one should follow the prioritized. 
3. Action; everybody can set up objectives and goals they plan to achieve either in a short time or a long time. But these goals and objectives will only have value on paper if it is not yet implemented. You need to be committed and take decisive and effective action to be able to bring those goals and objectives to reality. And this is where the difference lies between some of the successful and less successful. Successful ones are known to take decisive, consistent, and effective decisions than their counterpart. Motivation is the key that pushed the successful ones forward in implementing their plans.
4. Overcoming setbacks; Plans, goals, and objectives are bound to face obstacles on the way. Some people cannot withstand these setbacks and easily gave up due to a lack of motivation. But when there is motivation, you will endure the obstacles and continue to push yourself forward to accomplishing the task. 
5. Staying the course; it is easy to lose sight of your objectives while on the course of accomplishing. With this, you will never reach your goal but when you are highly motivated, you will put yourself back to track in case you are deviating because your eyes will be on the result and prize that you will be afraid of losing. 

Common Factors that Drive People in Life

Some factors drive people to do what they do. It is what keeps them to give their best even when the path seems difficult, this factor keeps energizing them to keep moving towards their goals.
Some of these factors include;
1. Recognition 
Recognition is the formal or informal, timely acknowledgment of a person’s behavior or action, effort, or result that support his/her goals and values, and which has been beyond normal expectations. Appreciation is a basic human need. People value appreciation expressed through recognition of their good work. When someone's work is valued, their productivity and satisfaction level rises, and they are inspired to improve or maintain good work.
Recognition and praise are essential for people. People want to be valued and respected by others for their work or contribution. Everyone sought recognition as an individual or member of a group and to feel a sense of achievement for their contribution or work well done. 
 Recognition is a non-monetary form of reward. Thus, it has nothing to do with money. It is to witness, approve, and appreciate the positive contributions of the people, which makes them realize that they are noticed and that their works are valued and appreciated. Recognition is the factor that drives people to do what they do, they just want to be noticed, recognized and appreciated for the work they do 
2. Money and Rewards
People are motivated to work to earn money but for others, money is a means to an end. Most people have the thought that all they want is money, but money is not the end product that they want. People strove to drive bigger, unique, and more luxurious cars. 
We live in a material society where everyone is looking to get the newest smartphone, the latest fashion, or the sweetest car. All these revolve around money, which is why money and rewards are an effective motivator for people. People worked in different jobs or reduce their standard of living just to save money. Thus, money is a common factor that drives people to do what they do. People get motivated by money to give most of their time of the day for work. For instance, for money, a person is ready to spend up to 15 hours a day at work. 
3. Desire to be the Best
People strive to be in anything they do. It is the ingredient that pushed them forward through hard and tough times. They fight hard to best and are afraid of losing. The fear of losing compel them to practice day and night to improve and develop themselves to compete and beat their opponent. This is evident in different aspects of life. For instance, students spend their valuable time reading, writing, and practicing to be the best within their peers. He/she will be ready to sacrifice his sleep for a test he/she has tomorrow morning. Also, in sport, the athletes spend much time practicing to be prepared for that next match or competition they have. 
The desire to be the best is one of the motives for hardworking, practicing in sport, schools, offices, and other aspects of life. Some people find it difficult to be number two in their lives. They work hard and they fight hard because they hate to lose. Because their willingness and desire to be the best is high, they are willing to give their all through hard and tough times to be the best. They sacrifice their time, weekend, night, and day to become the best.
3. Helping the Others
Helping others is another factor that drives people to do what they do. All they want is to see changes in people’s lives and they want to see a better future for the coming generation. They gain a sense of accomplishment when they contribute their quota for the betterment of all. This sense of accomplishment is a feeling that is so priceless. It is only gained when you impact lives.
This is evident in volunteering works, people volunteer their time, effort, and energy to impact others’ lives, not because of money or fame but that is where true happiness comes from. Some people sacrifice their lives to save other peoples’ lives. 
4. Power and Fame
Some people are motivated to do what they do for fame and power. They are the people who aspire to be leaders and they are highly driven by these factors. As such, they do all things possible to gain power and fame. They want to lead people and companies. They want to influence others and give commands and also want to be respected.
Politicians are a good example of this. They can go to any length to campaign and gain the acceptance of people. They spend the wealth they amassed for long in a day to win elections and be a leader. Some even go to the length of engaging in un-godly acts all in the name of getting power and fame because this is what is driving them. 
6. The Passion
Passion is another thing that is driving people. If you have a passion for a particular thing, you will spend your most time on that because you derive satisfaction there. If you are passionate about a thing, the money will not be your focus, you will be ready to dedicate yourself to it and do that work very well. 
Some people are successful because they are working in the area they are passionate about. When you work in the area you are passionate about, you tend to gain more results. Passion is what makes someone work hard and wake up early than others. If you are passionate about something, you will always be thinking about it. Passion is very important because it drives people to do what they do. Those who are passionate about something have more enthusiasm, energy, and charisma. Someone passionate loves what they are doing very much, that they sleep, eat, and drink it. The rewarding thing is that when you follow your passion, you will enjoy the journey along the way.
People that make an impact in the world and the world do so by following their passion. This means deciding consciously to give up some enjoyable activities to channel your energy on the most important activities (what you are passionate about). 

How to Find Out What Motivates You

1. You can do it for free
If you are passionate about something, the money will not be your utmost concern, you will be ready to spend your time, energy or even money to do it. You will always be thinking about it. You will be looking for any volunteering opportunity in the area you are motivated about. Some people are fortunate to get paid along the way doing what they are passionate about while others are not. If you are motivated about something, doing it for free will not be a problem for you. 
2. It Is Always on Your Mind
Another factor that tells you what you are motivated about is it will always be on your mind. You cannot stop thinking about it. It will be the last thing you will think of and also the first thing to wake up with. When you are around people, it will be the topic you will like to be discussing. You will not be bored discussing it and you will feel comfortable on the topic. 
2. You Get Lost in Learning
The activity you are motivated about will take much of your time engaging in it without getting bored. You will spend much time learning it with enthusiasm and will always be looking for more areas to learn more. You can dedicate the whole day or even night engaging in it because it will be where you will find joy and serenity.
4. You Can List It in the Most Fulfilling Times of Your Life
If you are motivated about something, you will be proud of yourself to show it to others. It will also be on the list of your accomplishment. Your CV will have it listed as an accomplishment. 
It is a good tip to list your activities from time to time and also review it to see the frequent activity that does pop up on the list. This tells you more about the most motivating activity that you cannot get attached to. You can take time to practically engage in the activities that constantly pops up on your list and see how you feel doing them, from there you can tell which one you are most comfortable and happy doing it. 
5. You Would Do It If No One Was Watching
When you are motivated about something, you will do it sincerely without looking for other people’s acceptance. It is the motive that drives you and not public eye or recognition. There is the reason or why you are doing it in the first place. You do certain things just because it is the norm in society to do it and so it is defined by society. But when you are motivated to do something, you will care less about society and strove to do it

Alhassan Babawusa

Freelancer writer, editor and proofreader.


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