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How to Increase Motivation in Your Clients

I'm reading a book all about the myth of talent and the power of practice. It highlights some insightful strategies for effective motivation.

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One of the points that it raised that I am a firm subscriber to, is the importance of internal motivation for the practice. It was the athletes that internalised their motivation from an early age that succeeded in committing to the thousands of hours practice required to achieve mastery of the skill.

What I also found interesting and worthy of sharing was the most effective methods of coaches to enhance motivation and subsequent performance of their athletes by rewarding effort and not talent.

How often have you heard, or perhaps said, that person is gifted or talented, or a natural? (and this 'natural' often become this way after many hours of purposeful practice) When really what must instead be recognize is the discipline in application that the individual cultivated, that allowed them to reach a level of mastery of the skill, something that mere talent alone can never achieve.

Tenacity will trump talent any day of the week.

The damaging thing to people who think that only talented, smart and lucky people succeed, reinforces what is called a "fixed mindset", which reduces the chances of that individual from achieving anything. Holding a fixed mindset actually contributes to their diminishing success over time.

Whereas a growth mindset, which states the belief that a person can enhance their skills and aptitude with concentrated effort over time is linked to significantly greater results over time.

Those with a fixed mindset saw mistakes and failure as a personal affliction blaming their ineptitude and inability whereas those with a growth mindset didn't blame anything, they saw their mistakes as an opportunity to learn.

Very interesting.

Mindset is everything.

What I learned was the effect that being praised on "how smart I was" as a kid impacted on my self-esteem, severely undermining it.

I won a statewide maths competition at the age of 9yrs old, winning the Pythagoras medal after receiving a perfect score 40 out of 40. I was in the papers and praised and recognised not for the work that I put in to achieve that result, but how smart I was, I was earmarked for the district gifted and talented program and reinforced that I was "smart".

In the book it highlights through research and studies the links to this praise and diminishing results for those praised on their intellect and talent rather than effort.

And I was able to draw parallels to my own diminishing results in academia to good but no longer great and felt inept, not good enough, like a failure because I couldn't live up to the expectation of my talent or smarts.

Maybe you have had a similar experience?

This was continued in my sporting career: one example was something my coach said about me behind my back that I found out about as a 19yr old "I don't know what happened to her, she used to be so talented" it wasn't long after that that my coach literally gave up on me, devastating for an athlete; as it was for me at the time.

One thing I know that is essential to a successful coach client/athlete relationship (this one is a great learning for the coaches out there) is that the coach must believe 110% in the client/athlete and the client/athlete must trust the guidance of the coach 110%.

This is how the most successful coach/client relationships are established belief and trust.

So, how do you enhance the motivation and belief in your clients as opposed to undermining it?

Praise the effort, reward learning from their mistakes and shoot for continuous never-ending improvement of their knowledge and skills.

Encourage their growth mindset and watch as their motivation and progress soar.

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Posted in Computer Post Date 07/18/2021


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