Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Thoughts on Long Term Motivation

Long term motivation has been on my mind lately. Why is it that I still run day in and day out close to four years after my last race on a college team? How is it that I sit at a desk eight or nine hours a day looking at models and have been nearly every week for the last two years? How is it I have thought about Mt. Everest most days for eight and a half years patiently waiting? Time and again I run into people that are amazed that I do these things. To me however they seem average. I feel that a lot of it comes down to motivation. I have a lot of it. How did I get it and where does it comes from? I am not sure.

I am working on a graph to describe just my running motivation. I came up with seven categories that motivate me to run. Then I am going through by year and estimating with a number how much each one mattered at that point. It is not finished. This graph is a starting point to articulating and describing my motivations for all aspects of my life I recognize. The second step is to generalize motivations first by applying to other aspects of my life and second by studying the motivations of others. The third step is to understand motivations, at least somewhat. Difficult I know, and I will probably be wrong many times, but worth doing. Some answers may be simple, like looking good improves dating prospects, but others may be complex, like a difficult childhood that causes a person to work hard to suffer more than anyone else. I don't have the answers, that is why I am looking for them. Fourth, and ultimate goal of this personal project is to teach or give or develop motivations.

Motivations get things done. If it is possible to spread motivations more things will get done. If more people commit to long term projects more difficult, and more rewarding, results will be achieved.

I am asking you my readers, comment below, email me, talk to me, Facebook me, or send a text message, what motivates you? Starting in the coming weeks and months I will be looking for case studies, people who are willing to open up about their motivations.

Long term I hope to produce some document, ebook, infographic or something from this.

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