My Personal Motivation Today
So, I haven’t written a blog in a while and I was thinking about why that was? What was causing my own slow performance in this area? I enjoy writing and look forward to the positive feedback and connections that I make from my writing. The information I share helps others and brings knowledge or reminders to others in our profession. But I just had so many other things on my plate and no matter what, I just wasn’t motivated to do it. This thought process started me looking into motivation and what drives people to do what they do.
We met with our marketing professional last week and I committed to getting this blog written. We meet this morning at 9:00 am and here I am at 6:00 am trying to hammer this out.
In trying to wrap my head around my motivation I found and was reminded of two great resources you may find helpful. First, I watched a famous TED talk this morning by Daniel Pink, the author of Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us. It is about 10 minutes long and worth the time. Here is the link: https://ed.ted.com/featured/LT8oQQTo. In this video, he talks about how human motivations are primarily intrinsic. Money doesn’t motivate people beyond basic tasks. To motivate employees, he argues that these three factors increase performance or just basic compliance: Autonomy (Being self-directed), Mastery (Improving in an area that’s important to us), and Purpose (Doing something meaningful and is important beyond ourselves). This reminded me of a second great resource. I participated in a Christian study several years ago by Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life. Having a purpose and understanding that purpose had been pivotal in my life and my desire to start Lighthouse Therapy LLC. Here is an introduction to the updated book, What On Earth Am I Here For? The Purpose Driven Live Expanded Edition. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S7_K6VCEpWM
These are great resources and I am happy to share them here. But this morning as I write this, the biggest motivator for me wasn’t really any of these. Deep down, I am still driven by these motivators listed above but I was feeling this was more surface and about managing myself. So, I looked a bit further. I wanted to see, as a procrastinator, what motivated me to get up early to write when I could still be comfortably ensconced in my bed. I landed on the blog by Mary C. Lamia, Ph.D. title “How Procrastinators Get Things Done” (https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/intense-emotions-and-strong-feelings/201709/how-procrastinators-get-things-done). Since I don’t have a “boss” directly telling me or giving me a deadline, I found that I am operating under what she describes as a commitment incentive. “Requesting a deadline in circumstances that do not have definite cutoff points creates a motivating interpersonal concern—shame avoidance—such as the possibility of incurring the disappointment or disapproval of a colleague or partner.” This was really it for me today. I did not want to go into a meeting, that I am paying for by the way, and not have the work done that I had committed to last week. So here it is, I hope you found it useful. To me, it is always eye-opening to discover what motivates my behavior and how I can harness my choices to continue to improve and become a better version of myself!