Types of motivation: the 8 motivational sources

Types of motivation- The motivation can be defined as the process that initiates, guides and maintains behavior aimed at achieving an objective or meet a need .  It is the force that makes us act and allows us to move forward even in difficult situations. Going for a glass of water when one is thirsty, studying all night to pass the driving test that is so desired or training hard to be the best of a championship, are possible thanks to it.

However, just as the challenges and projects we propose are very varied, the types of motivation from which our forces are born to achieve our objectives are also. Exactly of that I will speak in this article: of the types of motivation.

Definition of motivation

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The word motivation is the result of the combination of the Latin words motes and motion. Judging by the sense that is attributed to the concept from the field of psychology and philosophy , a motivation is based on those things that drive an individual to carry out certain actions and to maintain their behavior to achieve all the planted objectives. The notion, moreover, is associated with the will and interest. In other words, motivation can be defined as the will that stimulates an effort to achieve certain goals.

It should be noted that motivation implies the existence of some need , whether absolute, relative, pleasure or luxury. When someone is motivated, consider that what excites you is essential or convenient. Therefore, motivation is the bond that makes an action possible in order to satisfy a need.

In relation precisely to how necessity influences motivation, it is interesting to emphasize that there is a classic theory, that of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, which precisely shows how there is a pyramidal structure of those that contribute the best to motivate a person in question.

In this way, at the top of said pyramid would be the needs called self-realization, such as independence or competition. The second step would be covered by those of esteem such as prestige or recognition. In the middle of the structure there would be the social ones, among which are those of acceptance or belonging.

In the fourth position we find security needs that are security, such as stability or avoiding damages of some kind. And finally in the fifth and last section of the said pyramid would be the physiological ones such as food or clothing. All the aforementioned needs, established by Maslow, which determined that any of them requires that its lower step be covered in order to be activated.

This would mean that a person would only be motivated by social needs if the safety and physiological needs are already covered beforehand.

The interest of psychology for motivation

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Many psychologists have been interested in the study of motivation, because it is a basic principle in the behavior of human beings : no one moves without one without motivation, without a reason for it. Being motivated means carrying out daily tasks without putting a heavy burden on us and keeping us alive. But not only that, the motivation is related to other psychological variables, such as the level of stress,  self-esteem , concentration, etc., and, as many studies have indicated, it has an effect on the health and well-being of all of us.

Therefore, there are many theories that speak of human motivation, among them the aforementioned Pyramid of Maslow , the three factors of McClelland or the theory of the dual factor of Herzberg . When studying motivation, different approaches have been developed that are applicable to different areas:  work ,  sports ,  learning , etc. This has caused that several authors have classified the motivation with different names.

Types of motivation

The degree of motivation of each individual is not directly proportional to the value of what causes it, but it is the importance given by the person who receives it to determine the strength or level of motivation.

Next we will explain the different types of motivation, as well as the different sources of motivation that impel us to perform certain acts.

Extrinsic motivation vs. intrinsic motivation

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Extrinsic motivation

The extrinsic motivation refers to the motivational stimuli coming from outside the individual and the outside of the activity. Therefore, the motivating factors are external rewards such as money or recognition by others . Extrinsic motivation is not based on the satisfaction of carrying out the chain of actions that make up what we are doing, but on a reward that is only indirectly related to it, as if it were a by-product.

For example: an individual can work hard to earn more money or can study hard for the social recognition that gives him a good job once he has finished his studies. A person with extrinsic motivation for a task that must be delivered, work hard in it despite having little interest, because the anticipation of the external reinforcer will motivate you to finish it on time.

 Intrinsic motivation

The intrinsic motivation refers to motivation from the interior of the individual rather than any external reward. It is associated with the desire for self –  fulfillment and personal growth , and is related to the pleasure that the person feels when performing an activity, which allows a person to be in ” Flow State ” when performing it.

For example: an individual who attends the training of his football team simply for the pleasure of practicing his favorite sport.

