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Scaling Your Mountain: Adjusting Your Goals for Intrinsic Motivation

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Intrinsic motivation derived from your innermost self is sustainable when you reasonably adjust to your goals to make sure you achieve them, let’s see how you can do that…

Have you ever set a grand vision or a "big goal" for yourself, only to find your motivation fizzling out before you even start working towards it?

This common issue often stems from the feeling that the goal is too daunting or simply out of reach.

The Size of Your Mountain

Picture it like this…

Imagine you're standing at the base of a mountain…

Your goal is to reach the top where you will witness a breathtaking view…

Initially, you feel a surge of excitement and determination. 

You’re deeply motivated to start climbing. 


As you gaze up at the steep, rugged paths, your enthusiasm suddenly goes down. 

You lost all motivation.

This happens because no matter how big or appealing your “big goal” is… if the task you have in front of you is too difficult then you won’t do it.


People are born with intrinsic motivation, self-esteem, dignity, curiosity to learn, joy in learning. -W. Edwards Deming

The Size of You

To maintain your motivation throughout this daunting task, you need to make some adjustments:

1 - Enhance the Reward

  • If you knew that at the top of the mountain was a chest containing a million dollars, that would make the climb more appealing. 
  • This significant reward can help justify the effort required and keep your eyes on the prize, especially during tough moments.

2 - Reduce the Difficulty

  • If the climb still feels too challenging even after enhancing the reward, then consider mapping a less steep path or breaking the journey into smaller segments. 
  • Each smaller goal achieved, like reaching a halfway point where you can rest and take in a beautiful view, serves as a motivation booster, making the ultimate goal seem more attainable.

The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential... these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence. -Confucius

Just like adjusting your approach to climbing the mountain, you can apply these principles to any significant goal in your life…

For example, if you're aiming to start a business, attach highly appealing rewards to the tasks you need to get done to jumpstart your motivation and get you going.

Or if the tasks are too difficult, then break down the process of starting your business into smaller, more manageable steps, like only completing a business plan…

And don’t forget to celebrate each of these milestones to keep your motivation high.


Setting a big vision is like planning to climb a mountain with a treasure at the top – it’s inspiring but it can be really overwhelming.

By either enhancing the rewards to make the effort seem more worthwhile or reducing the difficulty to make your goal more approachable, you can keep your intrinsic motivation alive.

Only intrinsic motivation lasts in the long run. -Nick Wignall

Conclusion: Why Intrinsic Motivation is Necessary

Your outer situation is a reflection of your inner universe, and you can only pour out to the world what is in your cup.

When your cup is filled with habits and behaviors that are counterproductive to the results you desire, the outcome of your efforts will reflect that so you might end up settling for a life you never really wanted.

By finding ways to do what is important to you, you’re nurturing your motivating factors and increasing your chances of success as you’re willing to grow beyond the limitations you believe to be there.

Everyone faces mountains, some start the climb and give up mid-way, and others don’t even look at the mountain...

But when you surrender to your innermost drive - truly know that what you’re looking forward to is worth your while - and adjust your pace - make the journey manageable - then the character you build by growing beyond your perception of the size of the mountain becomes your sustainable intrinsic motivation.

The mountains don’t get smaller, you simply grow bigger.

Make Your Voice Heard

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Frequently Asked Questions About Intrinsic Motivation

Has your Mind ever wondered… 

How to use intrinsic motivation?

Understand who you are in relation to your mountain and start taking action rather than waiting for a big sign or some condition to be optimal before taking a step in your desired direction.

Consider the internal rewards you’ll receive by moving forward - this could be anything from how many lives you’ll positively impact to the depth of your personal satisfaction and delight for reaching your goal.

Make sure to have a structured pathway to achieve your goals and break each task down into smaller bits so you can be sure to reach your objective.

It is vital to acknowledge and celebrate every bit of progress you make as your journey is not separate from your goals, steps, tasks, or the outcome you’re aiming for.

It’s all one thing, and YOU are the one holding it all together.

If things don’t go as planned, channel the experience into meaningful lessons for further growth because mistakes are part of your journey to success and they are invaluable.

What are the six intrinsic motivators?

Are you driven toward experiencing freedom and autonomy?

Do you have a desire to fulfill your purpose or sharpen your competence?

Are you excited about exploring your curiosities while having fun and being challenged?

Do you yearn for a sense of belonging?

Then you're intrinsically motivated and your goals as well as the rewards attached to them can fuel your willingness to sustain your efforts.  

How to Develop Intrinsic Motivation?

Loving what you do is key, so challenge yourself by setting reasonable and achievable goals and finding meaning in your endeavor.

