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Discover What Motivates You

Updated on September 10, 2015

The Power of Purpose - The Link to Motivation

From Boredom to Achievement

Ever watch a toddler when they are fretful for what seems to be no real reason? Parents quickly find that distracting an infant or young child is one way to avoid fretfulness. At the other end of the spectrum, lies older adults who are retired. They go through a period of an ultimate sense of freedom that quickly deteriorates to boredom and feelings of lack of purpose. When these feelings are prolonged, they usually lead to mental depression and physical illness. Between boredom and achievement lies purpose. Purpose is that most powerful sense of motivation, hopefulness and reaching goals.

The Power of Purpose

We've all seen the power of purpose first hand during the Olympic games. We've also seen it among top athletes, dancers, gymnasts, musicians, singers and artists. When you watch a famous coloratura soprano ascend to the highest note, you see her drive and purpose clearly. The power of purpose shouldn't be understated. It is the machine that drives successful people and those who are goal-oriented. Purpose is the basic motivator for human achievement. The quantity of purpose depends on the goals and specific achievements the individual has in mind.

Life Without Purpose

Each human is born into a particular early childhood environment. Yet, from the most humble environments, come the greatest achievers. Thus, money is not a factor in the power of purpose. A sense of personal investment in talents and skills is the basis for a well-purposed life. The analogy of purpose might be an acorn that can grow into a mighty oak tree one hundred times the size of the tiny acorn from whose humble beginnings it grew.

How Do I Find Purpose in Our Lives?

In order to find a sense of purpose, we must hone our mental cognizance, block out the usual white noise in the background and allow our minds to lead us to those tenuous urges that signal the onset of achievement. All too often, individuals robotically perform duties in their daily lives, never really examining the purpose behind them. These individuals begin to grow bored with the ordinaryness and soon are repulsed by having to get out of bed each day. This should be a warning signal that the individual has not properly evaluated their choices and actions. Now, some may say they have limited choices. That's true. Yet, those limited choices are merely superficial evaluations of deeper possibilities.

For example, each time an individual learns a new skill or stretches their talents, they are edging closer to a new choice. And it is also true, some individuals are born with natural talents. Imagine if they didn't have any motivation to develop those talents? They would join the army of "never beens."

To find the core of purpose in your life, it's necessary to know what you do best, why you do it better than anyone else and how you can parlay that into an achievement that grants self-satisfaction and a sense of purpose. You will, however, need to stock up on motivation.

"I feel so demotivated" - The Cry of The Purposeless

We've heard it numerous times from a wide range of individuals who are talented and skilled. Yet, they lose their motivation. For these people, they have only momentarily lost their sense of purpose. Once they rediscover why they made a specific choice, they become distracted from overriding feelings of demotivation and purposelessness.

Writers suffer this peculiar syndrome most often. The refer to it as "Writer's Block." But, it's less a block than a signal their creative juices are running dry and need to be replenished. Design engineers and those in research and development find that forcing creativity doesn't work either. Here is that point when distraction can be a creative person's best ally and, sometimes, also a source of information. Guard against allowing your creative well to run dry. Take a break in increments to refill your creative well without forcing ideas. Try attending a group meeting or attending a motivational program. Take what you like from these distractions as needed and leave the rest.

Discover What Motivates You

Individuality plays a huge role in how to discover what motivates you. The motivations that urge some may not have the same effect in others. Motivation is a "want to" rather than a "have to" issue. Open the doors to discovering what motivates you by first wanting to approach the world as a "wide eyed" individual who finds "wonder" in those things others may not notice. This is the treasure trove from whence motivation comes. When your eyes are wide open, you view life from the spectrum of limitless possibilities. When you choose linear vision, it's less possible to see the potential in even the most mundane things.

The ROI of Discover What Motivates You

There's no doubt that learning what motivates you has a huge return on investment. Practice motivation discovery often. Soon, it becomes a handy method of avoiding mental and physical "downtime."

