Do you often look at the lives of some of the most successful people in the world and wonder how they got there? What made the difference in their success?
I believe my niece Ashley nailed it in her Facebook post: “People see the testimony, but rarely do they realize the tests that had to be passed to get to that point.” The same holds true with the people who we would say ‘have really made it.’ You see their success, but rarely do you see what they had to go through to get to that point. To get through the hard times, it takes faith, perseverance, and a strong motivation to get back up and keep trying. Where does their motivation come from?
Have you ever tried to lose weight? To successfully lose weight and keep it off, you have to change your eating habits or increase your exercise—or ideally, both. Long-term success means changing your lifestyle, which can be significant. You have to be highly motivated by a combination of intrinsic or extrinsic factors to stick it out and make lifelong adjustments. It’s got to be compelling enough so you stick with it.
What are the motivators that push successful people toward their goals? Motivators are driven by both intrinsic and extrinsic factors, and can be categorized into five important areas:
- Values: What are my values, the character traits that steer my moral compass? How do they show up in my life? How do they align with my workplace and the people around me?
- Vision/Personal Goals and Aspirations: What things are most important in my life? What are my priorities? How do I define success, both personally and professionally?
- Having Purpose: What’s my life’s work? Does my work make a difference in the lives of others? What purpose do my professional contributions serve? How do I fulfill my purpose both personally and professionally?
- Feeling Valued and Appreciated: Am I contributing to something meaningful? Are my contributions recognized and appreciated? Am I compensated fairly in my profession?
- Hope for Future Fulfillment: As I look ahead two years, five years, or even 10 years, what will I have accomplished in my personal and professional lives? Can I achieve these on my current or desired path?
Spend time reflecting on these questions, as your motivations significantly influence your will to succeed and your sense of accomplishment. Be aware that, as your life changes, your motivations and the answers to these questions will evolve over time. Pinpoint what motivates you and revisit these questions periodically. You may need to call on them to help keep you moving forward.
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