• Oct 31, 2017

What motivates you? What drives you to be the best you can be? When you’re working hard, who are you thinking of? What are you thinking about? In this article, I want to talk about the difference between positive motivation and negative motivation. When striving to be the best, at whatever it may be, we should always try to use positive motivation over negative motivation.

I am defining negative motivation as anything you use when you are trying to prove somebody wrong. For example, someone may have once told you that you couldn’t do something; therefore, you set out to prove them wrong. Maybe your competition made you mad and you decided you were going to do everything in your power to be better than them so you can bring them down. These are both examples of negative motivation. To put it simply: negative motivation allows someone else to have the power and control over you.

On the contrary, positive motivation isn’t based upon how someone mistreated you or when someone made you mad. It isn’t based upon showing somebody else up. It is based upon understanding what you want out of life and then doing everything you can to make that happen. Simply put, positive motivation allows yourself to have the power and control over your own life.

The problem with negative motivation is that, while it may work for a period of time, it will never bring about the desired goal you are hoping to accomplish. When you are utilizing negative motivation, you are literally placing your happiness in the hands of others. Let me illustrate this with a story.

There was once a man who, when he was a child, was always told by his parents how he would amount to nothing. He was constantly being told how worthless he was. He eventually used this as negative motivation to be “somebody” and ended up owning a multi-million dollar company. Years later, he returned to his parent’s house to let them know how wrong they were. When he informed his parents of all of his accomplishments, they looked at him and told him that he was still worthless. Upon hearing these words, he returned back to his home and business and made a commitment to keep working harder and harder so he could one day prove to them his worth. While the man continued to work and work, that day never came and the man was never satisfied with his life because he still saw himself as worthless.

Don’t work for something in hopes to make somebody else see your worth. Work for something because you already know your worth. Make goals that are positive. Be motivated for yourself. Be motivated for your friends. Be motivated for your children. Be motivated for your family. Be motivated by your own happiness. When you do this, not only will you reach your desired goals, but you will be much happier and satisfied with your life. Take back control of your life with positive motivation!


Kevin Pendergrass



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