Motivation, or what motivates us, like everything else, is different for everyone. As I researched motivators for a past blog post, ‘Two Motivators – Pain or Pleasure’, I learned that there are really only 2 motivators; avoiding pain or moving toward pleasure. When I thought about it, I realized that this is true, at least it was for me.
To put this idea to the test, I started thinking about tasks, or projects, I completed in the past that I really didn’t want to do. I thought about the motivation that helped me get moving to get these things done. It started with the reason behind why I actually wanted to do these things.
Something is not working in our lives, or environments, that cause us to contemplate taking on these projects. They are causing us some sort of pain associated with what is not working. We want to move away from this pain, which inevitably moves us toward pleasure.
A few years ago, I had a need to update a bathroom in my house. A total remodel was not in the budget, so I opted to perform an inexpensive update mostly by myself. Part of that update included repainting the existing vanity. It was something I put off because I really, really don’t like to paint!
The pieces of the vanity that I could remove, the doors & drawers, would be easier to sand & paint elsewhere. My work space of choice, and due to no other viable options, ended up being in the garage. I like to keep my car parked in the garage. It would have to live in the driveway until I finished my project, hence my motivation to complete painting the vanity.
The pain was that I couldn’t park my car in the garage until the work was done. The idea is to make it difficult NOT to complete the project. In other words, what needs to happen to ultimately force you to “get r done”, in the words of Larry The Cable Guy. That caused me pain. It’s funny how little things like that causes us pain. It’s not a big thing but still causes a pain of sorts.
I moved my car into the driveway, set up a table, covered it with a tarp and started this piece of the project. This was actually the last piece. Everything else was done, including the vanity shell. My motivation to complete this project was to move away from pain.
So, what is your motivation to complete a project?