We have two motivators which are ‘away from’ known as fear motivation or ‘towards’ which is desire motivation and these motivators may be different for various stages in your life. Understanding what is driving your focus will help you to understand your thoughts and how you can harness them to be the best you can be.
Take the sales cycle for example; typically for the average lacklustre sales person it goes something like this… Sales targets are issued and everyone considers what they need to do to achieve the magic figure but more importantly, their focus is worry and anxiety and trying to avoid failure. So at first, they’re fired up, contact prospects and begin doing what they need to do to reach those targets. Then there’s a bit of lull. Salespeople typically take their foot off the gas around the middle of the month confident they’ve done a bit to make headway and thinking there’s still plenty of time to do more work on it, besides, they’re probably thinking, the adrenalin of a looming deadline will be the impetus they need. Then as the latter part of the month approaches, it’s like someone has lit a fire under the proverbial pot. They leap up and this is the point where they are motivated by fear – fear they’re not going to reach said target. There’s a lot of panic with hurrying and scurrying as they try to muster up as many prospects to contact as they can, sounding a bit desperate in the negotiations, probably resulting in deals that could have been better earlier in the month… The magic figure might just be met but what a stress that last week in the month is, when it really needn’t be…
On the other hand, the high achievers have a whole different approach. Upon being issued their sales targets, it’s a given in their mindset that they’re going to smash through them yet again, they just need to work on the strategy to figure out how.
With goals comes determination and persistence, top salespeople are driven to succeed and are motivated by desire. They have an expect success mindset resulting in their dominant thought – of achieving, nay smashing the targets.
I shared a house with a guy at University who was very bright. John was studying for an English degree but he seemed to have a self-destruct button. It was as if he was afraid of his own genius and feared not achieving what he knew he could achieve. So, he concentrated all his efforts in enjoying the social aspect of student life. The rest of us in the house knew he could do so well if only he would ‘get over himself’ but he wouldn’t listen. Regularly, he would pull an all-nighter, handing in essays by the skin of his teeth at deadline dates. Then came his dissertation in the third year… John realised one all night session to write 12,000 words wouldn’t work and panicked. He had three days. He worked literally day and night whilst the rest of us were making final edits to our dissertation and getting the document bound, handed in before seriously celebrating their completion.
John was a wreck by the time he handed in his dissertation and although he wouldn’t admit it, I think he’d learned a bit of a lesson. He achieved a 2:1 degree which is a great grade but we all knew he was destined for a 1st – if only he’d realised by thinking about what he desired rather than running from what he feared, his thoughts would have created a different set of experiences.
There is a significant difference between being motivated by desire as opposed to fear and it all starts with our thinking. I know which emotion I’d rather be creating with my thoughts…
“For some people, their fear to lose is greater than their desire to succeed, so they end up doing nothing and their dreams become impossible.” Rodolfo Costa
By Kirsty Perrin
About the Author: Having been immersed in the Winning Edge principles from an early age, Kirsty’s philosophy is to be the best you can be and to enjoy what you do in life.
Kirsty knows that personal development is a continuous journey and therefore has a genuine desire and enthusiasm to help people realise their full potential, to be a success in their life-whatever that may mean to them.
Kirsty’s thought-provoking blogs, prompt readers to think consciously about how their thinking has a huge impact on their life, it informs their emotions and therefore their behaviour. Living life consciously is the cornerstone to the themes of Kirsty’s blogs. You can contact Kirsty directly here