Motivation is what leads us to behave in certain ways. A person is normally motivated
by the concept of 'reward' and this can be 'tangible' i.e. physical things such as
money, food, house or 'intangible' i.e. feelings such as pride, self-
There has been much psychological exploration and explanation of motivation and there are many theories on drive, needs and desires. Motivation can be described as 'intrinsic' and 'extrinsic'. Intrinsic motivation is where it comes from inside you and extrinsic is where it comes from other people.
Intrinsic motivation does not rely or depend on external factors.
With regard to students, research was carried out which established that 3 key elements need to be present in order for students to successfully complete their courses:
1. A genuine interest in and relationship with the subject of study, meaning that their aim is not solely to achieve high marks.
2. A belief that they are in control of reaching their own goals; their fate is not determined by luck.
3. An ability to attribute results to internal, not external factors ie. Their results depended on how much time, effort and work they put in and did not depend on external factors like the good mood of assessors or luck.
A true sports champion will compete for the love of the sport although trophies and accolades represent subsequent extrinsic incentives.
Money is the key extrinsic motivator. People will work unhappily in jobs in order
to receive money to enable them to do and have the things they want. Motivation in
There are times when a person's belief and behaviour are not in harmony and it can be difficult to establish motivation. A person may not even recognise their own motivation for continuing with a certain behaviour. A good example of such cognitive dissonance is a person who continues to smoke although they wish to be healthy and they also believe smoking damages health.
We all know that feeling motivated feels good. It can be a shock for a previously
motivated person to recognise that they have 'lost' their motivation and this can
lead to feelings of low self-
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