Friday, March 26, 2010

Find Your Motivators


What gets you out of bed in the morning, makes you go to work, or inspires you to clean your house? The simple answer is motivation, but a more precise answer is each individual motivator. You get out of bed for that cup of coffee, or because its better than listening to a buzzing alarm clock. You go to work so you can provide for your kids. You clean your house because you in-laws are coming over. These are the behind the scenes motivators. Motivators are the reason that we do the things we do.

Suppose you have a co-worker who is notoriously late to work. Even with an important early morning meeting, he or she is 15 minutes late. Now suppose there's a $8,000.00 incentive for them to arrive on time each day for a week. I gaurantee that same person will find a way to be there on time. The difference in this scenario is the money motivator. Normally, the co-worker prefers the extra sleep, or the relaxed commute to being punctual. Negative motivators can also have the same affect. A boss could say "If you're not on time every day this week then you are fired!"

Everyday we do hundreds of tasks without fully understanding the motivators behind them. By taking the time to identify these motivators it helps us to validate our actions. If you don't want to take out the trash, find the motivator. Would you rather live with flies and the pungent smell of rotting food wafting through your house? Of course not, so take out the trash. Are you dreading doing your laundry? You'll be the one forced to go out in public looking like Steve Urkel because you ran out of clean close that fit. Are you avoiding the gym? It may be harder to avoid your swim suit this summer or the health hazards later in life. Do you hate sitting in traffic? Try sitting at home unemployed. There are reasons why we do things that we don't enjoy. If there wasn't, the action would be a wasted effort and meaningless.

Like a dog that sits for a treat, a job hunter dressing up for an interview, or the friendliness of a car salesmen, there are motivators behind all actions. Learn what your motivators are and these actions will have meaning. Chores and hardships will become logical.

Please feel free to comment, your input motivates me to continue writing articles.

1 comment:

J. David Boyd said...

Extremely correct. Most of us go through life having no idea what their personal motivators are. It is an important thing to learn, and you should delve deeper into it.

For example, myself, I have always been more motivated by time than money. I'm okay with being 'not rich', as long as I have enough 'personal time' to feel that I have space in my life.