If you’ve struggled to keep your New Year’s resolutions, it might be time to review and reboot them. The key to this is to align them with what really motivates you.

By Sarah Stones

Let me explain… We all have nine intrinsic motivators that vary in strength and importance as we go through life. As our likelihood of achieving anything in life, is related to how motivated we are, we need to pay more attention to what truly motivates us. For example, you will know from experience how much easier it is to wake up in the morning if you are motivated.

Our nine motivators affect our speed of decision making, our attitude to risk and change and the language we use. When we know what motivates us, setting and achieving goals, finding jobs and choosing careers we’ll enjoy becomes so much easier.

The nine different drivers of our intrinsic motivation (or in other words, our needs) are:

  • Security and stability
  • Recognition
  • Meaningful relationships
  • Being in control
  • Earning and competition
  • Learning
  • Creativity and problem solving
  • Freedom and independence
  • Making a difference

Think about a situation in your life when you have been fully motivated. Did it involve being with other people, competing, working on your own, learning new skills, etc? It is likely it involved two or three different motivators. (You may find it useful to write these down as a reminder.)

If you are looking to make changes in your life, considering what motivates or drives you is essential. When we are motivated we are happier, we achieve more and we perform better.

If your goal is to improve your fitness or lose weight, think about what motivates you. If you enjoy being with other people for example, going to an exercise class, joining a walking group or going to a gym will motivate you far more than trying to do things on your own. Conversely, if you don’t like doing things at a set time or doing the same thing all the time, going out for a walk or a bike ride on your own will suit you better than joining a group. If you are competitive, set yourself goals and targets and reward yourself when you achieve them (remember to break down your goals or targets into small milestones or they could become overwhelming).

If you like to make a difference, consider raising money for a cause close to your heart to help you achieve your goals.

Think about the type of organisation and the environment you want to work in as well as looking for jobs that utilise your skills. If you love creativity and change, take note of the environment when you go for the interview. Is it fun, does it have lots of light and colour?

Would you be able to work flexibly or work from home? If you enjoy working to procedures and processes and knowing what you are doing each day you may prefer a more predictable working environment.

About Sarah Stones

Sarah Stones is a motivation specialist and coach who works with individuals, young people, schools and businesses.


www.plainsailingmotivation.co.uk or follow her on Twitter: @motivate2engage or Facebook: Plain Sailing Motivation

Sarah Stones will present her ‘Finding your Bounce’ (Understanding what
motivates you) seminar at Naidex, Birmingham NEC, 26-27 March 2019