How to Motivate Others

How to Motivate Others

Would you like to know how to motivate others?

Perhaps you run your own business and you need to motivate your staff.

It could be that you are a leader in your organization and tasked with motivating your team.

Also, it might be that you hang around a lot of demotivated individuals, and you feel the urge to uplift and motivate them.

Whatever the case, motivation is very important on every level, and it is an art that should be learned and mastered.

Motivation is often difficult to come by.

People are faced with a lot of challenges that might make it hard to find self-motivation.

It could be a lack of motivation to get up every morning and carry out a day-to-day activity.

Sometimes, the lack of motivation could be at work, causing one to get unproductive.

When motivation is low, this can have a lot of adverse effects on the affected individual.

If you hold a leadership position where you work, you would understand that you have the responsibility to drive motivation.

However, it is worth noting that motivation is not something you make people do.

Individuals are the only ones who can motivate themselves.

But you as a leader have the duty of making decisions and actions that will drive motivation.

Additionally, the need to motivate others might arise when you have people close to you who are affected by low motivation.

This might include friends and family.

No doubt you want the best for them.

So what are the ways of motivating others, why you should take up this responsibility, and some common causes of lack of motivation.

What Does it Mean to Motivate Others? 

Motivation can be defined as the process or force that guides a person or a group of people to perform certain tasks, take certain actions or make some decisions.

It is often described as the drive behind every behavior or activity.

In line with that, when someone does not have the necessary drive to perform a particular action or make a decision, it is said that they lack motivation.

Motivating others, therefore, is a conscious effort to inspire others, and uplift them towards getting a positive reaction from them.

It refers to all the processes you go through and actions you take to make others perform a necessary activity or task.

That means you would need to directly affect their enthusiasm and morale in the specific area you are looking at getting results.

You might be tasked with the responsibility of motivating others if you work on a team and head such a team.

Your actions as the leader would either demoralize your team or inspire them to success.

When you make the right decisions that show support for your team members, this can result in building motivation among them.

On the contrary, when you make bad choices or the wrong decisions, it can equally lead to a lack of motivation.

Sometimes though, you might not be given the responsibility to motivate others, but you take it up yourself.

This is what you find from parents or guardians especially.

These are interested in seeing the success and progress of their wards and willingly offer their help when their motivation levels drop low.

Whatever the situation, the actions, and decisions you take to ensure that someone operates at the highest level of competence, dedication, commitment, and enthusiasm are what motivating others is all about.

Why Is Motivating Others Important 

Whether the person is your son/daughter, a close friend, a neighbor, a spouse, or an employee on your team, the importance of providing timely and effective motivation cannot be overemphasized.

When people suffer from a lack of motivation or low morale, it can affect them in several ways.

If it is in the workplace, it can negatively impact productivity and hence affect the business.

Additionally, if the lack of motivation is suffered by someone who is forging a career path, this might cause indecision and slow down the progress.

Because of this, being a source of motivation to others is not something to take lightly.

Rather, it is one you should carry out with the utmost level of seriousness and commitment if you ever have the opportunity.

Here are some of the reasons why motivating others is important:

It Helps in Building Productivity 

A lack of motivation still ranks as one of the major causes of reduced productivity today, either for an individual’s daily task or an employee’s duties.

Before one can be at the topmost level of productivity, carrying out duties with all diligence and getting results, the motivation must be high.

And why not actually, as this is one of the main drives behind our every action and decision.

Hence, when you motivate others, you are helping them to find their strength and energy, these which they need to get up, get active, and break boundaries.

It Helps in Improving Well-Being 

When you motivate others, you are not only helping in building their productivity but equally contributing to general well-being.

This is because a high level of motivation has been linked to human physiology.

What this means is that when motivation is low, it tends to affect how humans function, messing with their emotional state.

Being highly motivated on the other hand helps you to maintain a healthy and positive outlook, which is a recipe for success and happiness.

Motivation Causes Increased Engagement 

In your school, do you notice that some students are more reserved than others and hardly participate in school activities?

Or in your workplace, are there employees who would usually not contribute at meetings or air their opinions when you need it?

One of the reasons for this could be a lack of motivation.

When people are not motivated or suffer from low morale, they tend to keep to themselves or stay in their shells.

