Motives that Lead to Success

August 29, 2014 | 12 comments

Here’s an interesting article I read in the New York Times about motives, “The Secret of Effective Motivation,” by Amy Wrzesniewski and Barry Schwartz. The authors point out that people who work for internal reasons that have meaning to them, will be more successful in the long run.

They describe two kinds of motives: internal and instrumental. Internal motives are ones that have meaning, like a teacher’s desire to teach because they love to teach. Instrumental motives seek outward gain, like a bigger paycheck or fame.

Parents, teachers, recruiters, employers often resort to instrumental motives to get people to do what they want them to do, for instance, the employer offering a bonus check for higher performance on the job, or a parent promising a new toy to a child who does their chores. Instrumental motives may produce short term results, but in the long run, the material gain is not enough to hold the person’s interest. They need more. They need internal reasons to keep up their good work.

The authors wrote, “Helping people focus on the meaning and impact of their work, rather than on, say, the financial returns it will bring, may be the best way to improve not only the quality of their work but also — counterintuitive though it may seem — their financial success.”

As I studied the article I thought of reasons some people take up the study of Christian Science. Often, new students are seeking physical healing. And they may gain the healing they seek. But in the long run, if the only reason they stay in Science is for more physical healing or material gain—instrumental consequences—they are likely to lose interest, or not be successful. There needs to be an internal reason for studying the truth, a genuine desire to want to know and understand the truth of being above all else. Those who have internal motives are more likely to stick with it forever because the reward is great, they know it and they have it, and are very happy about it.

12 thoughts on “Motives that Lead to Success”

  1. Food for thought. Why is that one person will pick up S&H for the first time. Get nothing from it and give it awsy as useless dry metaphysics. While another will open S&H and words jump up of its pages and they can’t put the book down.
    A friend brought another friend to Sunday Christian Science Service. The friends response to the Service was that he had never been to a more boring Mass. While another finds healing and never leaves?
    Might it be in Mrs Eddy’s own words “The time for thinkers has come”. Could it be that not everyone was receptive to Christian Science?

    1. Christian Science is metaphysical. It requires active spiritual sense to engage and understand it. If one is trying to understand it through material sense, it will appear dry and boring. Nothing there. But to spiritual sense, everything is there!!

  2. Thanks Evan for sharing. What a great foundation to check the real motive underlying our interest and purpose on every endeavor.

  3. The greatest need to understand and demonstrate C/S is RECEPTIVITY , for without this C/S is only seen as another one of those meaningless religious nonsense that’s going around.

  4. I’m in it for the long haul, but I frankly don’t get a lot of it. I really struggle with the thought if C.S. is right why did God make it so difficult? I don’t think it is believable
    in many circumstances. I never read in the Bible about Jesus telling the multitudes what they had to do to be healed. It is to bad he didn’t tell more about how they were to heal others.

    1. Take heart, you are not alone. I think more folks would agree but they don’t dare say how much they just don’t understand for fear of disapproval on the part of those who have it nailed down (or seem to).

  5. Oh Evan, the last sentence is so True. The REWARDs are Great. It is my happiest task to share with those who are in need of healing or just want to know more or “Something” about Christian Science. My daily prayer is for all the world to find this Truth, and enjoy the rewards along with us. One day, this will be true and the whole world will sigh a colletive, thank you Father and a collective AMEN!! thanks for All you are doing to share the “Rewards are Great” information with our brothers and sisters around the entire world….One Family, the Family of God’s children, and that Includes YOU ALL!!!! There IS Good going on in this world!! Loving thoughts, caydee kittredge

  6. experiencing a healing filled with God’s love, or actually feeling God’s love 1st, then the physical healing takes place the next day…… the safety, security, fullness of that love does not leave one easily & one strives to remember it whenever a separateness from God might want to eek in.

  7. Oh so true, Deb….once divine Love is felt in uplifted thought (and thus body…one could say “body-of-thought,” for isn’t this all that the body is?), nothing else will ever satisfy again. We all have “immortal cravings,” as Mary Baker Eddy calls our innate yearning for something more than mere material life,” of which, she explains, is no more existent than “a flat earth.” It is, after all, a matter of perspective. As rainbows are actually round, seen from a distance out into space, but appear as bows from an earthly view, even so we are immortal, The senses do not have the right perspective to see this fact, and must, therefore, be … risen above. This takes work, yes, but it is work we all must do. Truth has given us the necessary patience and wisdom to overcome the senses’ false reports…. Life has given us eternity to demonstrate it. And gratefully we get glimpses of the facts, along the way….

    Yes, the road seems long, to me, at times, but wisdom bids me keep on the Path.
    Spiritual intuition tells me it is the right One….

  8. In answer to Patty ..the swinish element in human nature rejects the Christ Truth! Jesus knew “not to cast pearls before swine”. Thought must be humbly prepared before it can understand one grain of Truth. This is why Jesus spoke in parables. Learning these ideas of Love shouldn’t be simple for it prepares us for knowing and understanding more of those Truths. Making it easy would not allow us to show meekness and humility which God requires of us, so

    we can learn more. We can spend an eternity learning of God and loving Him there truly is no greater gift to him than showing Love and being that Love!

  9. Thank you so much Evan for sharing “The Secret of Effective Motivation.” It is one of the qualities I need to firmly understand and develop. It will help me much. Although I’ve already started through Mind’s revelations and with great improvements but this explains so well a so-called slow healing. I mean it is one of those reasons that I needed to understand.

  10. Hi
    I began my journey because I couldn’t believe that what I was handed as life was life. It made no sense- born into the blissful state of infant hood, childhood, and then rudely awakened to this world of fear was too cruel to be called a life. I am trying to awake now and not work toward something that is already here.

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