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The Role and Power of Motivation

motivation man reaching his goals In the modern business environment, employers, team leaders, and managers are expected to understand and apply motivational techniques. Sales managers, in particular, must utilize powerful motivators to counteract the daily rejection experienced by members of the sales force.
Some organizations use motivational tools to help their members meet the challenges of serving the public and conducting fundraising activities. Fraternal organizations, Boy and Girl Scout troops and Church groups are examples of these.
People who provide counseling services—Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-Anon, family and school counselors, group therapists, weight loss counselors, and self-help groups—rely heavily on motivational tools, such as goal setting, to keep clients on track, particularly in day-to-day situations.
Athletic coaches use visualization and other techniques to help players improve and win.

Building A Repertoire

Although we know that different people respond to different motivators, a successful motivational speaker or seminar leader benefits most from having a broad repertoire of motivational tools and strategies.
He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance. One cannot fly into flying.

— Friedrich Nietzsche
(1844 - 1900)
German philosopher

Tools and Strategies

Some of the basic tools are listed here.

Goal Setting: People can be overwhelmed by goals that appear to be beyond their reach. Helping people set reasonable goals and break down long-term goals into shorter increments is helpful. The dieter who plans to lose 100 pounds may lack the motivation to diet for a year or more, but a loss of 2-3 pounds a week is an immediate goal that can be easily reached and reinforced with praise. Read more about Goal Setting on our helpful information site.

Focus: People who are successful in reaching goals are those who are able to maintain their focus, even when the objective is years away. Many of those successful people mention that they feel inspired to persist by focusing on a symbol of success. The symbol itself might be one that epitomizes success, uniqueness, or height (in our culture, reaching for success involves reaching up or skyward!).

Symbols of Success: The eagle is a great example of a lofty, free spirit that soars above the rest and symbolizes power and success. Other people look for symbols that help them focus their energy. Many people consider pyramids as powerful, stable structures that help them focus their energies. Still others select photographs and other art forms that depict athletes or powerful animals moving towards their goals.

Music: A substantial research base exists to validate the power of music to motivate people. Many describe a favorite piece of music as “moving” or “inspiring.” These descriptors indicate that music has great appeal to the emotional being, and that the effects of music penetrate beyond the conscious mind to the inner self where persistence and hope reside. Read more about the motivational power of music on this site.

Setting Goals

We’ve all been through it, time after time. We decide to make some changes in our lives: to lose weight, quit smoking, start exercising. We set our goals, and we work towards them. And, for a while, it works very well! We’re dedicated, motivated, and moving towards improving ourselves. And then, slowly, perhaps so slowly we don’t even notice it, we start to slip.

We skip a workout because we’ve booked an appointment for that time. We find excuses to light up just once, and that chocolate mountain fudge cheesecake just looks so good . . . and before we know it, our careful plans are all for nothing, and we have to start again from scratch. Trouble is, every time we try again, we fail, and eventually the gap between starting and failing to reach a goal narrows, until finally, we just stop trying. Sound familiar?

It happens to people all the time. It’s not that people lack the self motivation or willpower to set goals and attain them. It’s just that many of us have no idea how to set realistic goals, or how to maintain the motivation necessary to keep working towards them.
We don't plan to fail; we fail to plan.
— Author unknown

Reaching Goals

Fortunately, if you watch successful people, you start to see some patterns—patterns anyone can apply. Successful people are masters at setting goals. They don’t just announce, “I’m going to lose 20 lbs.” Instead, they break the process down into easy-to-attain goals. A twenty-pound loss may be their ultimate goal, but they start by determining to lose five. Losing five pounds sounds a lot easier than losing twenty! Once they’ve lost five, they set a new goal: to lose another five pounds, and so on until they meet their goal. There’s an old saying that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. It’s often the thousand miles we tend to see, and not the individual steps towards the goal. Enjoy the journey towards your goals even more than actually attaining them, because it’s the journey that ultimately makes setting goals worthwhile.
We all set goals, whether we're humming the tune to a favorite song, daydreaming of what could be, or making resolutions to create a significant change in our lives.

Good News About Goal Setting

The good news is that we often attain our goals! Striving for more—greater success, more money, recognition, personal security, a better job—sometimes keeps up from acknowledging those goals we have reached. We're just too busy planning for the next phase.

Take a few minutes, as you read this, to stop and think about what you've achieved in your life.

We're reminded, from time to time, of our greatest achievements simply because many of them are linked to concrete evidence: finishing a college degree, getting a large raise, giving birth to a child, visiting a foreign country. Perhaps at one time, these achievements were important goals, but they've gradually become a part of your life. Chances are, you've lost track of all the improvements you've made and aren't making a big deal of the goals you've reached.
Setting Goals: Looking Ahead
Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off the goal.
— Hannah More


  1. very insightful post you got friend :) keep it up!