Just Curious

Hey, Siestas! I have a question rolling around in my mind and I’d love to throw it to my favorite community. Here goes:

What motivates you most effectively?

That’s it. Pure and simple.

Ground rules:
*You can only name one kind of motivation. Think of the one that tends to work on you more often than the others.

*You are asked to name your real, live most effective motivator and not the one you wish you had. (You may honestly respond best to a healthy motivator and, if so, say so! But, if the truth is, you are more often effectively motivated by something negative, please also say so.)

This hint might be of help to some of you as you roll the question around in your sweet head: Think back on times of substantial and lasting change in your life. What motivated the real change? (Of course, we all know that, ultimately, the Holy Spirit brings about transformation, but what did He use???)

You bless me to no end. Watching for your responses!


1,127 Responses to “Just Curious”

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  1. 801
    Susan D says:

    Some type of reward usually motivates me.It can be praise/affirmation, a good feeling( as with exercise),or the knowledge of pleasing someone else.

  2. 802
    Maria says:

    I’ll probably be thinking about this topic for years. On a regular fleshly basis, I want recognition or acknowledgment for the “things” I do.

    On a spiritual level I am often amazed at how the Holy Spirit guides me. Throughout my life I look back in awe at how He has guided me and given me the will to change. The motivation he gives me is a desire and belief that everything in life can be better than it is: me, the way I handle things, my point of view, my attitude, what I eat, how I treat others, etc. There’s always room for improvement.

  3. 803
    Leanne Dunaway says:

    What can I say but that you have changed my life. I am 48 and have gone to church all my life….I recently attended your Here & Now series! I now am not afraid of the end of days, or what is happend during them. I feel alive when I go to bible study. I raise 2 of my grandchildren one 6 and one 8, they cant wait till mawmaw gets home to tell then what Ms. Beth talked about tonight. We watch you every time you are on TV. Thank you Beth for all the inspiration you have given me.

    Love, Leanne

  4. 804
    Patsy says:

    Accomplishing something motivates me to no end. Sounds great except when you’re somewhat of a perfectionist who also struggles with fear of failure. Keeps you from stepping out of your box often.

  5. 805
    Leslie says:

    I am a total praise junky. Let someone give me a good word or tell me I have encouraged them or done a great job on a task, and I will fall over myself to repeat that behavior. Come to think of it, that maybe why I love my furry canine friends…pat me on the head and tell me I am a good girl and I’ll be your friend forever. (Just need to make good choices on the Master I listen too!!!)

  6. 806
    Katherine Lee says:

    I’ve thought this through and in a lot of areas, results are obviously motivating, but I’ve been giving myself more and more fully to a life of ministy–of intentional ministry. In that, there are not always visible results.
    For a lot of motivation in probably 90% of my life, PRAYER and GOD’S WORD/ listening to Him is what gets it done.
    Before I started following Christ a few years ago, the few peopl who held on, who loved me through, who promised they’d never leave and then didn’t….that’s what “motivated” me to wake up each day. But I look at each one of them, and they are all fervent prayers and dedicated to God’s word.
    At times, different things motivate me, a compliment, a smile, encouragement, put downs, just simply knowing something is almost over. But when it comes to the root of things, the bulk of things–what gets me going, fired up, or simply gives me the strength to hold on, especially when all that other stuff doesn’t work–thats the promises God gave us in the Bible.
    Especially JOHN 16:33.
    He HAS overcome the world!

  7. 807
    Crystal says:

    He humbles me – usually the Lord uses a humiliating situation to show the sin in me. He gets my attention when I am face-to-face with the problem. Otherwise, I can rationalize my way out it. He teaches me when he shows me how much I really need Him and how things are NOT working when I do it my way. Sorry to admit…but it is true. I can then see truth when it is so evident and in my face!

    He is also kind…he doesn’t do it in front of a million people, just enough to get my attention. I love Him so!!

  8. 808
    Valerie says:

    As best as I can figure-

    Used to be fear and pain.
    Then it was food.
    Then it was looking forward to a satisfying feeling of accomplishment.
    Then it was for cultivating the appreciation of others.
    Now it is a mix of the recognition of absoulute necessity (recognizing there is no other real choice) and inspiration! of Holy Spirit (needing no reason).