These hardly interact with others or share their opinions and contributions.

On the other hand, when there is a strong motivation, you will quickly see the effect of this in how engaged the individuals are in whatever activity going on around them.

It Leads to Job Satisfaction 

Every employer is concerned about job satisfaction for their team of employees.

One of the factors that have been shown to improve job satisfaction in the workplace is motivation.

A lot of people wouldn’t mind staying put in an organization where they feel motivated to always give their best.

The way it works is in the motivation making them more efficient, which in turn leads to great results and hence job satisfaction.

Motivation Makes for Easy Adaptation 

There are times when people face changing circumstances and situations.

At such times, it might be very difficult to adapt to the change.

This would require a lot of motivation to come to grips with the new reality and make the adaptation.

Hence, when you motivate others, they might find this adaptation easier to come by.

It Helps to Achieve Focus 

Distractions are commonplace, especially in the workplace.

There are a lot of reasons why a person might suffer distraction at work.

One of them is when motivation is low.

A lack of motivation can make one easily switch attention and focus to less important things.

Therefore, when you motivate others, you can help them find the needed focus to commit to a task and see it to completion.

Motivating Others Leads to Personal Fulfillment 

Sometimes motivating others goes with mentorship and guidance.

And from experience, it is clear that having a share in helping others reach their goals by motivating them also contributes to your own personal feeling of fulfillment and satisfaction.

Hence, when motivating others, you are not only helping them, but you also stand to benefit.

Identifying Some Common Causes of Lack of Motivation 

Before you can effectively help others to build up their motivation, it is important that you know what is responsible for their motivation problem.

It is that way of trying to get solutions to every type of problem in life; identifying the problem is the first step towards getting the solution.

And this is definitely not an exemption.

Take a look at some of the very common reasons why someone might suffer a lack of motivation, so you know how to help them.

Lack of Purpose 

If you know someone who is struggling with getting the right motivation for his/her personal or professional endeavor, a lack of purpose might be the cause.

Your purpose is your objective, the main reason for doing something.

Unless this is clear in a person’s mind, there is only an extent to which they can stay committed.

Many people have lost motivation on their career path because of not really knowing the “why” of what they are doing.

It is, therefore, necessary to help these ones find the motivation to continue.

Lack of Self Belief 

For some, they have the goals they want to pursue clearly before them, but they do not have the self-belief that they can.

Because of this, they might even avoid trying altogether or come up with many reasons why they cannot make it work.

Self-doubt also might make one start to self-sabotage and lack the needed motivation to achieve their goals.

The Fear of Failure 

The fear of failure and self-doubt work hand in hand.

When you have an innate fear of failing, you tend to feel that it is not worth trying.

This can start to cause you undue anxiety and even procrastination.

And all these are recipes for a lack of motivation.


We see this play out many times in the workplace, where one might feel tired and demoralized because of stress and exhaustion.

When you suffer exhaustion, possibly from your workload, it takes its toll on both your physical and mental health.

You tire easily, and this exhaustion would make it hard for you to find motivation.

Unrealistic Expectations 

Unrealistic expectations come in various forms, such as setting goals that are unachievable or having an unrealistic timeline for your goals.

One of the major characteristics of great goals is that they are achievable. Another one is that they should be realistic and time-bound.

When your goals do not align with all these, there is a very slim chance of success and hence a lack of motivation can set it.

Living a Sedentary Lifestyle

If you are fond of living a sedentary lifestyle, you are treading an unhealthy path.

This can adversely affect your health, making you suffer physically and psychologically.

The result of this is that you suffer a lack of motivation sometimes because your lifestyle is affecting you in every way.

How to Motivate Others – Steps You Can Take 

So far, you have seen some of the reasons why a person might suffer a loss of morale and need motivation.

You’ve also seen the advantages or benefits of having strong motivation in every area of life.

However, as culpable as an individual might be in his/her lack of motivation, there are things you can do to help.

Here are some of the steps you can take to motivate others, be it in the workplace or otherwise:

Help Them Find Their Purpose/Goals/Objectives 

Do you know someone who is struggling with motivation in their career path or other day-to-day activities?

As we noted earlier, the reason might be due to them lacking a purpose.

