OT Clinical Services

5 Common Sources of Motivation

The age-old question that actors have been asking Directors… This phrase directly applies to everyone as we take on a new year. Are you motivated this year to pursue new health goals, career objectives, or personal initiatives? Motivation is the beginning of all choices.

  1. Intrinsic Motivation – Behavior that is driven by internal rewards and wanting to do something for its own sake. The focus here is on the act of doing over the achievement of an ultimate goal. As people age, they pursue intrinsic goals and focus less on external-oriented goals. They are choosing goals that reflect deeper interests, rather than external pressures. (Ryan & Deci, 2017).
  2. Maintaining a positive self-image – People are motivated to be viewed in a positive way, think kindness. Our actions shed light on our personality and preferences, for example doing an act of kindness for someone in need or showing support for those who have experienced a difficult situation.
  3. Curiosity – The curious person finds motivation by obtaining the missing information to reduce the feeling of having a gap in their knowledge or understanding. Once we are told what we do not know, we want to seek out the information.
  4. Current Moods – This relates to there being a match between the guidance we are offering and the current mood of the person in front of us. Being in a negative mindset encourages one to have bad moods. In contrast, people are more motivated to engage in boring tasks when they are in a good mood. The focus here is to align what you have to say with the other person’s mood.
  5. Other People – People are a mixture of motivations. We’re all motivated by many different things whether internal or external.  The people that we surround ourselves with can help us determine and appreciate the complexity of motivation.