For example, let's say that a hobby like flower arranging or building classic model cars is a good distraction. Why not make best use of these hobbies by incorporating them into your sense of motivation? When the motivational well runs dry, there's an outside hobby or craft that can help replenish the creativity well.

If being with others is a good distraction from feelings of boredom, purposelessness and lack of motivation, try spending time with long lost friends or relatives. Still others find their best motivation comes from time alone. This works well if the goals set don't require solitude. A walk on the beach or stroll in a local park or even a few hours in a library gives an individual a sense of balance.

To Motivate Others, Motivate Yourself First

Ever wonder why there are so many motivational speakers who seem to easily motivate others? Who motivates them when their creativity well runs dry? Very likely, other motivators in their field. They are just as likely to revisit their earlier studies to recoup a sense of purpose.

To motivate others, it's important to motivate yourself first. Great motivators spend very little time focusing on motivating others. Rather, they choose to "join" their subjects in activities that become contagious and infectious enthusiasm. Coaches find their students teach them as much as they teach their students to continue on to greater achievements. This is a balanced approach to motivation: To enjoy a free and easy exchange of ideas, activities, goals and achievements.

Enjoy Your Motivation

Attitude counts heavily when motivations run low. Recognize the purpose for what you do, the drive needed to accomplish your goals and then, go forward enjoying the motivation derived from the particular job or activity you've chosen, based on liking what you chose.

The old saying, "If you like what you do, you'll never work," is inspiring and accurate. An individual who chooses business ownership must first like business enough to feel motivation in every fiber of his/her being. Most businesses today fail because the owner didn't have long-term liking for all aspects of business, ups, downs and everything in between. To motivated people, failure is an option. Lack thereof only proves fear an dislike for the choice made. Motivated people understand that failure teaches and stretches the limits of their truest sense of purpose.

So, three things for you to do to discover your motivation:

1. Learn and study your skills and talents

2. Discover how much you like the choices you make

3. Learn the fine art of distraction to attract inspiration and creativity




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    • rodrigo sebidos profile image

      Rodrigo Sebidos 20 months ago from Zone2 Brgy.Guadalupe, Baybay City, Leyte, Philippines

      Nice hub Eleanore, related to it, Is the motivation the same with Inspiration? if so, which comes first?

    • Ewent profile image
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      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 20 months ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      Great question. It's like the old axiom: Which came first, the chicken or the egg.

      In my experience, inspiration is often based on fleeting ideas in the stream of one's consciousness. It wouldn't be easy to motivate ourselves to be inspired. I think of it this way, I inspired by ideas that motivate me to act on those ideas.

      Inspiration comes from a very different level of consciousness than motivation. I have no doubt some amazing individuals can motivate their inspiration and inspire their motivations. Not sure if this is an articulate answer. Probably an answer that requires meditation.

      It's great, isn't it? A single question like yours can lead to meditating on a number of possible answers.

    • rodrigo sebidos profile image

      Rodrigo Sebidos 20 months ago from Zone2 Brgy.Guadalupe, Baybay City, Leyte, Philippines

      You know I was really inspired by your thoughts, thinking that motivation and inspiration is one. in life, there are events we experienced (visual) that inspire us and at the same time motivates us? is there a oneness to this? or a different level of consciousness?

    • Ewent profile image
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      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 20 months ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      Interesting and amazingly insightful question. Very likely, a physicist might say that inspiration and motivation are on different levels of consciousness due to the order in which they occur.

      Human oneness is really more like a kaleidoscope. It takes many elements to make one whole. These elements are mental, physical, spiritual, metaphysical and emotional. Each of these creates the picture of oneness in humans. Oddly, each of these can and do inspire and motivate, whether separately or in those rare instances when all of these elements function on "all cylinders."

      Most humans are too heavily invested in their emotions for their own good. Such a saturation of emotions prohibits the freedoms of the physical, mental, spiritual and metaphysical to influence decisions.

