If you have ever wondered how others work miracles while we spend time ruing the past or cursing our present, be sure there is only a thin line of separation between those achievers and us. The difference lies in that they know where they are going, while we don’t; they now how to get there, while we are lost in the maze of life. What’s more, we haven’t the fuel that drives them, the fuel that goes by the name of Motivation.

What really is motivation? It’s a whole set of motives that prompts one to act in a particular way. These motives may come naturally to some people; they may have to be induced in others. Let’s say, a young man is naturally inclined to music or sports, and only a little towards academics. He may begin to show some discipline in life if he realizes that even a career in music or sports is academically rigorous.

That is to say, having a goal in sight can motivate us. Of course, happy are those who blend their natural inclination with a profitable life occupation, for they will be self-motivated. In fact, self-motivation is the best form of motivation for a student or employee; it dispenses with coaxing. There is nothing better than finding good reason to do what we are doing; even if difficulties come our way, we will find the way out and, for the love of the final goal, be on track again.

But this is only a model situation; it exists for a fortunate few, while the bulk of people may experience negativity – worry, disappointment, frustration. Motivation itself can feel contrived if there is an element of coercion. That is when one has to either refocus – if one has any stamina or presence of mind left – or one can seek help. Nowadays, counselling is only a step away, be in educational institutions or at workplaces. With a wee bit of interest and initiative, there can easily be a turnaround, and like the proverbial sunflower, we can bask in sunny glory once again.

All things considered, there seem to be two golden rules behind feeling a motivation boost: One, to believe in oneself, and the other, to work smartly. Believing in self is nothing but being grateful to the Good Lord who has made each of us unique. He calls us to open out, unfold, and expand our potentials, for there is none other who can do what we have been destined to do.

However, there is no short cut. Our life mission will be complete only when we have put in our all into what we are doing, keeping at it, without longing for a brainwave. To quote Edison: “Genius is one per cent inspiration and ninety-nine per cent perspiration.” Equally true what that other genius called Pasteur has said: “Chance favours the prepared mind.”

Motivation is a powerful engine; it can move mountains. All we have to do is keep working while we wait for the miracle to happen.

(News and Views, Vol. XI, No. 1, April 2016)