This is the foreword to my book ‘Deep Motivation’ that you can find on Amazon.
A conceptual not-knowing
As a matter of fact, motivation stands prior to any human action. Yet in academia, where leaders are taught how to motivate their people, there is an acknowledged ignorance. The leaders themselves also frequently don’t know how to start. The easy way out is to blame the followers in not following unless being either payed or coerced. But that is not the path of leadership, and what is being done here is not motivation.
In leadership, ‘authenticity’ is pointed out as probably central to what is happening, if something happens. That may be true, but what is ‘authenticity’? One may try to conceptualize it but if one then takes the pure conceptualization, it doesn’t work anymore. Authenticity then becomes artificial, even phony, and certainly not motivational.
There have been many theories about motivation, one after the other, ending in the new one debunking the prior ones. So, we know much of what doesn’t work. Still, there is no stable conceptual theory about what does work in motivation. Perhaps the problem eventually lies in the conceptuality itself of the theories. Thus, actually, no such theory will ever do, in principle. It can take a very long time to reach this insight. Indeed, that is already the case.
Core of deep motivation
‘Deep’ means in this case that we go beyond conceptualization. We try to understand motivation from a subconceptual angle. Here we encounter it as an art. We can learn to grasp its different faces. Then we can put these together and try to grasp them as a whole. We get many handles towards that in this Read&Do. This way, we can start conceptualizing from the bottom up. Even more, we can start making it useable. Insights and actions. One can read and do.
The ‘deep’ in deep motivation goes very deep indeed. If one follows the trail, one gets lost in a fog. What eventually motivates in any usual sense cannot be grasped. What remains visible before entering the fog can be called an end value. Terms may deceive. End values are like clouds. They are so many ways to approach a total person in totality.
A cloud is not moved by a bullet.
Such would be an attempt to motivate someone – including oneself – purely on the conceptual level. In reality, motivation can only be deep. All motivation is ‘deep motivation.’ For this, one needs the ability to overlap and have a ‘deep to deep communication.’ One can see this as a happening whereby the motivator and the motivated person move together. They both act as clouds.
Nevertheless, the bullet is used frequently. People keep on misreading the cloud. This way, much human misery comes from demotivation that is brought with the intention to motivate. From childhood to old age, many people get little genuine motivation. No wonder they are prone to burn out. No wonder they achieve little of their full human potential, even from the first years at school or before.
Motivation is coaching
Thus, motivation and AURELIS coaching have the same goal: to move together as one and in the direction that the coachee (person to be motivated) deeply wants. The higher goal is to find this goal of the coachee and align it – without changing it – to a goal of the environment in which the coachee wants to play some role. This role is part of the broader goal of the coachee. There may be some change involved in the environment itself. This too should be achieved in alignment.
Motivation is coaching. Coaching is motivation. AURELIS coaching is applicable in many situations. One’s whole way of communication may be a kind of coaching. That corresponds with natural coaching also always being motivational.