It could also be not having their objectives for such tasks or activities clearly defined.

If that is the case, you can help them find their purpose and clearly define their goals.

Note though that it is not your responsibility to set the goals for these individuals unless you are the business owner or team leader trying to motivate employees.

If you are the latter, then, it is definitely your responsibility to set goals and help them reach those goals.

On the other hand, if these are just individuals you feel an obligation to motivate, you will need to direct them and help them find their path.

Once you clearly define purpose and objectives, motivation comes easily.

Show a Fine Example 

People generally learn better by watching others and copying their examples.

This is especially important when trying to motivate others in the workplace.

As a leader, you can make a lot of rules and set guidelines, you can also delegate as many responsibilities as you wish, but the most important thing is what you do.

Therefore, do not just demand things from people and expect them to find motivation.

Even at work, before delegating, you need to show your employees that those tasks are achievable by beginning the process.

When they watch how you go about it and the commitment level, they are also more likely to follow suit.

Set Milestones for Them 

This strategy applies when you are trying to motivate others outside the professional setting, and also professionally.

Milestones are great and essential for building motivation because they do not make goals and tasks too overwhelming.

Therefore, you can help them break down their goals into achievable milestones.

When they are able to reach certain milestones and tick these off their list, it is a great source of motivation to push for the next one.

Ask for Their Source of Intrinsic Motivation

At the end of the day, you can only help to put in place certain measures that will motivate others but you can’t force motivation on them.

The sole responsibility of motivation rests on the individuals themselves.

That is why it is essential that you have that discussion with the person, to know what it is that motivates them.

You might be thinking that certain things would adequately motivate your employees or others you seek to motivate, but you would be wrong.

Hence, do not be quick to take a guess or do what you feel would make them motivated. having this conversation with them will guide you accordingly.

Emphasize Their Skills and Areas of Strengths 

One reason why some people lose motivation is because of self-doubt.

This comes from arising from amplifying their weakness and not focusing on their areas of strength. You have a role to play here if you seek to motivate others.

Pay attention to special skills that these ones have, and their areas of strengths.

If they are not seeing these or their weaknesses have overshadowed it, you can bring it to the fore.

Putting emphasis on the skills of others and areas where they are doing well will go a long way in helping them see themselves in a different light.

They might begin to also develop the needed self-belief to drive motivation.

You should be careful though not to flatter them or exaggerate these skills or talents.

Because they will see through it and you might not get the results you want.

Note and Help Celebrate their Achievements 

A lot of people struggle with finding motivation simply because they do not focus on what they’ve been able to achieve. Rather on what they cannot achieve.

If that is the case with those you want to motivate, it might help to direct them to their achievements, no matter how small. You can also help them celebrate these achievements.

When one makes discernable progress in life and achieves something big, it has the effect of building the needed motivation to go for more.

This is because the feeling that comes with success is very addictive and you’d always want to have it again.

Therefore, celebrating success and achievements can go a long way in motivating others.

Avoid Unfair or Harsh Criticism 

This is very common with some parents, guardians, mentors, or even employers.

These ones unfairly criticize those under them with the goal of getting the best out of them. But that method is counterproductive.

Instead of motivating them, it ends up making them lose their morale.

Instead of criticizing others unfairly, focus on their good sides or what they are doing well. Offer them words of encouragement.

You will find that this would help you get their morale up.

Recognize and Reward Them 

We all probably see the advantage of this while growing up.

Whereby parents in a bid to motivate their kids towards success in school would make promises of rewards for good results.

It works almost all the time.

When there is a reward to look forward to, motivation comes easily.

Therefore, whether it is motivating a student, a child, a friend or mentee, or an employee in the workplace, practice recognition and have a reward system.

This always works and has proven effective in motivating others.

Conclusion – How to Motivate Others

If you ever have the opportunity to motivate others, you should appreciate such an opportunity.

The fulfillment and satisfaction that comes from seeing those you help get their motivation levels up and succeed are incomparable.

And this is just one of the many benefits that come from motivating others.

In order to be successful here though, it is important that you first work to motivate yourself, and also set a good example.

Then follow all the others methods we have so far discussed.

If you do all these, you can be a very good motivator, or even become a motivational speaker.