Motivation is the reason for acting, is a desire, a willingness to accomplish something.
As a young entrepreneur I used to work more than 16 hours a day. I was motivated to succeed and to earn money. At night I could not sleep because I was afraid that I would not be able to accomplish what I wanted.
Now as an old entrepreneur I am still motivated, but money is not anymore my motivation; yes, I want to succeed but my motivation is to make changes, to create ideas and projects that will improve peoples lives. Ideas that will last long after I am gone.
So how does motivation work?
There are two types of motivation, Intrinsic and Extrinsic motivation:
Intrinsic motivation means that the individual's motivational stimuli are coming from within. The individual has the desire to perform a specific task, because its results are in accordance with his belief system or fulfills a desire and therefore importance is attached to it.
Our deep-rooted desires have the highest motivational power. Some of them are:
- Acceptance: We all need to feel that are accepted
- Curiosity: We all have the desire to be in the know.
- Honor: We all need to respect the rules and to be ethical.
- Independence: We all need to feel we are unique.
- Order: We all need to be organized.
- Power: We all have the desire to be able to have influence.
- Social contact: We all need to have some social interactions.
- Social Status: We all have the desire to feel important.
Extrinsic motivation means that the individual's motivational stimuli are coming from outside. In other words, our desires to perform a task are controlled by an outside source. Note that even though the stimuli are coming from outside, the result of performing the task will still be rewarding for the individual performing the task.
Extrinsic motivation is external in nature. The most well-known and the most debated motivation is money.
Most of us believe that motivation is based on a reward or punishment system. Daniel H. Pink says other wise in his book "Drive." He believes that humans need to control their own lives, learn and create and therefore do better in their world. The reward and punishment system may have worked in the past but now times have changed.
Pink examines the three elements of motivation:
Autonomy: it means that we all want to be in control of our lives
Mastery: is the desire to get better in something that matters
Purpose: is when we work towards something larger than ourselves
_After learning about the different types of motivation I realized that as an old man that I have gone from extrinsic to intrinsic motivation, money is not the main reason I get involved in projects, my motivation is to create and teach people what I have learned through my successes and failures.
Hopefully I can help cultivate a new generation with principles, strength, that will become and promote a positive impact in this world.
To finish I am sharing a question that Daniel Pink asks himself every night before going to sleep…
Why am I better today than I was yesterday?