What is the real meaning of Self-motivation? Taking a deep dive into the ocean!



What is the meaning of Self-motivation?

“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man: true nobility is being superior to your former self.”

-Ernest Miller Hemingway, the author of The Old Man and The Sea

Now this quotation from the famous American novelist might sound irrelevant at first because I was supposed to be talking about 

What the heck is self-motivation?

I will not be suggesting you go to the gym and get six-pack abs to impress the sissy girls or get a muscular Porsche and ride around like a pimp with your flashy glasses and the Gucci jacket. 

The more carefully you read the quote, the deeper you will be able to comprehend and take a dive into the real meaning of the word Self-motivation.

Do you know you have tremendous power at your fingertips? Yes, I am not joking. You have the knowledge about the world in your hands. You need to just blurt out “Hey Google!” and the robot will reply back with what you want to search! 

You can search for any motivational videos or motivational stories about the way beyond-your-imagination successful entrepreneurs who rose from the ashes like a phoenix and shot up like a rocket towards the sky. Rockets need that much fuel, and they had that. Is having that fuel enough? 

How resilient are you?

The Tesla and Space X founder also called the real-life “fictional” iron man Elon Musk would agree with me as he was tensed about the crash of his last rocket due to miscalculations which could result in a poverty-stricken life for him with no rent for his room or any food to eat. He was heavily in debt. 

Calculations formed the part of the rocket. A big part indeed! I do not know how many times he failed, but it was enough to make him give up and cripple him down with grief. He tried and tried and tried. He had his fuel. 

This is not one example. There are hundreds and thousands of next to impossible people who had achieved feats that they themselves would not have dreamt of. One part of self-motivation is the ability to rise up from the deep shit hole, knowing very well that you fall again if you are not careful enough. 

You can read inspirational stories of some iconic personalities from here.

The lessons that you had imbibed earlier, which caused you to fail will now lead you to success. 

Life is so unpredictable that we all lose hope. As long as there is hope, we always tend to try hard until we achieve it. The moment our hopes are mixed in the dust, we stop thinking of another beautiful morning and tend to halt our lives there. Being self-motivated is all about sticking to hope. 

Now coming back to Earnest Hemingway’s subtle quote, 

How does his quote define the meaning of Self-motivation? 

Just ask one question from yourself? 

Are you better than yesterday? 

Being self-motivated is comparing yourself to a person that is YOU. You can scream to yourself that you are a failure just because you failed at something, or you can scream yourself to be ugly just because a friend of yours passed a vague comment on you. 

If Maya Angelou had thought herself to be ugly, she would not have been a famous “beautiful” personality now. Remember that self-aggrandizing yourself is the opposite of self-motivation. 

You have an ugly habit of making comparisons with other people around you. 

Say no to Comparison.

Before I emphasize how to be self-motivated, you must be well acquainted with the universal truth that no two DNAs are the same. Even twins have different DNAs. Then how can you expect yourself to be as good a dancer as him? 

Also, how can you expect the other person to be as good a singer as you are! In schools, you are not taught to realize your capabilities based on what your strengths are, rather you will be judged based on “hypothetically important” marks on your report cards. 

Self-motivation is a very delicate term and needs to be handled carefully. It is a phenomenon that controls your life. Just like there is breathing without which you cannot live, there is self-motivation without which you are already dead before you are alive. 

You can build up a routine today and fail to follow the next day. That is how self-motivation vanishes in an instant!

Or is that term really called self-motivation? That was just an adrenaline rush inside you that is just a temporary biological process. Just as I am dreaming about being the best motivational speaker in the world with a lot of people coming to hear me and willing to change this world for the better, there is a big adrenaline rush inside that may last as long as I am writing this line! 

That is how dopamine- the happiness hormones are released. Self-motivation is a long term or a lifetime phenomenon. You just need a strong, in fact, the strongest reason to stay alive. That is the biggest contributor to your motivation. 

Knowing the purpose of your life!

I know why I am alive. I know my purpose in life. I know my vision. My vision is not as minion an aim as passing an exam with a hundred percent marks. It is much bigger than anybody or anything. It is much bigger than me too! 

The taste of freedom that you are enjoying now as an Indian was a vision converted to reality by the immortals that will remain to be due to their immortal visions. 

Needless to mention about Mahatma Gandhi or the Netaji or the fearless Bhagat Singh and the dauntless Rani Laxmi Bai of Jhansi or Martin Luther King from America and the resilient Abraham Lincoln, all had their visions lighted up just like the first bulb lit by the smart and persistent inventor Edison. 

