In life there are two main types of motivation, intrinsic, coming from inside yourself and extrinsic, coming from outside. Generally, employers rely on extrinsic motivators like pay or benefits as an incentive.
But depending on external work motivators is a short-term game for both employers and employees. It is estimated that the positive impact of increased salary or bonus expires in less than 6 months. Many people spend careers chasing rewards and yet can end up unsatisfied. This behaviour is like constantly seeking external sources of water to fill your emotional well instead of digging deep and finding your own reserves.
What can be more beneficial is understanding your internal motivators in a work environment.
A common mistake is assuming that an employer is responsible for all your personal development needs, but that is not their job. Each of us has agency and we are responsible for our own well-being and success. How we approach work will largely dictate our experience for good or bad.
Rather than moving on and packing up your motivational issues into a banker box and bringing them to your next job stop and focus within. It can be helpful to think about the parts of your job that you find most rewarding and equally what do you like least.
Figure out ways that you can either lean into the good and minimize the impact of the others. There will always be parts of work that are challenging, after all that is why they call it work and you get paid! However, constantly procrastination or complaining about the parts of work you don’t like it is merely exacerbating the problem.
Explore ways to tackle routine parts of your job in a positive way – get them out of the way early and reward yourself when they are done – turn that metaphorical work frown up-side-down. Attitude is the one area where we have total control.
Also consider what can you do inside or outside of work to enhance the things that you find stimulating. If working with people is your thing then can you mentor others or get involved in industry organisations to give back. Find more ways to accentuate the type of work that you find intrinsically motivating.
Appreciating that a good job, well done, is its own reward, can give you an eternal spring of motivation.