Focus on the value that your unique contribution to the world, brings to others because the greatest reward to receive is in living a life of purpose.

Readers' Reviews

Rated 4.7 out of 5
4.7 out of 5 stars (based on 14 reviews)
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Avatar for Antonio

Vivir la vida con propósito [Translated from Spanish: Live life with purpose]

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Cada paso dado debe celebrarse

[Translated from Spanish: Every step taken must be celebrated]

Avatar for Nguessan

J'ai vraiment aimé l'article [Translated from French: I really liked the article]

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Article très intéressant et motivant. Les méthodes décrite sont super pratiques

[Translated from French: Very interesting and motivating article. The methods described are super practical]

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Maria da Luz pereira

Curso [Translated from Spanish: Course]

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Estoy encantada Este artículo llega en el momento justo de mi vida. Es más que un artículo, es una guía que le ayuda a mantenerse en el camino hacia el éxito.

[Translated from Spanish: I am delighted. This article comes at the right time in my life. It's more than an article, it's a guide to help you stay on the path to success.]

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The Ultimate Guide to Success

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This article comes at the right time in my life. It's more than an article, it's a guide that helps you stay on the path to success.

Avatar for Manuel

El día soñado llegara [Translated from Spanish: The dreamed day will arrive]

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Hacía el éxito...

[Translated from Spanish: Towards success...]

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Syed Hassan

Excellent Way

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A really excellent way to teach being self motivated. Fabulous.

Avatar for Saddan Jose Peña mercedes
Saddan Jose Peña mercedes

Mui bueno [Translated from Spanish: Very good]

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Exelente motivación, y replicasion para todas aquellas personas cómo yo que quiere emprender y mirar lo positivo el proceso saber jestionar el camino sin darnos por vendido.

[Translated from Spanish: Excellent motivation, and replication for all those people like me who want to undertake and look at the positive in the process and know how to manage the path without giving up.]

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Rocío Corona

Dan la mano los que van adelante [Translated from Spanish: Those who go ahead shake hands]

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Todo suma, se agradece leer artículos motivadores y que aportan herramientas para lograr objetivos.

[Translated from Spanish: It all adds up, it is appreciated to read motivating articles that provide tools to achieve goals.]

Avatar for Epifanios


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One day a proud young man approached Socrates and asked him to show him the path to wisdom (motivation). He locked eyes with the young man and told him, “meet me at the river at dawn” before walking away.

The next morning the young man arrived at the river before dawn. Socrates soon walked down the path and slowly waded into the water, motioning for the man to join him. When the young man waded up to his chest Socrates looked at him and asked, “what do you want?” The young man responded, “to find wisdom!”

Socrates grabbed the man and began drowning him. He held him under water for twenty seconds and then let him up, asking him again, “what do you want?” The young man responded again, “to find wisdom!” At that, Socrates promptly submerged the man under water again. Thirty seconds passed, then forty, and the man’s face began to turn blue. Socrates lifted the man up and asked, “what do you want?” The man gasped, “air!”

Socrates released the young man, and said “when you want wisdom as much as you have just wanted air, then you will begin to find wisdom.”

This is the way we have to WANT something.

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extraordinaria moraleja de la Montana [Translated from Spanish: extraordinary moral of the Montana]

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verme en la cima, en mi vision

[Translated from Spanish: see me at the top, in my vision]

Avatar for Vir

Extraordinaria Información [Translated from Spanish: Extraordinary Information]

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"Amar lo que haces es clave, Concéntrate en el valor que su contribución única al mundo aporta a los demás porque la mayor recompensa que puede recibir es vivir una vida con propósito" , Uff, me ha encantado todo lo que he leído, esta frase me ha resonado mucho, que difícil se nos hace ponernos metas, que triste que no nos enseñen en las escuelas todo esto, me encantan este tipo de recomendaciones que te hacen pensar y descubrir que cosas tenemos que mejorar para conseguir nuestros sueños. Muchas gracias !!!

[Translated from Spanish: "Loving what you do is key, Focus on the value that your unique contribution to the world brings to others because the greatest reward you can receive is living a life of purpose", Ugh, I loved everything I have read, this phrase It has resonated with me a lot, how difficult it is for us to set goals, how sad that they don't teach us all this in schools, I love these types of recommendations that make you think and discover what things we have to improve to achieve our dreams. Thank you so much ]

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Peter Kimweri

Inner core motivation

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There's no easy way to reach on top of your vision. It's a journey with determination and beliefs to get to the fruits of reaching on top. Breaking down this journey into smaller and achievable missions is the key to success. And every step taken is worth to be celebrated.

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Motivating Article

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The article highly motivating for people particularly those who are living without any purpose

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Love this post :-)

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Really clear and motivating

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