Human Motivation

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Ever wondered what drives a person to complete a task in their lives? Why people choose to put forth more effort for a rewarding experience than one without a reward? An explanation could be the motivational drive or the lack of a motivational drive that a person has. By understanding where motivation comes from and how people use motivation, a person can better understand how and why people push forward to complete a task, and what people can do as ‘teachers’ to increase a persons motivation. People wake up every day of their lives and go about doing their daily routine. They see the same people time after time again but do not really think about why people act the way they do. People do not think about why people are doing what they are doing. They see people playing sports, going to work, or acting their part in society, but do not realize why these people are participating in such events. The factor behind why these people are doing what they need to do is a motivational drive that acts upon peoples decisions. Motivation is defined as the driving force which causes people to achieve goals (Maslow, 1994). The key words to take away from the meaning of motivation are the words ‘driving force’. Driving force is not an object that people can see, nor is it an emotion that people can see such as happiness or sadness. People often say “if you put your mind to it, you can do anything you want to.” When people say these words, they are speaking of driving force which is defined as a feeling or drive that comes from within a person and motivates them to complete a task or a goal. Motivation can be broken down into three types of motivation which are intrinsic motivation, extrinsic motivation, and self-motivation. Intrinsic motivation refers to motivation that is driven by an interest or enjoyment in the task itself. This type of motivation exists within the individual rather than relying on an external pressure. Intrinsic motivation is usually associated with motivation in academic studies and at times, athletic performances (Franken, 2007). Academically, students tend to be intrinsically motivated by thinking that their grades reflect the amount of effort they put into studying; thinking that they, as a person, can determine the grade they will receive and that it is not based on luck; they are interested in mastering a topic or study in order to learn the material instead of learning just enough to earn a good grade. Performance is closely related to academics when it comes to being intrinsically motivated. Athletes tend to be intrinsically motivated by thinking that their efforts put into practicing and preparing for the event will determine how good they will compete. Also, athletes show intrinsic emotion when they believe that the hard work and dedication put into the event will prevail over luck. Extrinsic motivation is different from intrinsic motivation because this type of motivation comes from outside the individual. Extrinsic motivation is a type of motivation that a person shows to receive an award such as money, grades, or trophies (Franken, 2007). Athletic competition or sporting events, although involved in intrinsic motivation, generally show extrinsic motivation. Individuals involved in athletic competitions tend to show extrinsic motivation because they are encouraged to win and beat others to receive an award for their efforts. These individuals have trained and worked hard to win the event rather than feel the intrinsic values of the sport. Self-control or self-motivation is another form of motivation that is often seen throughout people in society. Self-motivation describes a type of drive or desire that is deficient or needed with in an individual. When this need is desired, it will activate a behavior to obtain a goal or an incentive (Sanchez Jr., 2007). For example, a person who has not eaten all day will have a feeling of hunger and the goal is to find food. Self-control or self-motivation will cause...
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