Motivation

Motivation to do something has been a determining factor in much that I do. When there’s something to be done, usually some kind of work and/or something I don’t prefer doing, I like to know why it needs to be done.

Is this really necessary? Can it wait until later, or does it have to/should it be done now? Does accomplishing such a task or activity have any effect on me? Do I need to do this? Will I benefit from doing whatever task or activity that’s being asked of me, and/or needs to/should be done?

When it comes to doing things, especially things that I don’t want to do, I consider questions like this prior to taking any action. This has been the case for me for quite a long time. Honestly, it makes sense to take such things into account before acting on them. This is why I still procrastinate a lot.

I’m unsure as to whether this is an Aspie trait, or just simply a few ways that I reason things. Knowing that Aspies have very logical minds, it would makes sense for other Aspies to be of like mind with me. At the same time, considering other people in your decision making is important when something affects more than just you. I suppose what I’m saying is that even though it’s good to look out for your own interests, you still need to consider the wants and needs of others.

For one thing, when you do something good for someone else, regardless of whether they asked you to or not, they might then be inclined to do something for you in return at a later time. Don’t always expect this to be the case, as doing a favor for others, while usually nice, doesn’t mean they are obligated to then do something for you. Do good things because they’re good things to do, not (just) for the sake of expecting something from someone else.

Where I used to only do things largely for my own sake, I’ve learned that the world doesn’t revolve around me. At times, it’s good to step out of my comfort zone to do stuff just as much for the benefit of others than for myself. I like being on good terms with people and helping them when I can.

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3 thoughts on “Motivation

  1. Motivation is probably the best word to use in this discussion. In the past when I lived independently on my own, I used to say that I was a very “moody” person in the sense that, although I had large amounts of spare time, I didn’t read as many books as I potentially could read because for me, although that is a pleasurable activity, I do find I have to be in the right mood to want to do that. I would just as often fill up my spare time on weekends “marathoning” an Anime series, or listening to podcasts while doing chores like folding and putting away laundry, or spending hours watching funny, entertaining videos on YouTube, etc. I had enormous fun uploading and editing my own videos for YouTube circa 2008-2009, especially when Xtranormal.com was a totally free animation creation site, and when I was digitizing hours of home movies on VHS tape into data DVDs thanks to a local recording studio in Denton, Texas, then selectively editing these into smaller chunks of data and making discrete, short and therefore more “watchable” videos for YouTube. I used to have a much more active reading life when I was younger. My bookshelf used to be filled with the evidence of intellectual paths considered then later abandoned, like distinct layers in an exposed geological formation. My parents have long criticized my book buying habits as “wasteful”, but I find their comments cruel and unkind. I suppose I once had the vanity of wanting to collect an immense personal library, but real life and having to move from job to job to job kept getting in the way of that beautiful dream. I’ve had to pare down my collection because of mundane considerations of space, money, shipping costs, etc, not because I really wanted to part with ANY of my books per se. I also had to part with some rare books and CDs and other media when I walked out on my marriage and never looked back. I do still like to read, but having to work 40 hours a week, even in my current job, and also maintain a modicum of social contact with my immediate family, which I view as a duty and also as a necessity to ensure domestic tranquility and to avoid conflict that I deplore….I find that because of all that sometimes it’s all I can do just to squeeze in some light reading like a Japanese manga here or there. I also prefer to watch Anime on DVD than any network or cable TV shows. I may watch local sports teams with my parents but I always have a manga in hand to flip through during time-outs or commercial breaks and I always go upstairs to futz around on the computer at half-time. I find I do probably read MORE when I live alone and independently, but I think I surprise myself that I don’t read that MUCH more than I do otherwise. I think when I was younger and more idealistic, I believed more fervently in the power of books to change the world and change lives, that I felt I had a duty to continue to cultivate my own intellect beyond my college and grad school degree programs…I still enjoy listening to non-fiction “books on tape” and look forward to getting a new car with a CD player so I can get back to next enjoying “books on CD”, especially of the nonfiction variety. I crave intellectual stimulation in that way even still. But I suppose my passions have cooled somewhat since my 20s and early 30s…and I’ve also grown a bit more cynical and jaded. I no longer really have emotionally close friendships and/or interesting circles of people to talk to and debate with anymore in a casual social setting the way I did in college and my grad school years. All attempts to keep that kind of intellectual social life going since those times yielded modest results and all have failed eventually. I’m still a news and current events political junkie at times, but I’m less engaged in the policy wonk stuff because I feel that’s a younger man’s game and just not the sort of stuff I feel all that motivated to duke it out on anymore. I’m incredibly pessimistic about my ability to persuade anyone of anything at times. I’d just rather shut up and watch from the sidelines.

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