What’s Your Motivation?

As 2016 approaches there is a sense of new beginning on the horizon. We start to wonder, what is it that excites us about the New Year? What goals or resolutions are we going to make? How are we going to change our habits and patterns to fulfill all those great intentions to; lose weight, eat healthy or get to the gym?

Let’s look at what motivates us. It’s called intrinsic motivation when people act without any obvious external rewards. Those external rewards can be money, power, praise, fame, etc. Being intrinsically motivated means we simply enjoy an activity and see it as an opportunity to learn something new. We are excited to develop our potential and often describe our intentions as wanting to grow or learn or explore.

When our motivation is authentic we have more excitement and confidence about the activity. We are able to enhance our performance, persistence and our creativity.

To explore aspects of our internal motivation we can ask ourselves:

• What gives me a sense of fulfillment?
• What excites me about my future?
• What would a great day at work look like?
• How can I consistently look for new challenges?

Some people have a combination of both intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. They want a sense of learning and fulfillment as well as achieving monetary rewards; essentially they want the best of both worlds.

Be curious about what motivates you and how you feel when you are confronted with a challenge. So when you set your alarm to go to the gym and its dark and rainy outside and you went to bed late and could really use another hour of sleep, what will you be saying to yourself to get out of bed? That internal dialogue that says, “time to get up, you can do this, you will feel great after that work out”, needs to kick in fast before the, “I’ll do it tomorrow”, voice appears.

If you want to delve further into exploring your motivation, try the following questions:

• What would a positive sense of well-being look/feel like?
• What inspires you and gives you joy?
• When do you feel in control and recognize you have choices?
• Who is supporting you to reach your goal?
• What values are you considering to help you make decisions?
• What to do think is your higher purpose?
• How is your goal connected to your higher purpose?
• How would you rate your average daily emotional energy?
• How do you feel about this new opportunity to learn and grow?
• How are you mindfully managing your feelings, thoughts and values?

Reflect on your responses and be curious how your goals and resolutions for 2016 can be modified to mirror what’s really important to you.

Make it a great year! Let me know how I can support you to reach your goals.

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© 2009 Rosemary Smyth & Associates