Out of all the skills and disciplines that we can learn to harness on a daily basis, motivation is arguably the most powerful. Being motivated allows us to claw back those negative thoughts and that temptation to give up in search of more productivity and success. Of course, being able to hone the power of motivation isn’t so simple; you don’t just snap your fingers and things fall into place. You need to be able to actually understand what powers your own motivations, and what can inspire you personally to get through the day.
According to a 2013 article on ISHN.com, motivation is one of the leading factors behind success in business. Discussing the benefits of an incentive program, they speak about the massive strengths that providing an extra bonus for everyone at the company to try and achieve.
In this sector of life alone, it’s easy to see how motivation could play a key role in performance; if your staff are motivated to work for you to benefit the company (and themselves) then you will see greater productivity and, in return, success.
Studies in motivation have been going on for many years, as generations of scholars have looked to try to master the reasoning’s behind why we can get ourselves active and ready for one thing, yet other tasks can drive us to desperation. One of the most prominent studies into motivation came in 1955, when David Clarence McClelland investigated the power of motivation in-depth.
So, what do modern theories and facts tell us about motivation? How does it work, and how can we all make our lives richer through the process?
- By using motivations, it’s believed that you can use it as a predictor to what the most likely future action by a group or individual will be. Because a motive – the reason for doing something – can be a strong indicator to help explain behavior, you can use the behavior of others to discover their motivations. This two-way street, of sorts, can be an excellent way to start building a more successful model in the future about how you can motivate yourself and others – how do they act?
- Typically, our motives in life will determine a large part of our personality both in social functions and in life. Who do you want to be seen as? If it’s the life and soul of the party, then you will likely try to alter your personality in social functions to suit this role you wish to take on. Our motives can drive us to be almost entirely different people, in the right situation and when we demand something enough in ourselves.
- A base need for power and competition among others are a key drive behind our motivations – the motivation in yourself may be to earn more money, but who is it for? Is it for yourself and your family, or your ego? Your motivations may seem pure but they could be driven by alternative paths you never considered.
- Motives can be split up into three key categories – biological, psychological and social. Biological motivations can be things like the need to eat or to sleep. Social needs tend to be built up over the course of your life, and are far harder to be defined as every person has different ambitions. The psychological motivations we have, though, are typically built on the exploration or discovery of something we never knew anything about – these are persistent emotions that we carry throughout our lives.
The majority of our motivations might be blind to even ourselves – or at least, the underlying factors behind these motivations. Whatever you decide to do with that mindset, you need to make sure that it’s for the right reasons. Motivations can be a powerful tool, but if you are motivated by the wrong things it can lead you down a dark path – make sure that you try to understand just how powerful motivation can be as both a positive and negative influence on your life and your mindset.