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Reflection of Motivation

By Nikki Stone
Sports Motivation
Updated: October 07, 2008
Motivation is what inspires you or catalyzes you. It is your aspiration, your hopes, your passion, your desire, your incentive and your dream. Motivation is what gets you out of bed in the morning and gets you through each day. Motivation is a very personal thing and changes developmentally and situationally from year to year or moment to moment.

It expresses itself in different ways depending on your moods, past successes or failures, level of maturity, outside influential people, your attitudes, and your knowledge. It can be expressed positively and negatively, intrinsically or extrinsically. A positive motivation for me would be the effort put into an aerial jump to win an Olympic medal. A negative motivation for me would be the effort put into an aerial jump because of the fear of crashing. An intrinsic motivation would be helping a charity for the personal self-satisfaction of helping others. An extrinsic motivation would be helping a charity for the praise you would receive from others. What are you motivated by? We don't often take the time to recognize what motivates us. If we knew the source behind our motivation, it would help us keep the fire alive and keep us pushing through the obstacles to reach our goals.
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I believe that people are driven by what matters most to them at that particular time in their life. Motivation can be inhibited if there is a feeling that you may not be able to reach these goals and/or desires. For example, if someone becomes injured, their motivation to win a contest at the end of the season may go down because they feel they may not be able to obtain their goals. Just as a businessman's or woman's motivation can be hampered by a boss's negative comments. The less self-confident a person is in their own abilities, the more likely they will be influenced by others to gain or lose their motivation. I was always amazed at teammates who said that a certain coach didn't motivate them. I always felt that if they were solely looking to this coach to motivate them, then maybe they aren't out there competing for the right reason in the first place. You need to ask yourself if you are creating your motivation or if someone else is creating it for you.

Culture and rearing has a huge impact on both ethnic and gender differences in motivation. I believe that motivation has big ties to your upbringing. One generation teaches another motivation. Parents model behavior that is picked up by their children. Are you modeling the motivation you want your children, significant other, or friends to develop? As far as motivation in genders, society teaches males that they are expected to be more motivated if they are to succeed in the business world. Females aren't pushed by society to become as successful, and therefore they aren't expected to be as motivated. As these societal gender roles change, their motivation will likely change as well. Don't fall prey to societal stereotypes. We can all be whatever we want to be!

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