What Motivates You?

By Kyle Ohman

No matter what your occupation is in life you have different things that motivate you. Whether it is working hard to provide for your family or busting your tail because you are trying to achieve something that everyone said you couldn’t do, we all get our motivation from somewhere.

Having played collegiate and professional basketball my background is sports and without having motivation in sports you are not going to go very far. I would even take that one step farther and say without having the right things to motivate you, you will not go very far. This is not just true for sports but in everyday life as well.

In my basketball career I have played with or against hundreds of different players and it is pretty easy to see what motivates each player. Some of the motivations are pure like; wanting to be the best player they can, helping the team win, or having a chance to play at the next level. Others were not as much and might be; make a bunch of money, get all the girls, fame, etc.

I am not here to tell you “good” or “bad” on what motivates you, but I would like to give you 3 tips/warnings when deciding on what you are going to let motivate you.

Long Term Motivation

Too many people don’t have long term motivation. They are only focused on the immediate motivation of getting to the weekend, buying a new toy, or something along those lines. However when that is over it is back to the unmotivated style of life. That is why it is important to have long term goals that are going to keep you motivated and working hard.

Don’t be afraid to set a big goal and let it motivate you. You need something that is going to motivate you every day to want to do better and accomplish more in life. It is going to be something different for every person, so it is up to you to decide.

Don’t Try to Please Everyone

Something that I struggled with when I was younger was trying to please others and make everyone happy, but that is impossible. Nothing you do is going to make every single person happy. So if your motivation is to please everyone then you are always going to feel discouraged because it won’t ever happen.

Your motivation has to be to yourself and doing the best that you can. Stay true to what you believe in and what you are trying to do. After you do that pleasing others will be an added bonus but either way you will know that you stuck by what you believe in and you did your best.

This is where family and friends are really important. No matter what happens or what other people might be saying about you, they know who you are and what kind of person you are. These are the only people that should really matter to you when trying to please others or make people proud of you.

Are You Going to be Satisfied?

There are a lot of successful people in the world that have gotten where they are by being motivated by money, fame, etc. I have no argument there. My question though is this, will those people ever be satisfied? If your motivation is to get as rich as you can then you will always be wanting more and eventually it will consume you.

Fame, people, and money are always going to come and go. Putting your motivation solely in those things will never give you what you are looking for, at least in the long run.

Another big motivation that people use is proving other people wrong. Someone says that you aren’t good enough and that motivates you to work even harder. There is nothing wrong with that but I would be careful on whether you are doing it to prove to yourself that you can or to prove to them that they are wrong, there is a big difference.

There are always going to be people that say you can’t do it, but if you put your motivation in proving them wrong and are always walking around with a chip on your shoulder you are going to become a very negative person that feels like the world is against you. Choose to do something that no one says you can do to prove to yourself that you can do it, that is motivation enough.


Everyone needs to have motivation to have a successful life and each individual person’s motivation is going to be different. It is up to you to decide what you are going to choose to motivate you, and to help you achieve your goals in life. I hope that I have been able to help you in your process of determining what will work for you. In no way am I considered an expert on this matter but I am glad to be able to share some of my life experiences and other life experiences that I have witnessed first hand. I would love to hear your comments and opinions below. Thanks for reading!


Author Bio
This article was written by Kyle Ohman. Kyle was a thousand point scorer at Liberty University (div. 1), was ranked the 19th best shooter in the country by Fox Sports his senior year. Kyle has also played professionally in Spain. Most recently he coached a high school team that played on a national level and beat the 12th ranked team in the nation. Coach Ohman is the Co-Owner and founder of BasketballHQ.com