    Good question!

  9. 809
    Cynthia Petersen says:

    Praise and worship~ I daily put it on at home and when I worship the Lord it motivates me in all area’s of my life. Health, Spiritual, work, home, family, prayer, problems.
    God is with me in it and praise showers me in His presence.
    I love it. I want more of it.

    love,Cynthia Petersen

  10. 810
    Miquela Hales says:

    Rewards & words of affirmation after finishing

  11. 811
    Nichole H says:

    If I’m honest I’d have to say the biggest motivator for me has been pain. Physical pain. Emotional pain. Mental pain. You name it. Pain. And once I experience relief whether it’s in the form of healing or just not doing whatever it was that caused that pain to begin with, it’s a HUGE motivator. For so many years I had gotten used to being in pain all the time so I didn’t know any better. Then God gave me a glimpse of what it might be like without it…and I was driven to pursue whatever he was asking me to do to be FREE.

  12. 812
    Judy says:

    Pre-salvation: a desire to make a difference, no matter what the cost may have been on my body or to my family’s welfare.

    Now: while it’s still the same desire there is one HUGE difference–that whatever I do, wherever my attention is focused, it needs to be in complete alignment with God’s will and lead by the Holy Spirit. I have learned over and over again that when I try to walk by my strength, that I end up stressed and a puddle of pooh at best. BUT, when I know that I’m walking in His light and by His strength, then I am confident that what I’m doing will make a difference.

  13. 813
    Dayna says:

    God blessed me (in hindsight) by putting someone in my life who challenged me, through some very uncomfortable confrontations, to be more and to do better than I had been up to that point. The more offended I get, the harder I work to prove I can do something. It certainly wasn’t always the case, but I love that person deeply now.

    Conflict/challenge (sometimes negative, sometimes positive) with someone who will hold me accountable is my friction that makes me move. I’m not sure which one word it would be, but perhaps “friction” says it best.

  14. 814
    Heledd says:

    Have been mulling this over today.

    If I’m being honest I guess, like a lot of people on this blog, it’s fear – probably fear of failing.

  15. 815
    Danielle says:

    Need. If I see someone in need, or something that needs doing, I cannot sit until I know that it is being taken care of. This used to be a problem, because I was saying “yes” every time someone asked me to do something. Now I understand both the power of delegation, and the power of God to move. If I can’t do it myself (or the Lord tells me it’s not for me to do), and I cannot locate someone who feels it appropriate and right to do it, I pray that God will unleash His resources to work mightily in that situation, or in that person. Only then can I walk away knowing it is handled. Surely my Loving Father would be any less moved toward someone than I would. In His hands, I know that the BEST can come of it, even when this control-freak has a hard time letting go.

  16. 816
    Laura Schaefer says:

    The desire to hear “Well done, good & faithful servant” when I meet my Saviour face to face!

  17. 817

    God’s Word motivates me and has brought real and lasting change (peace) to my life, specifically Philippians 3:10a from the Amplified Bible has become my daily prayer…โ€œMy determined purpose is that I may know Him, that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His person more strongly and more clearly.โ€ I am motivated by progressively becoming more deeply and intimately acquainted with my Lord through a difficult season of change in my life. God met me at the point of my need, answering my prayer through giving me a heart to set my alarm for 5 a.m. each morning so that I would have quiet time with Him and His word each morning before I faced the day. Each morning I awake and before my feet hit the floor, I begin asking Him to speak to me through His word. After putting on a pot of coffee, and settling down at my kitchen table, I open His word, and listen for His still small voice to minister to me. I have journaled these changes over the years, and how a specific Scripture would be just what I would need for that day, that moment in time…very motivating ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. 818
    Vickie says:

    People who are authentic, sincere and knowledgable are what motivates me. A list of many in my life who have been a motivational inspiration are Beth Moore (Praise God for you as your authenticity is so refreshing and inspiring!), Charles Stanley, Ed Young and christian radio. Nate motivates me to decorate.
    Trish McEvoy motivates me to wear good makeup. My daughter Amanda motivates me to choose quality clothing from Nordstrom. I could go on and on.