    • rodrigo sebidos profile image

      Rodrigo Sebidos 20 months ago from Zone2 Brgy.Guadalupe, Baybay City, Leyte, Philippines

      Talking of elements, can spiritual consciousness transcend to help those who are emotionally disturbed? Does the level of consciousness can be inspired and motivated by religion more than other things?

    • Ewent profile image
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      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 20 months ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      Spiritual consciousness doesn't transcend to help the emotionally disturbed. In most cases, the emotionally disturbed gravitate toward the spiritual in semi-conscious state of mind. Of course, this always depends on the degree of emotional disturbance. A balanced mind is balanced and capable of reason. An emotionally disturbed mind may not be capable of reason. The greater the degree of emotional disturbance, the less reason the individual can rely on.

      Recently, Pope Francis made a very avant garde statement that many individuals have always known: "Religion and spirituality are not the same."

      I believe His Holiness was pointing out that religion is an "establishment" and spirituality is not. Nothing is required to connect with the spiritual side of humans. It is not dictated by anyone or anything. It just exists in each human being. For some, spirituality is the simple admission that humanity is a mere cog in the wheel of the universe. For others, spirituality is a regimen by which reason concurs a sense of good or evil.

      The blessings of spirituality is that it has no dogma, rules or regulations. Religion, by contract seeks to modify behavior according to religious tenets of faith.

    • rodrigo sebidos profile image

      Rodrigo Sebidos 20 months ago from Zone2 Brgy.Guadalupe, Baybay City, Leyte, Philippines

      In this context, I feel that Spiritual consciousness is the highest among the 5 elements you mentioned, can it motivate to inspire beyond the normal consciousness as is observed in some sect to do unacceptable deeds to humanity in the guise of religion? For instance, the centuries-old conflict between Christians and Muslims based on the religious belief that "to kill an infidel is not a sin?" this issue was never resolved and presently its happening again.Though I agree with you that spirituality may influence reasons but if it lead to religious fanatism to inspire or motivate to do evil?Is there hope for this?

    • Ewent profile image
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      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 20 months ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      Spirituality, in and of itself, inspires which is followed by motivation. It's important to separate religious observance from spirituality. They are two very different human elements.

      Where religions are all concerned, they are and always have been established by humans. Therefore, they are unrelated to spirituality. For example, prior to his becoming the head of the Mormon church, Joseph Smith was a huckster who traveled from place to place selling an "elixir."

      The true prophets in Biblical history experienced inspiration through meditation, not through established religious dogma. And, it's important to note that religious dogma transcends from ancient traditions.

      Religious beliefs tend to have a core in the need for human survival. Which likely accounts for the Kill or Be Killed human instinct that can gloss over the act of murder as a violation of religious beliefs.

      Spirituality is only purest when the human is not part of it. When the human imprint is the major influence in spirituality, it isn't spiritual, it's mental or emotional.

      For example, Osama bin Laden inspired mostly the young and impressionable to jihad. Was that really inspiration or human will? What part of human will is spiritual? In essence? None.

      All humans are born with a free will to do good or evil. The choice always remains with the conscious mind of the human.

      When mental illness occurs, mental imbalance implies an inability to reason right from wrong, good from bad and balance from extremes.

      Religious fanaticism is borne of seriously unbalanced individuals who are incapable of recognizing that imbalance. They cannot be reasoned with in a sane rational communication between themselves and others.

      When they gravitate toward religion and become singularly fanatical about it, they reach a level of mental insanity that goes to extremes to prove they have control.

      The one issue humans still cannot accept is to admit when they are mentally ill. To the seriously mentally defective, living in another world is preferable to reality.

      Human will, not religion, inspiration or spirituality is the engine that drives some to do evil. As such, they are incapable of accountability for their actions. We can only hold responsible those who are mentally balanced. In society today, we find many examples of extremists who cannot be reasoned with and display fanatical tendencies they try to impose on others.

      Mental illness is a lonely, very isolated dimension to exist in. This is why religious fanatics feel the need to preach their willful gospels to amass like mentalities.

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