Why you need a 'why' for motivation

fulfilment helping people motivation why Jan 21, 2023

A couple of years ago, I went on a course  and they kept on about my ‘Why’ and I’m like – what do you mean by my Why? – but it was really quite simple - it’s why are you going to do what you are planning to do? Why are you going to follow your dream? Why is that dream your dream?

Another way of putting it would be to ask yourself ‘What is my motivation?’

Because if you ‘Why’ isn’t big enough, as soon as going for your goal gets tough, you will give up.

 It’s important to know what you want to get out of your dream/goal, because to get there it may mean changing the way you do things, it may mean some hard work, learning new skills and it may mean going through times of discouragement, but if you know your ‘why’ then this can keep you going when things get tough. For example. Money in itself is not a good motivator, they say that , if there are other factors that you are not happy about, the motivation/enthusiasm of receiving a pay rise lasts for only 2 weeks. If you are in a job/career just to earn money then it can feel like a drudge, but on the other hand, if your work is also your passion, then you get up wanting to go to work every day.

Knowing your 'Why' can determine your 'What'!

Let me explain. You may be in a job where you like some bits but not others. If you know why you like certain parts, ( and also why you don't like the others), then it could be possible to look around at other jobs and find one that has more of the parts you like. Eg you could be a nurse in a big hospital - your 'Why' is that you like caring for people, but you don't like bureaucracy/administration etc. Knowing that you could join an agency where you look after people in their own homes.

 Whilst just doing something for the money isn’t a good motivator, helping people is. The way that human beings are wired is to be in a community. We are social beings who want and need to interact with others. So when we know that what we are doing is helping others then it can help us through the tough times when we are tired and discouraged.

 When we lived in Thailand, we set up a small company that in conjunction with a local charity ‘The Tamar Centre’ helped women in the sex trade get out of it by being taught new skills where they could earn a decent living. We trained the girls to sew and then we employed them (paying double the minimum wage) to sew beautiful goods out of Thai silk, such as bedcover, robes, handbags and slippers. At the time I was also working full time as an engineering manager – which was the reason I was in Thailand. So I would be working 50 hours a week for my engineering employer and then working all the rest of my time, trying to get the company working, creating designs, sourcing the materials liaising with my seamstress who was teaching & supervising the girls, doing all the quality control on the goods, and also dealing with the marketing and sales. I was absolutely shattered, but it was also invigorating and I knew that I was helping these girls to start their lives over again, so they could go back to their villages with their heads held high, and that is what kept me going.

 A couple of years ago, I left a really good job as Project Director on a multi-billion dollar project in Kuwait, where I was earning very good money and was well liked by my client, to become a coach. Why? My motivation was twofold. 1) I wanted to do something that brought me closer to home, so I could spend more time with my husband, and 2) I wanted to help women develop their potential so they could achieve their dreams & destiny. A friend had told me that my destiny was to help pull others into theirs.

 I also recently trained to be a celebrant for weddings and funerals. I thought I would be concentrating on weddings – making the special day for the couple even more personal and magical. But I’m currently working on 2 funerals, and finding it really satisfying writing a personal ceremony so the families can say good-bye and send their loved ones off well.

 As I mentioned, money isn’t the best motivator, sure it’s nice to have it, but if you have the money and no fulfilment, then it can seem disappointing, and can leave you feeling empty. Do you agree?