A man looking out the horizon filled with mountains

Unveiling the Art of Motivation: The Interplay Between Intrinsic and Extrinsic Influences


In the intricate realm of human behaviour, motivation stands as a powerful driving force that propels us towards our goals and aspirations. But the question that often lingers is whether motivation can be taught, or does it exclusively emanate from within? Furthermore, how does it intertwine with the influence of people around us? Let’s embark on a journey to explore these questions, unveiling the secrets of motivation in a way that takes just a few minutes to learn.


The Genesis of Motivation

At its core, motivation can indeed emerge from within. This intrinsic motivation stems from personal desires, passion, and an innate drive to accomplish something meaningful. It’s that spark that fuels an artist to create, a scientist to innovate, or an athlete to push their limits. In essence, it’s the flame that burns brightly when you’re pursuing something that aligns with your values and interests.

However, the concept of motivation isn’t confined to a solitary realm. It thrives in a dynamic ecosystem, shaped by the interplay of various factors. This is where the role of external influence, particularly people, comes into play.


The Power of External Influence

Imagine a budding musician, Sarah, who’s hesitant to share her songs with the world. She possesses a reservoir of musical talent, yet her tunes remain locked within her heart. It’s in this scenario that external influence can act as a catalyst for her latent motivation.

Sarah’s best friend, Alex, a fellow musician, encourages her to perform at a local open mic night. Sarah, initially apprehensive, accepts the challenge. On that fateful evening, as she strums her guitar and sings her soulful lyrics, she is met with a thunderous applause. It’s at this moment that Sarah experiences the magic of external motivation.

Alex, and the supportive audience, serve as pillars of inspiration. They validate Sarah’s talent and provide her with a taste of external affirmation. This newfound encouragement fuels her motivation, pushing her to pursue her musical journey with newfound vigour.


The Motivation Dance: Intrinsic Meets Extrinsic

The dance of motivation often involves a harmonious blend of intrinsic and extrinsic factors. While intrinsic motivation is the foundation, external influence acts as the wind beneath your wings, propelling you higher.

Think of intrinsic motivation as the roots of a tree, firmly anchoring you to your goals and passions. It’s your personal commitment to excellence, your dreams, and your innate desires. External motivation, on the other hand, acts as the nourishing soil and the sunshine that helps those roots grow stronger.

In Sarah’s case, her intrinsic motivation was her love for music and her desire to share her talent. Alex and the audience merely provided the nurturing environment for her intrinsic motivation to flourish. It was their applause, encouragement, and belief in her that amplified her inner drive.


The Art of Teaching Motivation

So, can motivation be taught? The answer is yes, to a certain extent. While intrinsic motivation often arises naturally from one’s passions and interests, the role of educators, mentors, and peers is to nurture and guide this motivation.

  • Set Meaningful Goals: Teach individuals to set specific, achievable goals that resonate with their interests. Goals provide a sense of purpose and direction, igniting the flames of intrinsic motivation.
  • Provide Constructive Feedback: Constructive criticism and feedback can serve as powerful motivators. Encourage individuals to view feedback not as criticism but as a means to improve and grow.
  • Create a Supportive Environment: Foster a culture of support and encouragement, where individuals feel valued and their efforts are recognised. This external motivation can help sustain their intrinsic drive.
  • Celebrate Achievements: Acknowledge and celebrate accomplishments, no matter how small. Celebrations serve as milestones, reminding individuals of their progress and fuelling their motivation to reach the next one.
  • Lead by Example: As a mentor or role model, exemplify dedication and passion in your pursuits. Your own motivation can be contagious and inspire those around you.


Motivation is a dynamic interplay between intrinsic and extrinsic factors. While it often begins from within, external influences, particularly the encouragement and support of people, can amplify and sustain that motivation. Teaching motivation involves nurturing intrinsic drive and creating an environment where external influences serve as catalysts for success.

So, the next time you’re pondering the nature of motivation, remember this delicate dance. Recognise that motivation, like a beautiful piece of music, is enriched by both its internal melody and the external harmonies that surround it. By understanding and embracing this synergy, you can empower yourself and those around you to reach new heights of achievement.



Photo by NEOM on Unsplash

x Logo: Shield Security
This Site Is Protected By
Shield Security