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Motivation is the key to success in any given situation. Motivation is the fuel that makes an idea turn into an action. When breaking down the idea of motivation, it falls into two different categories. Internal and external motivation are both effective but influence individuals differently. Some find stronger motivation from internal motivation than external and vice versa. There are strong differences between the two motivators and it is important to find which one works best for you.


External Motivation

Extrinsic motivation is when an individual finds the motivation to act out a given behavior or engage in order to earn a reward or avoid punishment. This form of motivation is used rigorously throughout the education system. This can be seen when a student must study for a test to receive a good grade. When a child cleans their room to avoid being reprimanded by their parents, is another example of external motivation. External motivators are quite common throughout American culture. This form of motivation is found or forced upon an individual.

Even compliments can be seen as an external motivator. It is any form of motivation that comes from other people. These affect us in how we see ourselves and even how we push to work outside of our comfort zone.


Internal Motivation

This form of motivation is found from within. Intrinsic motivation is when you engage or act on a behavior because you find passion in it. The act is personally rewarding thus you do not need external motivators to act on it. For example, participating in a sport because you love playing it is an example of internal motivation.Playing a sport because your parents make you, is an example of an external motivator.


The Better Motivator

Research has shown that actually context plays a major factor for motivation. Externally motivating an already internal motivator can lead to a reduction of intrinsic motivation. It is called the overjustification effect. Certain situations work better with external motivation while others need a better internal motivation.

Many feel that intrinsic motivation is the most organic way to find motivation yet, extrinsic can be helpful for motivation as well. To find a motivation that works for you, in whatever situation you are in, find if it is something that you find passion in or need someone to help you find motivation. This awareness can truly help in the success of the situation.