Self-motivation is defined by Webster’s Dictionary as the “initiative to undertake or continue a task or activity without another’s prodding or supervision.” This means that it is all about someone making the decision to help themselves, possessing a strong desire to change, allowing growth to occur and being determined. As a counsellor, teacher, coach or mentor it is so important for us to focus on this for ourselves, then be that support system for our clients or students. How is it possible to give or teach something that we do not have ourselves? We need to be selfish and take care of our motives first. Once this is established, we can effectively help motivate our clients and students at the early stages, as well as throughout their journey.
I often ask my clients questions such as “What is most important to you in life?” “How do you plan on making it happen?” and “Who is in control for it to come about?” Often these questions are presented in different ways, but the outcome that I always look for is for them to fully understand that they are in complete control of their own life. Self-motivation is important because it is the very first step toward any personal growth and life achievements. It all begins with an amazing discovery that you can actually make a difference in your life and the lives of those around you.
As professionals in the industry, we can only do so much to help guide our clients if they are not first committed to their own personal growth. We must always be self-motivated and encourage others to do the same. In my opinion, this is an essential topic to cover prior to any other.
Sink – float – soar
In one of my books, I classify three different types of people:
- Type 1: People who make bad decisions, cannot choose a path and waste their lives away are what I like to refer to as the sinkers. (not self-motivated)
- Type 2: People who wish and dream about a better life but would rather purchase lottery tickets than go after what they want are the floaters. (not self-motivated)
- Type 3: People who know what they want, plan for it and go out and make it happen are those who soar. (self-motivated!)
Do any of your clients or students fall into one of these categories? Instead of finding them the next available job, consider how you can guide them to develop a solid foundation of self-motivation, which will help them soar in all aspects of life
A step toward self-motivation
A simple way to help your clients or students take charge and become self-motivated is to advise them to write in a journal on a daily basis and take note of all that they want to accomplish. For instance, they could chart personal health goals, the type of lifestyle they want, the type of job they would like, and so on. By writing down all these goals, they can begin to move toward living the life that they want and that they choose.
Once the above has been completed, we can help guide our clients or students down a customized path, using their goals and incorporating our knowledge and expertise. Let’s be honest, no one likes to be told what to do. Also, passion and excitement for goals don’t last as long when they stem from another person. When we are able to make the decision to live life from the inside-out, versus the outside-in, every choice lasts longer and we have much better clarity in the path we choose.
Remember, there are no limits to self-motivation or a wrong way to go about it. We can decide to embrace life and go after our dreams, or not act at all and allow it to pass us by. The decision is ultimately ours to make. Self-motivation requires us to be decision-makers.
Self-motivation is one of the key elements in life that we have full control over. Oddly enough, people don’t seem to spend much time on it. Instead, individuals waste more time on things that they cannot control, such as the weather, traffic, time, other people and what they say. We can control our attitude, our thoughts, our conversations and our actions toward others – and help others do the same. Self-motivation strengthens awareness and removes negative thought. It promotes discipline, action and resolution, and is a steadfast road to contentment.
Self-motivation is key in all elements and stages of our life. Let ensure that we spend time to better understand it and continue to help those around us to truly live it.
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