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The Psychology of Motivation

Date Started: 1-04-23

Date Ended: 22-04-23

Author Name: Mariyam Mohammed Abdul Jaleel.

Qualifications: BA (Journalism, Psychology, and English Literature), MSc Clinical Psychology, Certification in Behaviour Therapy, Diploma in Child Psychology.

Designation: Former Admin officer & Consultant Psychologist, ACRO Mental Health Services

Word Count: 396

Reading Time: 5 minutes.

Reviewed and edited by: Aishwarya Krishna Priya

High performance is only possible for highly motivated individuals who are willing to put in additional effort (1). Hunter (1990) discovered that even in relatively simple roles, there was a 19% difference in value added voluntary behaviour between "superior" and "standard" performers (2, 3). For extremely complicated assignments, it was 48% (4).

A cause for doing anything is called a motive (5). The degree and direction of conduct, as well as the elements that lead people to act in particular ways, are all aspects of motivation (6). The term "motivation" can be used to describe a variety of things, including people's goals, how they choose their goals, and methods others use to try to modify their behaviour (7).

According to Arnold, there are three facets to motivation.

1. Direction - what someone is attempting to achieve

2. Effort - is the degree of one's efforts

3. Persistence - refers to how long someone tries (8, 9).

Motivation is described as the desire for and activity toward behaviour that is goal-directed. This idea is crucial in psychology, business, education, and other fields (10). For instance, we want our kids to be good and finish their schoolwork (11). Businesses want the public to purchase their goods (12).

We all need motivation to achieve our goals, but what inspires motivation? The necessity or reason for doing something, or the inclination to do something, is characterized as motivation (13). In actuality, "psychological forces determine a person's level of effort and level of persistence in the face of obstacles (14)."

People have essential psychological needs that must be continuously satisfied for them to develop and perform at their best, according to motivation theories (15).

In conclusion, motivation is an essential part of one's life. We must always take the best of what's given to us and try to incorporate the same in our lives. Life can get uneasy and tough sometimes and we tend to lose focus from our goals. It's quite easy to identify low motivation in ourselves and seeking professional mental health services to assist you with your concerns is the right way to go forward.

If you or anyone you know is experiencing low motivation in their lives, please identify the same and approach a mental health service provider at the earliest. To know more about the services offered by ACRO Mental Health & Wellness, you can reach us at (+91) 91004-23015.

Audio-visual credits:

Photo by Nik on Unsplash


1.O’NeillJune 27 C, Pm 2022 at 5:42. Understanding the Psychology of Motivation [Internet]. Counselling Connection. 2022. Available from:

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10.Anselme P. The uncertainty processing theory of motivation. Behavioural Brain Research [Internet]. 2010 Apr [cited 2020 Feb 24];208(2):291–310. Available from:

11.Weisz E, Zaki J. Motivated empathy: a social neuroscience perspective. Current Opinion in Psychology [Internet]. 2018 Dec;24:67–71. Available from:

12.King RB, McInerney DM. Culturalizing motivation research in educational psychology. British Journal of Educational Psychology [Internet]. 2016 Feb 9 [cited 2020 Jun 4];86(1):1–7. Available from:

13.Cosmides L, Tooby J. Evolutionary Psychology: New Perspectives on Cognition and Motivation. Annual Review of Psychology [Internet]. 2013 Jan 3;64(1):201–29. Available from:

14.Dörnyei Z. Motivation in action: Towards a process-oriented conceptualisation of student motivation. British Journal of Educational Psychology [Internet]. 2000 Dec [cited 2019 Aug 21];70(4):519–38. Available from:

15.Koch S. The current status of motivational psychology. Psychological Review [Internet]. 1951 [cited 2020 Jan 27];58(3):147–54. Available from:


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