Self-Motivation in Recovery

Most people tend to think of motivation as just one “thing.” Being, whatever it is that helps you keep going or conquer your goals. But, there are multiple kinds of motivation and they work in different ways.

Extrinsic Motivation

This kind of motivation comes from outside of you. Like rewards, money, good grades, winning a medal, being praised. Extrinsic motivation is helpful to many people because it’s the physical acknowledgement of their accomplishments.

Intrinsic Motivation

This is the kind of motivation that comes from within yourself and drives the behaviors that will help you accomplish whatever it is that you set out to do. For you, it means that what you’re doing is personally rewarding, you’re not being compensated physically.

The natural satisfaction that you get helps propel you forward. Sometimes, we don’t even know that we’re engaging in or being motivated intrinsically.

You can tell over time that you’ve been intrinsically motivated if you’ve gained great satisfaction from doing something. If you begin to eat right and exercise regularly, you might notice that your mood is lifted, your sleep is better, your energy levels are up. You just feel good about your accomplishment of consistent work outs and healthy meals.

That’s your self-motivation. If you’re looking for ways to get motivated, just turn your focus inward. What’s something that makes you feel good? Can you go for a long walk with your headphones in? Ride your bike along the beach? Read a couple of books from the stack that’s been piling up?

These are all intrinsic motivators, things you do just for the simple enjoyment of doing them. When you start to jump on the bandwagon, you’ll notice that engaging in these behaviors has huge benefits. You’ll feel refreshed, relaxed, happier, and ready to tackle anything life throws at you.

How do you get yourself motivated? Feel free to share below and give other community members a peek into what motivates you!

Cherry, K. “Intrinsic Motivation”. Very Well Mind. (website). 2018
  • 1 Commentby Likes|Date
  • When feeling legitimately unmotivated, sometimes I do something that forces me to follow through and it quickly turns into the feel good motives.
    As an example, I’ve wanted to exercise more yet I’m really good at avoidance and excuses... well I sign up for the Run for the Cure every year and if I don’t prepare then my 5km run is uncomfortably painful.
    Well I hadn’t realized that the first Sunday of October is our thanksgiving & therefore I am only 1.5 weeks from the run and I cannot allow myself to avoid it anymore.
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