    I am grateful ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. 819

    Pain. Sickeningly, that’s the truth. Emotional pain, not physical pain. At least not any I’ve experienced. I promise you being in labor did not motivate me to be very nice ๐Ÿ™‚ Of course, that ends after a few hours. Who knows what I would do if I was in pain for a longer period of time!

  20. 820
    KiKi says:

    The biggest motivator for me when making big decisions/changes…Not wanting to deal with the consequences of choosing my own way (disobedience) instead of the Lord’s way. Although other people may not approve..circumstances may not make sense…I’d rather deal with those things in obedience than suffer with sin consequences!

  21. 821
    Connie says:

    What motivates me is finding opportunities to serve others, that when I am done doing them, I am so exhausted and yet can’t wait until the next time. I volunteer on a mobile food pantry team, it is how I knew to step out of my comfort zone when asked to help run a church based food pantry. Finding something you love to do is the greatest motivator.

  22. 822
    Susan says:

    I hate to say it but having someone praise me will get me to do most anything.

  23. 823
    erin says:

    effectiveness, i’d guess … or change, actually, desire to change. if what i am a part of or something i need to do can instil a desire to change in either myself or others, i feel truly fufilled and effective … a useful tool.

  24. 824
    Molly says:

    Love. Love motivates me to care for my young children, help my husband, run our household, do bible study studies,etc. Love for my family and my God.

  25. 825
    Jonna Decker says:

    Sad to say,but a promise from God motivates me to do what ever it is He asks. Why can’t I just want to do it without a reward. His presence should be enough but it is not, sad to say but the truth.

  26. 826
    Tess says:

    Oh, I love this question!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ I could go in so many different directions but I’ll limit myself…For me, my biggest motivator is “accountability”. Specifically a person to spur me on. My best motivator is my mentor/friend Andrea who together we spur one another on to memorize scripture on the SSMT! The accountability is huge and the change scripture memorizing has had on me is phenomenal!! Glory to God! I’ve also had accountability with girlfriends to text one another in the am to keep us accountable to our morning quiet times! It was hugely motivating to have friends in on it with me!

  27. 827
    Lisa says:

    a deadline… simply… a quantifiable deadline

  28. 828
    Katie says:

    Avoiding avoidable emotional pain motivates me. Some emotional pain is not avoidable but when it is avoidable I am motivated to avoid it. Know what I mean?

  29. 829
    Kim Bradshaw says:

    Knowing company is on the way is what motivates me to have a clean house. Knowing Jesus is on the way is what motivates me to have a clean me!

  30. 830
    Stacy Burright says:

    What motivates me is my children and my husband.

  31. 831
    Pat from Kansas says:


  32. 832
    Faith says:

    The end result.

    Finding out whether or not I can do something or how well I can do something. That motivates me.

  33. 833
    Andrea says:

    I hate to admit this….PAIN motivates me. I was the most apathetic Christian alive until God allowed pain, desperation, and suffering to come into my life. He used it to push me to pursue Him more passionately!

  34. 834
    Amanda says:

    Words motivate me! Words of encouragement, of course! But also, words of criticism make me want to do better. I am such a people pleaser,and I do not want to let anyone down, so a little constructive criticism goes a long way to motivate me. I know this is VERY flawed thinking, and I try to only please my Savior, but alot of times, I find myself people pleasing again! You said be honest!

  35. 835
    Cheryl says:

    Deadlines. For some reason I usually work best with a gun to my head (figuratively speaking, of course).

  36. 836
    Sarah from Wyoming says:

    My dreams. I have always been a dreamer and a big picture thinker. I love to think about 10-20 years down the road. I have learned over the years to allow my dreams to change and evolve during different seasons and sometimes I outgrow them but I love being a dreamer. I also have learned that if I seek Him first in all I do then I can rest assured that my dreams are desires He planted in my heart for a reason.

