Career and Enterprising

How To Increase Motivation At Work

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With the multitude of global issues that we are facing right now, it is normal to experience burnout. Motivation is the drive that conquers burnout. Self-motivation is having the initiative to do a task without being supervised or being told to do it.

Think of two things you like doing and two things you do not like doing. From this simple exercise, you will realize which activities motivate you. Motivation drives our behaviors and there are two primary types of it. These are external and internal motivation.

With external motivation, you are doing something because the activity will bring some reward or benefit at the end of it.

For instance, you may visualize the act of job hunting. It is not something you do to pastime. People job hunt because they want an outcome – a job. The motivation for actually working is also usually external. We are motivated to go to work because we are paid to do so.

In contrast, internal motivation entails doing something purely because you love doing it. The more internally motivated an action is, the more enjoyable it usually is. So from the point of view of happiness, it makes sense to have more internally motivated activities in your life. People who are internally motivated show more interest and excitement over what they do. You are usually better at internally motivated actions too. You show more persistence and creativity. You are likely to have increased happiness and self-esteem by pursuing what internally motivates you.

Think about some of the things you do on a regular basis. Are you mostly externally motivated, acting in for the rewards? Or are you mostly internally motivated? It is important to know which type of motivation is strongest for you. If you follow this, your performance will likely improve and you will generally be happier.


With the bulk of tasks we have to finish in a day, do not expect everything to be internally motivated. Internal motivation is developed and maintained when we are autonomous, competent, and supported.

We feel autonomous when we can make our own choices and decisions.
We feel competent when we know that we can do things.
We feel supported when we are connected to others.


1. Practice what you need to do or perform beforehand.

2. Look for positive feedback, but value constructive criticisms. Your motivation will become stronger if you can find some way of getting positive feedback on your progress.

3. Break down your tasks and goals. If a task is very complex and challenging, breaking it down can help you stay motivated. It makes things more sustainable and attainable.

4. Make sure the difficulty level matches your ability. You want your goals and activities to be reasonable. It should not be too easy, because you will get bored. It should not be too difficult, because you will get frustrated.


Unsuccessful people often have good reasons for not hitting their goals. Successful people use those same reasons as their motivation. Practice transforming your excuses into motivations. Here are some examples:

1. I can not give up. I have to do this for my children.

2. I have to study harder, so that I can properly teach my students.

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What are you hustling for? Motivation is strongest when it comes from within. Let me close by highlighting what Don Wilder once said: “Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure.” Build a house that you deserve.

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