In his December edition of his vlog (video log) Learning at the Speed of Life Steve Moore of The Mission Exchange focuses on motivation, claiming that
“Life appears easier than it really is when you have it
and harder than it really is when you don’t.”
Nobody would controvert that, would they?
But I wonder why we don’t pay more attention to it, why we don’t capitalize on the opportunities to cultivate and protect motivation and quickly respond to low morale, internal and external obstacles, etc.
Steve also points out that
“Information by itself almost never translates into motivation. Knowledge by itself rarely provides the motivation required for lasting personal change.”
“Everyone prefers the results of positive change over the status quo, but we tend to prefer the status quo over the effort that will be required to produce the positive change.”
He quotes a 2005 article titled Change or Die which asks the question, “What if you were given that choice?”
“For real. We’re talking actual life or death now. Your own life or death. … What if a well-informed, trusted authority figure said you had to make difficult and enduring changes in the way you think and act? ... Could you change when change really mattered?“You wouldn't change.“Don't believe it? You want odds? Here are the odds, the scientifically studied odds: nine to one. That's nine to one against you.”
The article goes on to tell the story of a doctor who was able to overcome those odds, in working with coronary bypass survivors. Previous studies had consistently shown that the vast majority did not make the lasting life changes it would take to stay alive. But by adding to his treatment a commitment to helping his patients locate an internal source of motivation – not just information, and not just fear – he kept them alive.
The joy of living, as they discovered, is a more positive motivational force than the fear of dying.
Watch Steve's vlog here. The good stuff starts about five minutes in (after he's done talking about new books and resources on various topics).