  37. 837
    Nikki says:

    It was hard for me to pick just one. After much soul searching, I realized something about motivating myself that I will never forget. Thank you for that:)

    However, if what you are looking for is deep and lasting change (that is necessary), I would have to say suffering has been my best teacher…yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. Hebrews 5:8

  38. 838
    Carolyn says:

    The thing that motivates me the most is appreciation. I like to know that what I do or who I am is of value to someone. It can be at home, with friends, at work, at church, etc. None of it matters if I don’t think I’m valued. That is one of the things I love about you Beth. You constantly tell us how God loves us and can’t take his eyes off us. How amazing is that. Wow!

  39. 839
    Candace says:


  40. 840
    renesandifer says:

    hmmmm, thinking down the line to get to the root…and I think motivation (at this time in my life) is birthed out of being able to praise God wheter I am happy or sad. Singing and actively engaging my whole being, hands lifted high or face to the floor. Especially when singing about His attributes, or straight-from-scripture songs. No matter if alone at home, or in coporate worship it puts my perscective right and focuses on HIM…and HE always motivates me.

    • 840.1
      rene says:

      ok probably over thinking this. but after 2 hrs of pondering further, I think at the heart of this is the need for encouragement. And since that is so rare these days, it pushes me to the Father, where my ultimate encouragement must come, anyway. But I would also be motivated by authentic Godly people speaking encouragement into my life.

  41. 841
    Tamara says:

    Approval of people who are important to me. People pleasing.
    Not always the greatest reasons to do things – but that’s it.

  42. 842
    Lisa Saunders says:

    Yes my motivator is the Holy Spirit. Now what He uses I think is myrelationship with Jesus. After participating in the Experiencing God Bible study I now know that all these years that voice in my head has been the Holy Spirit. The closer I am in my walk with Jesus the better I can hear and act on the recommendations. Sometimes my human nature can and does interrupt the conversation and I don’t get it right. But the more I focus on God the less time I have to misinterpret His motivation. Thanks for making me think.lisa

  43. 843
    Kim says:

    Love and encouragement. God provides this for me through His Holy Word and through my sweet-mother-in-love.

  44. 844
    Deborah says:

    When the Holy Spirit nudges me and I don’t respond, my heart starts racing and I go, “OK, Lord. I know it’s You now.”
    In general, it’s definitely a deadline. Inspiration always comes for me in the heat of the moment, even if I TRY to plan ahead.

  45. 845
    cidny says:

    I would have to say pain and then healing.

  46. 846

    I am motivated by others. If I have someone to memorize scripture with me I will do it all day. I want to beat someone. I wont go running unless someone goes with me. I have to have someone diet with me in order for me to stick to anything.
    It’s not necessarily unable on my own. More that having accountability is my biggest motivater.

  47. 847
    Lisa says:

    Many things motivate me — praise, recognition, creativity (any and every outlet that allows me to use my insatiable creative drive).

    But I would have to say that the MAJOR motivator in my life is pain, pure and simple. Whether it’s the pain of a messy closet that motivates me to clean it out, the pain of my jeans being too tight that motivates me to lose some weight, or the pain in a relationship that causes me to “get downwind of myself” and change. Over and over, God has used pain to draw me to Himself, as I realize my own inadequacy and my huge need for more of Him. In that sense, I would have to say that pain is not necessarily a negative thing, but rather a tool that God can use to shape me and conform me to His image.

  48. 848
    liz says:

    Thank you Beth for this topic I’m not sure what motivates me… I’m reading “Crave” and trying to get my want to back. I think that storms(pain etc)in our lives can do that. I’m praying for motivation (not a storm) to lose a lot of weight(people in blog land pray for me please)

  49. 849
    Lorraine Slind says:

    I am motivated by creating garments (by the worlds standards that are expensive) for only a few dollars. I am a seamstress with a God given passion to create with fabric. I also have an amazing story that involves the Bible Study – Believing God. When I have the least is when I can create the most.Praise You Lord for Livingproof Ministries. Lorraine

  50. 850
    Amy says:

    Having a goal, praying about that goal (small or large goal, doesn’t matter… I bring it all to God), writing down steps and/or verses to keep me in focus, and then reflecting and learning from the process. I have always had an inner drive to be motivated. I constantly am trying to be aware that God put me here in this time frame for a reason. It is a wild ride and I have an inner motivation to see it through. On a more funny note, chocolate is an instant motivator for me.

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