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What is motivation?

Motivation is the drive, energy, and impulse to act. When you say that you are motivated, it simply means that you are bubbling with the energy to do whatever it is that you want to do.

Motivation itself is not an emotion but it is the purpose of all emotions, meaning that all emotions serve to motivate us to perform some kind of action. All emotions give us energy so that we can act and the willingness to act is motivation.

Behind every action, there is a motive

And behind every motive is a need. Needs are the essential triggers of motivation. Whether it be a physiological need; like the need to have food (hunger) or a social need; like the need to be accepted, a need is what induces motivation in us and drives most of our behavior. You can’t have motivation without a need and you can’t have action without motivation.

Need > Motivation > Action

We all have needs, no doubt about that, but we all don’t have the same level of motivation to fulfill those needs. Those who do have some amount of motivation may not be motivated enough to take actions to fulfill their needs. These are types of people that usually seek motivation. They're trying to increase their motivation level so that it reaches a threshold where they're forced to act.

Unfortunately, many motivation-seekers keep looking for motivation forever without understanding that the sole purpose of motivation is action. Their efforts at increasing their motivation are nullified if they forget the most important part- action. (Self-help addiction)

Then there are others who are highly motivated but don’t just stay that way but rather utilize their motivational energy to take powerful actions. They are the ones who succeed in fulfilling their needs and desires. 

Want motivation? Trigger and intensify your emotions

Now, why is it that some people have tremendous motivation while others totally lack it? The reasons are numerous but they can all be boiled down to one thing- they aren't emotionally charged. In order to increase your motivation, you have to increase your emotion to such a point where the pressure of emotions becomes unbearable and you have no other option but to act so that you may release your emotions.

a man with motivation

The emotion that I'm talking about here is the painful emotion of realizing that you have not reached your goals yet. Constantly reminding yourself of what you lack so that you become motivated to pursue that thing is the most powerful way to motivate yourself. You will get super-charged with energy.

Many motivational speakers and websites will tell you goody-goody stuff to make you feel warm inside but this blog is all about focusing on stuff that works. If something doesn't work, you simply won't find it here, even if it's really cutesy stuff.

The point is, negative motivation is much more powerful than positive motivation. Imagining yourself having achieved all your goals is nice but it won't motivate you nearly as much as imagining yourself failing to get what you want.

When a wolf is chasing you, you don't imagine yourself sitting safely on a tall tree and you don't lie down in the grass, all grateful for such a lovely forest around you, with all the bees and the trees. You just freaking RUN! At that time, you're chasing the goal of survival with everything you've got. Your motivation level is through the roof.

When you develop that kind of attitude toward your other life goals and not just survival than nothing can stop you.

The most important thing is to have faith in your abilities. If you don’t, then reminding yourself of your needs can prove to be depressing. Another name for having faith in your abilities is self-confidence. This is precisely why self-confidence is important because the lack of it can force you to remain stuck forever without being able to unleash your full potential. ( How limiting beliefs limit our potential)


In order to take any action, you have to have enough motivation. To have motivation, you absolutely have to have a need, a desire. Make sure you don’t endlessly motivate yourself without taking action because the only purpose of motivation is to make you act. 

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