10 Sources of Motivation or Not

Rocky in Philly photo by FNM (luna12780)
Rocky in Philly inspiring as always - photo by FNM (luna12780)

Have you ever wondered what motivates you?  What motivates humanity?  How is it that some people are so energetic, full of life, excitement, and successful at what they do?  It’s quite complex, yet simple: love of life, hope when hardships are faced, faith in themselves and their purpose for existing.

The above 3 sources of motivation are, in my opinion, the most positive motivators any one being can have in this unknown existence.  The reason for their complexity is that although they are 3 separate motivators, they make up one bigger motivator, which I define as self-completion (in the sense of individual self-fulfillment, self-realization, self-actualization; not in any way related to the symbolic self-completion theory)  A person who is complete will most likely be motivated by the above with passion, energy and strong spirit; in favor of life, humanity and the world. 

On the other hand, if you want a list of 10 more typical motivators, orientated around the six different types of worldviews or attitudes, but not necessarily including a growth oriented individual, they are as follows:

  1. Success
  2. Money
  3. Personal Satisfaction
  4. Love
  5. Fame
  6. Power
  7. Possessions
  8. Purpose
  9. Responsibility
  10. Survival

 The order of the above is not hierarchical in any way nor does it imply anything; they are only a list of what pushes individuals to do what they do.  Some do it with joy, others with fatigue; but all have something that pushes them to get up in the morning, go to work, live life and continue to function in today’s society. 

When we study humanity we find there are various factors that can motivate them.  Usually we begin this analysis on our own and through our own experiences.  We see people and how they act, make our own assumptions and come to some conclusions of what seem to us ideal reasons and forces behind what motivates us.  Other times the question arises for personal reasons; for example feeling like nothing motivates us.  When we look into this particular reason we find there have been some, such as Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann in their “The Social Construction of Reality: A Treatise in the Sociology of Knowledge”, who claim that we humans hold a high spot for practical motives.  Humans become accustomed to what their role is in society, in their life, to what they do, and are only challenged when their “routine” is broken by something.  In our case the source of rupture would be feeling that nothing motivates us, followed by the question of why that is, if there is something wrong with us or with something around us.  Usually the answer behind our question lies within our dissatisfaction.  A satisfied person would be aware of themselves, of what they enjoy, why they make their decisions and would face a dilemma constructively.   

Another perspective, one of the most comprehensive and popular ones, is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory. This theory was first mentioned in his “A Theory of Human Motivation” paper.  It was fully expanded on in his “Motivation and Personality” book.  Although some have criticized or mentioned short comings of Maslow’s theory it is quite complete due to it entailing all the needs humans usually face.  The needs include survival, as well as self-actualization.

If we decide to look thoroughly at what motivates humans, we will succeed in finding many reasons, many theories.  Some will say that what motivates us is good, others evil, still others selfishness, and some would also say selflessness.  The one thing I notice mostly, is that as long as the individual is motivated by self-growth and completion, his/her motives will be to assist joy of life and humanity; consequently, improvement and growth in the world, human and country relations, as well as internal happiness and completion of others.  To reach a level of completeness that motivates you and allows you to smile even in the face of adversity; that allows you to push for unity, so that one day humanity may stand as one; and spread the ideal worldwide; is one of the most complete forms of motivation and human potential (even evolution) I envision exists.



2 comments on “10 Sources of Motivation or Not”

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