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How to Inspire Motivation in Others

Updated on February 20, 2008

It can be difficult to watch someone you love make unhealthy lifestyle decisions. You probably want to do something to help this person feel motivated to make some changes. However, you cannot motivate someone else—the motivation needs to come from within each individual person. Plus, a lot of people don’t want to change their habits and styles of living if they think someone is trying to change them. This doesn’t mean you can’t help someone you care about. All it means is that you need to figure out ways to inspire the other person to feel motivated to change.

Working Together: This was presented at a Leadership Institute I attended while in college.  I still find it inspirational.
Working Together: This was presented at a Leadership Institute I attended while in college. I still find it inspirational.

If you want to help someone make healthy lifestyle choices, you need to focus on inspiring them.

There are plenty of things you can do to inspire the person you care about:

Listen: Sometimes you just need to be quiet and listen to what your friend is saying. I know you are tempted to convince your friend to change, but arguing or “pushing” the other person won’t help. By listening and offering encouragement (like: “yes, I had that problem too”), you will probably hear your friend talk him or herself into making the very changes you are encouraging.

Lead by Example: If you really want someone to see the benefits of making healthy lifestyle choices, show them. When your friend sees how positively these changes have impacted your life, it will be easier for him or her to want to make healthier choices too.

If you see your friend struggling with changing his or her lifestyle, share how you dealt with the same difficulties. Be aware that sharing your experiences is different from telling your friend how he or she can do it. Let your friend take what he or she needs out of the experiences you share.

Pursue Pleasure: Basically, nobody wants to change their lifestyle if it means trading something they enjoy for something they don’t. This means that you need to make the healthy choices as fun and pleasurable as possible. When your friend, spouse, or children see you setting an example, and it looks fun or positive, it will be easier for them to join you.

The greatest part about making positive lifestyle choices is that it is a rewarding experience. The good choices tend to lead to people feeling good, so a positive cycle is created. Basically, people will learn how to style their lives in a healthy way.

Please feel free to share your ideas and suggestions by leaving a comment in the box below.


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