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Home » The Psychology of Self-Motivation by Scott Geller (Full Transcript)

The Psychology of Self-Motivation by Scott Geller (Full Transcript)

Scott Geller at TEDxVirginiaTech

Here is the full text and summary of author Scott Geller’s talk: The Psychology of Self-Motivation at TEDxVirginiaTech conference.

Listen to the Audio MP3 version here:


Thank you. Thank you. Beyond boundaries – what a theme huh!

Now when I think of boundaries, I think of rules, regulations and restrictions. And I think of the parents and the teachers and the supervisors who hold us accountable with regard to those boundaries. Then that’s not a bad thing.

I know if you’re like me, I need supervisors, I need someone holding me accountable to do the right thing. But beyond boundaries is something different. I think of those leaders, those teachers, those supervisors, those parents who inspire us to go beyond the call of duty, to do more than we have to, to do it not because they tell us, but because we want to.

I would like to share with you what the research says about how to make that happen and not just for other people but for yourself. Here’s the deal. How can we inspire people and ourselves to be self-motivated? There is another word. It’s called empowerment. You’ve heard that word right, and the management definition of empowerment is get it done. Just get it done with fewer resources and less time, I empower you, make it happen. I’m talking about feeling empowered. That’s different. Feeling empowered is when you are self-motivated.

Now if you want to know if you feel empowered or if your child, your student, your worker feels empowered, ask them three questions. And if they say yes to these three questions, they will feel empowered. And by the way this is not based on common sense, it’s based on research. But you’ve all been there, so it will feel like common sense.

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