It can feel meaningless and a bit of a cliche when we see companies advertising for ‘self-motivated’ employees. It’s very easy to make our response fit the requirement though isn’t it? We say: ‘Oh sure I’m self-motivated alright.’ But the reality can be far different. And what exactly is meant by the term?
The individual who’s able to take the initiative and drive themselves forward, without the crowd, is self-motivated
It’s also that individual who’s able to work well by themselves. It’s the upholsterer or carpenter working alone in their workshop creating beautiful things. It’s the person who can sit and meditate in solitude. It’s the nature photographer sitting in a hide silently waiting for that shot. So what’s the secret?
Part of what creates motivation is enthusiasm; an enthusiasm for life. The ability to set goals and visualise positive outcomes is beneficial. Seeking pleasure from success is important. In other words winning is the goal.
Everything is a game and when life is seen this way we can set out to win. The less motivated person might say: ‘I’m not into games, I never win, so what’s the point?’ And the solution to changing such an attitude is to find the point. Once we find something we love doing – because of the pleasure it brings us – we become motivated to repeat it. The rewards become the motivation.
We must be very selfish in our endeavours
In order to motivate ourselves we must seek rewards that are purely for ourselves. Self-motivated people are this way because they have a healthy regard for themselves. They understand the importance of them. They have a high opinion of themselves. They understand how important they are.
In contrast if you have a low opinion of yourself and poor self-worth then it follows that motivating you will be difficult. If you have little regard for your self why indeed would you want to play any game you believe you’re going to lose? There really would be little point. No one likes losing, especially, if this has become a theme.
As you can see, when dealing with the kind of issues highlighted here, there isn’t always one simple answer. For many of us, it can often be a situation where we need to bite the bullet, and just do it. As the expression goes – Do the thing and you will have the power.
We might not believe ourselves to be particularly self-motivated and yet jumping in at the deep end so to speak, without first thinking too much about it, does have it’s uses. Those with high self-worth tend to worry less about making mistakes. After all, there’s no such thing as a mistake, only feedback.
Potentially, and as strange as it might sound, we could make building self-worth our first goal. One way to achieve this is to master control over the mind. We can start with being mindful of our internal chatter: what we are thinking from moment to moment. The less motivated person, mentioned earlier, who asks: ‘What’s the point?’ needs to firstly cease this kind of negative dialog before they can find the initiative.
When we catch the mind talking itself down in this way we can countermand it with positive self talk, we say: ‘The point is the self-reward.’
Learn to meditate – The point is the self-reward!