By talking about these people, I would not try to make special references to these people and highlight where you and I lack. Rather I will try to encourage you to try to capitalize on any situation that you come across. 

There are millions of people in the world today who are not as successful as the ones I mentioned. However, they are incredibly successful in their own parts. You can see your native businessmen or a big personality in your area or locality or even your country. These people have one thing in common. They are self-driven.

How many times have you heard about the crow and the pebbles’ story? A crow put some pebbles in a pot to elevate the water level to quench its thirst. A crow can be this intelligent is not what we need to emphasize upon. What you need to notice is you can put pebbles in the pot too! Now, what do I mean by this?

Get hungry.

Imagine you are hungry, and food is being snatched away from you. Your survival instinct will impel you to go on a hunt for food. This survival instinct, however, is purely biological in nature, and food is a basic need for anyone. 

The same thing goes for quenching your thirst. The crow was self-driven or rather biologically impelled to look for water otherwise death was inevitable. 

There is a reason to mention the term survival instinct. What if there is a mental instinct- a self propeller that drives you to do something no matter what? A person can be driven by only 3 things to earn money- passion, greed, and lack of money. These 3 things can act as a self propeller or speaking of it in general terms as self-motivation. 

There is a motivational story that is told generations after generations. In that story, a guru pushes down the face of his disciple in the water of the seas. The disciple is panting hard for breath. He tries his best to pull out his now swollen face from the water but to no avail. He is trapped in the hands of his guru. What he could only think about at that moment was breath. 

Breath becomes so important for him that he failed to see the problems of his life and complaining about them. It was only a breath he needed. 

When the guru finally pulls him out of the water, he asks the disciple what he desired for when he was in the water. He replied, “I understood your lesson Guruji!”

If you do not see the lack of something in your life, there will be no self propeller or self-motivation to kick start you in the path to achieve that thing. 

Paulo Coelho, the author of the Alchemist, once said,

“Fight for your dreams, and your dreams will fight for you.”

Making an aim or vision of your life as your survival instinct is not the only way to be self-motivated.  The next step is failures that are not life-ending! 

You can get demotivated after a mistake you made. Special attention is to be made to words “mistakes” and “failures”. You make plenty of mistakes, but the moment you make the same mistake again, you can call yourself a failure. 

Failures vs mistakes

Learn to make a distinction between mistakes and failures, for it will enhance your own self-motivation and override any feelings of self-harm and grief. Let us recount how many times Thomas Alva Edison failed before he lit the first bulb. You can see the amount of effort and self-motivation that was required to light the first bulb, which can be switched on at the press of a button today!

Schools will not teach you not to make mistakes, whereas real-life will encourage you to make mistakes. A mistake made more than once is a failure. And failure will demotivate you. 

Self-motivation is making mistakes and moving on with new wisdom. It is not stopping after making a mistake or even a failure. It is just moving on to build your purpose of life or your vision into a reality. 

How do you remain self-motivated? There are a lot of videos and content on the internet preaching on this topic and arising some sort of fake self-motivation in you. 

You can find the top 10 or top 100 ways to get motivated and kickstart your day, but if they were so easy and direct solution, you would not have been reading my article. For being self-motivated all the time, you need to discover your why. 

Just like businesses need their whys to be really profitable just like Simon Sinek, through his book “Start with why”, preached the concept of dealing with the why of business existence, you as an individual also need to explore your why. 

This discovery is the biggest discovery you can make in your life. The greatest discovery of Christopher Columbus lay not in the discovery of America but lay in the discovery of his purpose that is creating a niche in the exploration of the world. He was born to travel and explore the world. He had already dreamt of America before discovering it. 

If you want to be self-motivated, you need to understand the importance of the purpose of your life, which should be much bigger than you yourself. 

If you are a student and pursuing a profession, look for ways that the profession can contribute to your vision of life. This way, you can focus on both your profession and passion. 

Self-motivation comes from within, not without. The motivators can, at the most charge you with an adrenaline rush, but that is temporary until and unless you realize you are going to contribute big to everyone, including you. 

Self-motivation is not temporary. It is permanent. 

Deepak Chopra, a prominent Indian American author, rightly stated

“You must find a place inside yourself where nothing is impossible.” 

This place is where the light will lead you to treasure through the power of self-motivation.

You can also read other articles on self-motivation.

How Sand Mandalas portray impermanence! The meaning of self-motivation is clear

How iconic personalities define the meaning of self-motivation

Post a Comment