6 Powerful Pillars of Self-Motivation

What does it really take to become self-motivated? Use these six pillars to reframe your thinking and elevate your game.

According to Psychology Today, motivation is literally “the desire to do things”. Therefore, self-motivation may be described as: “the initiative to begin or continue an activity without any external influence”.

Unfortunately, our motivation is easily affected by circumstances and predispositions, which can result in unfinished tasks, unfulfilled goals and even apathy about a job, relationships and life itself. What then is the remedy to guard against a loss of self-motivation and keep the fires burning to drive achievement and success?

Here are six pillars to construct a self-motivating mindset:

1. Purpose

You were custom-made by God Himself – handcrafted by the Master. Therefore, you have significant eternal value. (Read that again.) Your purpose is found first in the One who ordains your life and every step you take. You have been gifted with talent and have much to offer the world and the people you influence.

True motivation comes from knowing your purpose and the destiny He designed exclusively for you.


2. Peace

Everyone fails. Get over it. Make peace with your past mistakes and failures. Learn from them, but don’t let them hold you back. Too often we give up trying for fear of failing and lose motivation. Let it go and keep moving forward.


3. Perception

Your self-perception frames your thinking. A positive self-perception leads to optimism – the fuel required for action and achievement. Avoid over-inflating or undervaluing your capabilities.

Both can cause a loss of motivation because false self-perceptions lead to challenges with projects getting started, quality, deadlines, deliverables, etc. Instead, use sober judgment (and a coach or mentor) to objectively assess your strengths and limits.


4. Positivity

In order to maintain an optimistic outlook; set mental and emotional boundaries as guards against pessimism. When negative or self-defeating thoughts enter your mind, move them out quickly lest they lead to self-sabotage.


5. Prudence

Regarded as an ancient virtue, prudence is careful good judgment to govern and discipline oneself by the use of reason. Thomas Aquinas said that prudence starts with the “act of inquiry.”

To get the outcomes you want, take the time to do your homework. Read. Learn. Research. Grow. Avoid impulsive thoughts, words, and actions, which typically lead to undesirable outcomes, resulting in loss of motivation.


6. Progress

Finding an answer. Completing a task. Achieving a goal. Each of these stimulates a strong positive emotional response within us. Even solving the simplest problems will kindle your motivation to achieve more. So always track your achievements and draw energy from them when times are tough.


Motivation is a very big topic and many excellent books have been written about it. To begin, start slowly and work you way through each of these six pillars exploring how to apply them based on your circumstances.