A Balanced Motivation: The Best Way to Learn

· August 11, 2018

Napoleon Hill once said: “Whatever the mind of a man can conceive and believe, it can achieve”, but how so? Can it be done using any method? Probably not. Regardless, there’s one method that could actually be useful. It’s balanced motivation.

A balanced motivation means exactly what the name suggests: finding a balance in the things we enjoy. Occasionally, we believe what really gets us closer to our goals is our ego or the result and not the actual work and process. This thought can cause you to lack balance between what you currently do and what you want to accomplish.

“The starting point of all achievement is desire.”

-Napoleon Hill-

The importance of having a balanced motivation

We’re focusing on the theories from the UPAD Psychology and Coaching School to explain this phenomenon. This institution has developed several techniques to help children find their true motivation and not get distracted from their goals and their right path, which is learning.


Happy boy drawing after finding his motivation.

At the end of the day, we must go through a series of learning processes in order to reach our goals. During said process, it’s important to keep our motivations in mind so that we always value the experience. This is where we differentiate between two possible paths: one oriented towards the ego and one oriented towards hard work.

  • Orientation towards the ego leads people to better themselves for others. The person’s value relies on their interpersonal relationships. They always try to impress others by being the best ones at everything.
  • Orientation towards hard work leads people to better themselves for themselves. They develop their own abilities from a physical level to a psychological level.

Both orientations are compatible and can coexist. This coexistence develops in most cases, although one of them is always more dominant.

The current picture regarding the management of motivation

According to UPAD’s experience, motivation oriented towards the result is the one that’s currently being reinforced instead of the other two. What does this mean? It means the achievement of the goal is the most important thing, making everything that’s not related to the goal irrelevant. The journey and time are resources that we necessarily have to invest. It’ll be an investment we’ll later classify as a success or failure depending on whether we reached our goal or not.

However, according to UPAD’s experts, focusing on the motivation towards hard work would be much more positive. Why is that? Because, in that case, the real goal would be self-improvement. Focusing motivation on effort means the individual becomes more confident in themselves. It’s okay if the person doesn’t reach their goal, because they’d get a very important and essential thing anyway, which is self-value.

This teaches us that even though reaching our goals is important, there are other significant lessons and experiences to consider: perseverance, teamwork, constant effort to be better, and hard work. By following this approach, even if we don’t end up achieving our goal, we won’t think the journey was a waste of time – quite the opposite, we’ll definitely think it was worthwhile. 

“Pleasure and action make the hours seem short.”

-William Shakespeare-

Man jumping from one mountain to the other.

Managing motivation

Nowadays, observation is important to find the motivational orientation of a person. Once we know what their goals are, they can be reinforced or reoriented if it increases the value of what’s been achieved with a similar effort. We could compare this situation to a soccer match or a match of any other sport you like. What’s better: focusing only on the result or focusing on the execution to reach the goal? 

If someone only focuses on the result, the person might think any method or process is valid in order to achieve it. They might choose the correct method, but what if they don’t?

On the other hand, if we focus on how we could reach our goal, we probably will. This is because experience comes with a learning process we go through when we want to reach our objectives. The experience will teach us lessons we’ll never forget and we’ll feel so much more complete and satisfied. 

Now, what do you think? Do you think it’s useful to have a balanced motivation? It seems vital when it comes to learning since it’s much more attractive, especially to kids and teens.