How Do We Maintain Our Motivation?
by Jean-Paul Richard, with testimonials from Andy Buchanan and Laura-Ann Chong – Cirque du Soleil artists.
Motivation is what helps people think, move and develop. Everyone experiences motivation every day; it is an integral part of who we are as human beings. Over the last few months, in the face of the current global situation, you may have found it challenging to have the same energy level or functional behaviours. We and our loved ones may be responding differently, uniquely, and this can create a lot of emotions. The situation is unclear, and it changes every week, influencing the way we think, move and develop. This uncertainty impacts our energy and our motivation. So the question is, how do we maintain our motivation?
To answer this question, we are launching a project to explore the subject of motivation. Over the next few weeks we’ll share different initiatives designed to better understand and increase motivation, to better adapt, navigate and guide ourselves, and most importantly, to help us adopt behaviours that will be meaningful for our well-being and the well-being of those close to us.
We’re going to take a look at what science tells us about motivation and how to sustain it.
Specifically, we’ll explore the research and literature on the self-determination theory (SDT). As one of the most influential models in contemporary behavioral science, self-determination theory provides a framework for understanding the factors that promote human motivation and fulfillment, irrespective of context. It is studied by many researchers around the world and in different cultures.
The theory is explained in this way: by satisfying three basic and universal psychological needs, an individual increases his degree of self-determination and moves toward motivations that promote useful and meaningful actions. This includes motivations of fun and pleasure. This self-determined state results in a feeling of well-being and optimal functionality.
Neglecting one or more of the three psychological needs has the opposite effect on the individual, namely by diminishing the quality of energy and by provoking motivations driven by ego, guilt and an attraction to external rewards. In the end, the individual will have sub-optimal behaviours and a loss of well-being and performance.
We can attribute the following four characteristics to our psychological needs, underscoring their significance: they are universal, they are innate, they diminish our well-being if they are not satisfied, and they promote our well-being if they are satisfied, thus offering a positive outcome on our development and optimal functioning.
Here is a description of each of our three psychological needs.
- Autonomy: the need to feel at the origin or source of one’s actions.
- Competence: the need to feel efficient and capable of performing tasks with different levels of difficulty.
- Social affiliation: the need to feel connected and supported, and to have a sense of belonging to a group or person.
The three psychological needs are, in a way, the indicators of the level of well-being of a human being in his environment. If frustrated, one of these needs might be described as a red light, a warning sign. Our goal is to have green lights on all three needs.
To better understand this frame of reference and to grasp the theory and the impact on our well-being and motivation, we’re going to hear from two Cirque du Soleil artists. They will share their perspectives and detail how they use theory to take action to meet their psychological needs.
Stay tuned for more publication :)
See you soon.
Founder TANGIBLE performance
Reference: Self Determination Theory
Thanks to :
– Andy Buchanan, Laura-Ann Chong and Stacy Clark