Understanding Motivation | NLP Blog from Transform Destiny
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Understanding Motivation

Monday, December 8th, 2008 : Read 276 Times

Are you motivated?

Do you know what kind of motivation you have?

Most people don’t think about it, but there are actually different kinds of motivation – two, to be exact: “Toward” motivations and “Away” motivations.

The common analogy is “the Carrot vs the Stick.” While that’s a well known analogy, most people don’t realize that it does describe an actual personality trait. Nor do they take the time to figure out which one motivates the people they interact with.

These motivation styles are an example of another NLP Meta Program called Motivation Direction Filter (refer to my previous post on NLP Meta Programs if you haven’t read it yet for other metaprograms).

Motivation Direction Filter Meta Program

You can easily find out someone’s motivation direction by asking the following question:

“What do you want in a job/relationship/car/your life?”

Listen to the response. You’ll find that people will answer in one of the following ways:

Toward Motivation

A “toward” person is motivated toward what they want or like. They will be motivated by rewards, bonuses and achieving goals. They will want to know what benefits they will reap by getting the outcome. Motivate the toward person with a “carrot.” The “stick” will only offend them and make them angry.

Away Motivation

An “away” person is motivated away from what they don’t want or like. They will will do what it takes to avoid pain and/or suffering and are often highly motivated by their fears. Motivate the Away person with a “stick.” If you try to motivate them with a “carrot,” they simply won’t care.

Of course, things are rarely that black and white. There are varying shades of gray, even with the Motivation Direction Filter, so you may find people Toward With a Little Away, Away With a Little Toward or Both Toward and Away Equally.

In any case, this is one simple pattern that can greatly increase your persuasion skills.

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