Motivation is a state of a person being driven to achieve a particular goal. It is a mental state that drives an individual to do what it takes to attain his set goals. The study of psychology at a very basic level will provide examples of drive theories. These include three: the allostatic, convergent theory of motivation, the emotional and motivation state model of motivation and the selective drive theory of motivation. These different drive theories can be separated into separate categories based on their characteristics.
The Allosteric Theory
The allosteric theory is considered the most widely used and powerful in determining how individuals relate to their drive to achieve a particular goal. The allostatic state is characterized by a person following his natural tendencies or instincts. This is usually considered the most passive of the three models. For example, an individual who has been born allostatic will not feel the need to exert force on themselves to succeed.
The convergent theory of motivation states that motivation is a dynamic process that develops over time. This process is similar to the Allostatic principle but the individual does not consciously choose to act towards a goal. This model is the second most powerful in determining the level of motivation an individual has. The individual will feel the urge to act when the situation or opportunity presents itself.
Emotional And Motivation State Theories
The third theory, emotional and motivation state theories, is considered the most complicated because of its strong emphasis on the emotional aspects of motivation. Emotions are considered to be the driving force of all drive theories. The theory suggests that people develop emotions such as joy, optimism and fear during times when they are faced with challenges and opportunities.
Contingency Theory Of Motivation
The emotional state model of motivation suggests that a person will act based on his personal values, beliefs and attitudes towards certain activities. People who are considered to be “warm” state individuals will become more driven to accomplish their goals because they believe that it will help them maintain a certain level of happiness and well-being. Whereas “cold” person will have the opposite attitude and will become less motivated in their attempt to attain a goal. The theory also suggests that people develop these attitudes because of the influence of environmental factors and events.
According to the contingency theory of motivation, this theory is less influential than the other models. In this theory, the level of motivation will develop according to the situation or environment a person finds himself in. A person will become highly motivated if he faces a challenge or obstacle that requires him to work harder than usual, even though he is faced with no immediate threat.
Motivational psychology is actually a field of psychology that studies the psychological aspects of motivation. In this field, the different theories are analyzed to understand how and why an individual develops motivations. Motivation can also be influenced by environmental variables and external events. Aside from these three theories, there is also the self-structure theory which states that the internal state of an individual shapes his/her motivational environment. By studying all these theories, we can be able to understand more about motivation and what drives an individual to learn, develop and achieve.