The Type of Motivation You Feel Can Increase or Decrease Your
Many studies have been done to research the effects of
motivation and mental health. As the implications of helping
those with negative self-esteem, depression and anxiety are
immense this is certainly an area of research that deserves a
great deal of attention.
Psychology Online reports on a study investigating the
differences between INTERNAL and EXTERNAL MOTIVATION. The report
states that "Although our society is largely
extrinsically-motivated by external rewards such as money, fame
and power, research has indicated those who are
intrinsically-motivated by inner desires for creativity,
fulfillment and inner satisfaction are psychologically healthier
How can this help you?
The study of health psychology seeks to understand how our
ability to cope with stress can help us to prevent illness and
promote health. Some of these coping mechanisms are naturally
inborn but may be taught to those who lack them. Motivation is
one of the tools that researchers are trying to use as a
combatant of negative stress reactions.
Motivation is something that we use every day. It's what enables
us to survive - to get food because we're hungry, to go to work
to pay the bills or to educate ourselves in order to pursue a
higher goal in life.
How we respond to life's demands can affect our overall health.
How are you classified?
The same report on Psychology Online identified those who
respond to life with negativity or anxiety as most likely to
deal with the physical affects of anger, guilt, nervousness,
frustration and fear. These emotions can cause hypertension and
high blood pressure which can lead to heart attack or stroke.
Other complications include ulcers, arthritis, asthma and kidney
Some therapists suggest that by using positive self-talk and
trying to restructure the WAY we look at events can offset the
physical and mental effects of dealing with negative or
stressful events in life.
Interestingly, people who tend to focus on themselves as the
controller of their fate - in fact 'self-motivated' - are more
likely to feel a sense of control when stressors affect them.
Instead of blaming something or someone else they have the
motivation to deal with a problem and look for a reasonable
solution. This positive behavior helps them to achieve goals and
find personal contentment.
Therapists try to teach patients how to emulate this positive
reaction to stress and use their motivation as a source of
empowerment. Learning to manage stress and using motivation to
set goals, work through a problem or fix it can in turn promote
better mental and physical health.