The intrinsic motivation is the type of motivation most linked to a good productivity , since where the individual is given is not limited to meet the minimum necessary to obtain the reward, but is personally involved in what he does and decides to put in it much of his effort.

Positive motivation

The positive motivation refers to the process by which an individual initiates or maintains adhered behavior by obtaining a positive reward, whether external or internal (for the sake of activity).

Negative motivation

The negative motivation refers to the process by which a person starts or remains attached to a conduct to avoid an internal, both externally unpleasant consequence (punishment, humiliation, etc.) or (avoid the feeling of frustration or failure).

The literature specialized in sports psychology has also provided information on other types of motivation related to the world of physical activity and sport.

Basic motivation

The basic motivation refers to the stable base of the motivation that determines the level of commitment of an athlete with his activity. It refers to the interest of an athlete for sports results, their personal performance and / or the positive consequences of both.

Everyday motivation

The daily motivation refers to the interest of an athlete for daily activity and the immediate gratification that this produces.

 Motivational orientation focused on the ego

This type of motivation refers to the motivation of athletes depends on challenges and results compared to other athletes.

Motivational orientation focused on the task

Motivation depends on challenges and personal results, and subjective impressions of mastery and progress.

Both orientations are orthogonal and not opposed. Therefore, there may be athletes with both high orientations, both low orientations, with a focus on the ego high but low on the task and with a high task orientation but a low ego-centered orientation.

The main types of motivation according to the psychological and biological factor

Have you ever wondered why there are people who achieve everything they set out to do? What is it that pushes you to work for your goals?

The answer to these questions can be summed up in one word: motivation . But what is motivation and how does it originate? It can be understood by motivation to that force that leads a person to choose and perform an action among the various alternatives that can occur in a certain situation. In effect, the motivation is related to the impulse, because it provides efficacy to the effort aimed at achieving the objectives set, and pushes the person to the continuous search for better situations in order to perform professionally and personally.

This concept is closely linked to the behavior patterns of the human being, and there are many theories that try to define and explain the factors that affect and awaken motivation in the human being, and derived from these studies have determined the types of motivation that can be be present in the individual. Some people tend to support biological theories of behavior that consider the biochemical reactions that occur at the brain level that drive certain moods that encourage the execution of activities, however other currents support theories that consider emotional and social factors.

Types of Motivation according to Psychology

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The types of motivation are intrinsic, extrinsic, motivation, positive, negative, primary, social, basic and daily motivation. To achieve a goal, individuals must have that goal clearly defined, and possess the necessary skills, activation and energy. In addition, you must be aware to maintain that energy in the activity for extended periods of time (which can be very long) until you reach the established goal.

It is usually considered as a unitary phenomenon but it can be variable for each task we perform, ranging from a small motivation to reach the goal to a large amount of it.

But the motivation not only varies in the level in which it is presented, but also in the orientation, existing different types. The concept of orientation includes the underlying attitudes and the goals that produce the motivation, that is, the different phenomena that cause and maintain it Deci and Ryan (2000). These small variations associated with motivation would constitute the different types that the authors have tried to define over time.

This phenomenon implies a set of related perceptions, values, beliefs, interests and actions. The motivation is changing and increasing with age, in addition, its form of appearance in children, predicts its characteristics later in life.

Finally, we often hear how important it is to be motivated to achieve what you set out to do. More, in times of crisis, it seems that it takes double dose of motivation to reach such a precious place. Type of motivation is an internal state that activates, directs and maintains the person’s behavior towards certain goals or goals ; it is the impulse that moves the person to perform certain actions and persist in them for their completion. Motivation is what gives energy and direction to behavior, it is the cause of behavior. Motivation is a process that goes through several phases. Initially the person anticipates that they will feel good (or will stop feeling bad) if they achieve a goal. In a second time, he activates and starts doing things to achieve that goal. As you walk towards it, you will evaluate whether you are on the right track or not, that is, you will make a performance feedback. And finally, you will enjoy the result .

Roger Walker

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