Motivation is the dirty word of the moment. Your best friend doesn’t want to use it in case they offend you. Social psychologists avoid it. The socially aware skirt around it. HR managers pretend it doesn’t exist and anyone who has reached the peak of their career talks its importance down. In the meantime school teachers, sports coaches, life coaches and anyone in authority bandy it around like it is the one defining thing between those who make something of themselves and those who don’t.
Everyone, in short, gets it wrong. If you’re reading this piece right now you are motivated. A calculus deep inside your head has identified a state of dissatisfaction with your current state of being and you are working to find a pathway to a better place. That is the fundamental basis of motivation and it is the reason any of us do anything.
Simple as it may sound, however, it is far from it. Identifying that exact state of dissatisfaction takes introspection and self-awareness. Doing something about it requires goal-setting and planning skills. Sticking with it demands a sustained and sustainable approach to action. The four pillars of motivation are made up of those things, but motivation, long-term requires even more.
It needs us to understand who we are, which makes our sense of identity a key ingredient. It requires that possess grit so we can keep on going when the going gets tough. It requires resilience that is necessary for us to get up and move forward after each setback we experience. Above all it needs us to think like true champions who understand that what we seek to attain is worth the pain involved to get there.
These are skillsets that I explored in The Sniper Mind but they really come into their own in Intentional. Whereas the first book revealed the tip of the iceberg, so to speak, of each one as I used sniper stories and interviews to synthesize the skillset a person needs to succeed in business, Intentional makes it deeply personal.
If you want to know what it is that motivates you and how to stay in that mental frame then this is the book for you. Intentional is a little like a scalpel. It takes you deep into the things that make you be who you are. When you are aware of your personal formula you can then tweak it to improve it. And you need to remember that because each one's personal formula is unique, so really is their motivation.
This is the countdown to the release of Intentional: How to Live, Love, Work and Play Meaningfully. You can find a few more details about it here.
Each day of the countdown I will release one truth. So here’s the fourth one:
"Everyone's motivated in a different way."