MANY initial attempts at motivation letters are poor because the letters do not convey a sense of the individual. Instead, they are often stories: "Once upon a time I was born and had a childhood; I plan to go to university, start a great career, marry a prince or princess, and then live happily ever after. The End." Unfortunately, that tells the reader very little about you.
Other initial attempts provide a laundry list of schools and activities. "I went to this prestigious school; I participated in that activity; I held this office in this club; I speak 10 different languages, sometimes simultaneously; this program in university is next on my checklist." Again, that tells very little about you, other than that you've been busy.
Before you even begin to write your letter, think of who you are. What motivates you? What do you like and dislike? What brings you pleasure? What annoys you? What are you naturally good at? What are your weaknesses? You might want to look at a job hunter's book called What Color Is My Parachute. In that book are a lot of exercises that will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses.
You should also take a personality test to learn more about yourself. One very popular test is called the Meyer Briggs test. You can complete an online test. If you search for books at Amazon.com using the search terms Meyers Briggs, you can purchase books related to the test as well. You will learn how to better interpret the results.
NOW you have a better understanding of yourself. You know what your strengths and weaknesses are, you know what you like and dislike, and you know how your personality fits in with your career aspirations. Next, decide what your selling points will be. If you wanted a friend to describe you in a positive light, what would you want him or her to say? If that friend said you were smart, what proof or evidence does your friend have? What you should do is make a list of your positive selling points with evidence or proof to support your assertion. These selling points should align with your career goals.
When you are writing your motivation letter, you need to do the following things:
Be very clear on what you want to achieve (get a nursing degree)
Be very clear on what you will do with this degree (how do you see yourself in 5 to 10 years)?
Why do you want to pursue your chosen career? You know the answer to this question from your strengths and weaknesses as well as from your personality profile.
What have you done to prepare yourself for your chosen career? Here you are selling yourself. Use your prior information and your supporting evidence to bolster your position.
Highlight anything that is extraordinary that needs to be taken into consideration.
Looking at these five items, you can see that you need not tell a story about your life. In fact, doing so probably doesn't really address the heart of the issue as outlined by points 3 and 4.
You might think that providing them a laundry list of schools and activities fills your objective. No, wrong-- again, it merely tells the reader that you were busy and it fails miserably to address point 3.
Let's take a closer look at writing your motivation letter:
Covering points 1 and 2 ought to be very straightforward. Next, think about why you want this career. What motivates you? What do you like about it? What passions does it stir in you? How do you see yourself performing in this role? Does it suit your personality?
Now begin to tell about things in your past that suggest you and your career goals are aligned. Tell about those activities that support your career aspirations or things needed for your career. Your activities need not be directly applicable.
For example, my first degree was a mechanical engineering degree. In point or short form (as a crude example)--
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