Motivation is the most discussed and least understood phenomena. Right from Maslow’s theory till now, there has been an unending debate on how or what motivates an individual. But what has definitely emerged form this debate is that self motivation or intrinsic motivation is the one that stays a long time.
Extrinsic motivation is caused by external factors where someone else tries to get things done in a certain way and gives out rewards/punishments for adherence. Needless to say that intrinsic motivation comes from within where in the person really wants to do his/her work.
During the tough times such as the current economic recession, even keeping one’s job is getting difficult. Thus there is no question of high rewards or incentives for employees during these times. But it is still important to keep your motivational levels high because this can help you tide over difficult period.
So, what exactly is “motivation”? Motivation is a psychological process that gives behavior purpose and direction. Or it is an internal drive to satisfy an unsatisfied need.
Staying motivated is a constant struggle even in good times for most of us. We as humans are constantly exposed to negative thoughts from others as well as self induced doubts and depressions. And this is what separates the highly successful from the others. Although there is no simple solution for a lack of motivation, it is important to sustain it to stay afloat in the current job scenario. Keeping employees happy and motivated is one of the key challenges of Human resource people. Actually, sometimes it is more important for an employee to be recognized for his good work rather than be awarded. Little gestures of recognition and understanding can ago a long way in producing self motivated employees.
Let us look at some common tips to help one self motivate himself during slump times. But before that let us understand why we lose our motivation. It could be because of external factors such as bad vibes in the workplace or situation such as that of today of economic recession or they could be internal such as Lack of confidence, direction and focus. Out of these, there is not much we can do about external factors, but we can definitely control our internal motivational factors. And this is how we can do it --
1. Set Goals -- Short and long term goals - Use both short and long term goals to guide yourself to your ultimate aim in life. Keep reminding yourself of these goals as and when possible.
2. Make Work fun - Work is most enjoyable when it doesn’t feel like work at all. Add activities that you find most enjoyable and create positive environment to get better results.
3. Create challenges – you will be happy when you are progressing towards a goal which is not only attainable but requires you to be more creative. Winning small battles gives the motivation for tackling bigger issues.
4. Finish what you start. A half finished project is of no use to anyone. Quitting is a habit. Develop the habit of finishing projects.
5. Keep self learning or learning new things. First this will help to reduce dependency on others for knowledge and second it will open up new worlds of opportunities and most importantly, it will keep you interested in doing something new.
6. Align and Harmonize natural talent with interest that motivates. Natural talent creates motivation, motivation creates persistence and persistence gets the job done.
7. Learn to take risk. Failure and bouncing back are elements of motivation. Failure is a learning tool. No one has ever succeeded at anything worthwhile without a string of failures
Keeping track of your most important tasks will direct your energy towards success. So, keep yourself occupied with step by step goals and see how it takes you to the ultimate one.