Motivation is everything to a great persuader. If you want to be more persuasive, you must start by learning how to motivate yourself and others.
Motivation is critical not only for achieving the big, milestone steps toward your objectives, but also for making all the little steps in between.
If you’re not driven or motivated, then not only will nothing be accomplished, but you probably won’t even get started.
Motivation takes on a dual role in the world of persuasion mastery. Motivation is first and foremost about keeping yourself motivated. Then, once you are a consistently self-motivated person, your focus turns to inspiring and motivating others to take action.
How to motivate yourself
You have probably heard the example of keeping a baby elephant chained up to a stake.
The baby elephant tries to get away, but the stake is too deep. When the elephant reaches adulthood, it could easily pull out the stake, but it has long since given up. It no longer even tries.
Dr. Martin Seligman, founder of Positive Psychology, calls this concept “learned helplessness.”
When we don’t take accountability for our learned helplessness, Dr Seligman says it could trigger the following negative results:
- Disrupts the ability to learn from the situation.
- Inhibits the ability to be creative.
- Lowers the expectation for future successes.
- Produces emotional disturbances, i.e anxiety, hostility, fear, and depression.
- Reduces the body’s immune system.
- Limits earning capacity and decreases job security.
When we are honest with ourselves, we may find that there are areas where learned helplessness prevails.
To overcome this tendency, you need to dream, and dream big. You’ve got to feel inspired to break those shackles.
Remember, your inhibitions have only as much power as you give them.
Like the baby elephant that has grown to maturity, the chain and stake are not a real obstacle.
What’s holding you back? What are the chains and stakes in your life? What would it take to make you want to leap out of bed each morning? If you have dull dreams, it is difficult to stay motivated.
How to motivate others
There are only two things that motivate us in life: inspiration and desperation. We either move toward that which inspires us, or we move away from that which fills us with despair or discomfort.
Most people only use desperation’s motivational energy.
Any persuader can motivate an audience with desperation, fear, and worry. The problem is that motivation spurred by desperation does not last.
People who are moved by desperation or fear are typically so preoccupied with what they’re trying to get away from that they can’t think of anything else.
If you want personal motivation to last, you need to rely on inspiration, which is rooted in our emotions and vision.
The positive results that come from using inspiration as a motivator are obvious. And, inspired people don’t need a carrot dangling in front of them to get something accomplished. They are self-motivated and don’t wait for external factors to drive them one way or the other.
Find the Switch, and Turn Motivation On
Motivation is not stagnant; we all will require different types of motivation. Every day, every hour we will require a different form of motivation. Great persuaders know when, how, and what type of motivation to use not only as a persuader but also in their personal lives. It is also critical to know which combination of motivation to use in each persuasive situation.