Blueprint >> Motivation

Disclaimer: This document is in raw form as I process and distill 4 years-worth of my personal development notes. Expect some typos and cryptic language for now. I will be updating frequently and polishing up.

Prescription: Understand how to generate motivation in yourself. Create a compelling vision for your future.
Related Concepts: Extrinsic Motivation, Life Purpose, Self-Actualization, Vision

What is Motivation?

The idea that there are different types of motivation (some good, some bad) and that you can control how motivated you feel.

Why is it Important?

Imagine being able to generate fresh motivation for anything that you ever wanted to do. That's powerful! You can actually build the drive to take massive action.

Motivation Videos

[coming soon...]

Coach Leo Gura
Hire me as your coach. Super-charge your life. Email me now!
  • Redesign your life to align with your purpose
  • Mindsets and tools for exceptional success

Motivation: Key Points

What is motivation? Simply a drive to act. When you feel motivated, you feel excited and ready to tackle obstacles.

Motivation = vision = excitement. If you want to feel excited about your life, have a grand, detailed vision of what your life will look like in the future.

Two types of motivation: extrinsic and intrinsic. Extrinsic motivation is garbage. It's too shallow to generate massive long-term results. Extrinsic motivation doesn't even deserve to be called motivation. Remove all extrinsic motivation from you life and focus entirely on building intrinsic motivation.

Two more types of motivation: positive and negative. Negative motivation is garbage. It cannot sustain the creation of anything great. Negative motivation peters out as you get closer to completing your goal, while positive motivation keeps building. Eliminate all forms of negative motivation from your life.

Two more types of motivation: needs and growth. Needs motivation is about satisfying your basis needs like food, shelter, friendship, sex, employment, etc. Needs motivation diminishes as you fulfill the need. Growth motivation is about satisfying your more noble, growth needs like education, mastery, building deep relationships, pursuing ideals like justice, equality, or excellence. 3 Growth motivation stays strong even as you get closer to your goals. Goals like understand and mastery don't really have a ceiling.

Positive, intrinsic motivation can be created. Vision creates true motivation. A vision is a grand, detailed mental picture of how you want the future to be. Sometimes visions come about accidentally, without any deliberate intent on your part. These are the cases where you find yourself naturally motivated. Other times, you will want to create motivation for a project or endeavor from scratch. In this case you need to create a compelling vision deliberately.

  • What do you really want?
  • What could you accomplish?
  • What does the greatest potential of this project look like?
  • What does your personal greatest potential look like?
  • What is the ideal?
  • How could this be more awesome?
  • How much would others benefit from this?
  • How much would society and humanity benefit from this?

If you're not motivated and you want to be, sit down and start imagining what the future could look like for you. Don't pull your punches. Imagine without worrying about how you'll make it happen. Imagine, visualize, and write down your vision. Examples:

  • How would you feel if you looked ripped, with a 6-pack?
  • How would you feel if you had a business you really loved?
  • How would you feel if you had that awesome career?
  • How would you feel if you were in a perfect marriage?
  • How would you feel if you published a book?
  • How would you feel if you lived on a tropical island?

Creating motivation from scratch is an involved process. You don't just sit down and write out your vision once. That might give a nice short-term burst of excitement, but it won't last. You need think about your vision consistently over the course of weeks and months. The more you visualize it, the more concrete you make it, the more you repeat it and fuse your identity with it, the more motivated you will get. You should be thinking about your vision every day.

Your vision must be:

  • Stated in the positive — Think and write about what you want to create, not what you don't want.
  • Grand — If your vision is too small, it won't be exciting. Come up with an ambitious vision that scares you and requires you to set up.
  • Aligned with your highest values — Don't create a vision that conflicts with your values.
  • Feel intuitively right — The vision should make logical sense, but more importantly is should be a path with heart. It should resonate with your body, not just your mind.

Once you've defined your vision, keep stoking it as much as you can so it doesn't die out. Ways to stoke a vision:

  • Write it down in your Mission Statement and read it every day
  • Journal about it consistently
  • Do affirmations on it
  • Do visualization and seeding on it
  • Create a vision board
  • Brainstorm new ways you can bring it to life
  • Think about it throughout your day, while you're in the shower, driving, eating, etc.
  • Talk about it with friends, family, and colleagues
  • Take action towards it every day, even if its just a baby step.

Think about the impact your vision will have on others. Who else besides yourself will benefit? How are you going to improve the world or people's lives by doing this?

Make sure your vision is creative, not merely attempting to solve a problem. Robert Fritz makes an important distinction between oscillating structures and creative structures. An oscillating structure gets set up whenever you're taking action to avoid a problem. A creative structure gets set up whenever you're taking action simply because you desire creation to exist. 1 Only creative structures can advance you. Oscillating structures will keep you stuck at about the same level of success.


  1. Path of Least Resistance, Robert Fritz
  2. Mind Power, John Kehoe
  3. Towards a Psychology of Being, Abraham Maslow
Coach Leo Gura
Hire me as your coach. Super-charge your life. Email me now!
  • Redesign your life to align with your purpose
  • Mindsets and tools for exceptional success