Questions tagged [motivation]

For questions relating to mechanisms that modulates behavior, either as an initiator, limiting influence, or sustainer.

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70
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4answers
6k views

What makes people easily subscribe to pseudoscientific theories?

There are many theories/disciplines that have been categorized as pseudoscience in the scientific community. The list includes many things that are regularly even quoted in media like graphology, ...
56
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5answers
29k views

Does evidence support Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs?

Maslow's Heirarchy of Needs (shown below) is a popular concept and is often taught in basic psychology courses, and often less objectively taught in Business and Marketing courses. A common problem ...
29
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1answer
1k views

How long should I work before taking a break?

I'd like to work as effectively as possible for 8-9 hours a day, whether at work or studying. At some point in completing my major in psych I remember hearing about the importance of taking breaks ...
20
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1answer
2k views

How long can a person stay happy, excited and motivated about something new?

I'm interested in learning more about studies or experiments that determine how long a typical person can stay excited about something new: ...
18
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3answers
7k views

What is the term for human beings' tendency to obey without thinking?

I'm wanting to read more about a certain human behavior, but I am not sure what the proper term for it is, so some of the things I am finding aren't what I am looking for. I'm interested in how Humans ...
5
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2answers
2k views

What exactly is meant when it is said that only you can make yourself happy?

From Lifehack: Thinking that having a significant other will complete you. If you are not a whole person already, then having a romantic partner will not make you whole. Plus, it puts a lot of ...
10
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3answers
13k views

What causes a person to be curious, inquisitive and explorative?

Why do humans (primates) tend to be curious, inquisitive and explorative? They want to know things that they do not. They explore stuff in an attempt to find something new which makes them ...
6
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1answer
521 views

How strong is the need to belong?

Are there any studies that measure the need to belong? Does this need vary greatly from person to person or is there a tight deviation? What would explain why some have very little need to belong ...
3
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2answers
1k views

Does law of attraction have psychological basis? [closed]

A common claim in business and self-help seminars is that optimists are luckier. Is it true that optimism leads to greater success in life? If so, what part of the brain support this so called "...
7
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2answers
875 views

How can motivation be increased by improving brain chemistry with nutrition and activities?

I'm reading some material about motivation and brain chemistry. One of the interesting articles is "7 Ways to Increase Motivation by Improving your Brain Chemistry". I'm interested in a more ...
3
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1answer
2k views

Can motivation for sex be transformed into productive motivation?

Sex seems to be a fundamental drive. To satisfy sexual desire, a person will often masturbate or have sex. What happens if a person abstains from anything sexual? Can this drive be "transferred" to ...
3
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1answer
1k views

Theories of Human Motivation

I have heard the true saying that without motivation, there will be no action on anything which needs to be done. I can't remember where I heard it but I have wondered about what help there can be to ...
24
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1answer
3k views

Is there experimental support for John Perry's “Theory of Structured Procrastination”?

John Perry's theory of structured procrastination can be summed up as follows: Some people are inherently predisposed to be procrastinators across a wide range of domains Such procrastinators are ...
28
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5answers
5k views

Why do higher incentives lead to lower performance for non-rudimentary tasks?

I have watched a number of times this excellent video where Dan Pink discusses the science of motivation. The video states that the higher incentives, the lower performance for non-rudimentary (not ...
19
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1answer
531 views

How can I use gamification to encourage people to complete workplace training?

I am looking for ways to improve the likelihood people will perform mundane but required workplace training. I am looking into gamification techniques. My organisation requires that employees ...
9
votes
1answer
5k views

What makes some things more fun than others universally?

Recently I have been presented with the question, "What makes something addictive, and why are some activities more addicting than others?" This question intrigues me, as logically, the answer would ...
7
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2answers
18k views

Why do some people only work well under pressure?

It is common for people to procrastinate. Putting off tasks until the resulting deadlines get closer and there comes a point at which the person will fire into action. (whether this point leaves ...
14
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1answer
1k views

What is the neurological basis of maintaining self discipline?

Self Discipline, as defined in this meagre Wikipedia article as being as the ability to motivate oneself in spite of a negative emotion This is partly distinct from self control and willpower ...
7
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2answers
670 views

Is procrastination greater when skill is low and rewards offer low status boost and does this lead to efficient task allocation in groups?

I am very interested in procrastination, because it is such a clear sign of lack of motivation. I have a hypothesis about why we procrastinate, which I would like to get tested by you. The assumption ...
12
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1answer
253 views

Is the depletion effect of self-control reliable?

Although a lot of research (Muraven, 1998) has indicated the ego depletion of self-control, a recent paper (Xu, 2014) claims that they fail to replicate the depletion effect: impaired performance in ...
10
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3answers
2k views

Does motivation and interest correlate highly with IQ and can someone be smart but perform poorly in a particular field?

Suppose a person is considered intelligent based on his IQ score. For example, suppose Bob has a high IQ score and is very interested in pure mathematics. He would most probably excel in this field. ...
10
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3answers
632 views

What are effective strategies for increasing concentration and motivation when doing seemingly passive activities such as reading journal articles?

Background Unfortunately I am not a specialist in Cognitive Science I am just a regular CS student who has big interest in cognitive science. I want to share with you some interesting observation I ...
10
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1answer
1k views

Do the motivations and fears behind Enneagram have any scientific reasoning?

Background The Enneagram personality typing system defines set of motivations and basic fears for its nine personality types among people. The system seems to be aimed at personal development of a ...
9
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1answer
369 views

What are other methods to induce ego depletion besides using emotional videos and thought suppression?

Muraven and Baumeister (2000) proposed that self-control is a limited resource akin to strength or a muscle, to deplete this limited resource leads to subsequent self-regulatory failure. Ego depletion,...
7
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1answer
2k views

Does suppressing a desire make it more powerful?

Based on my minimal knowledge of old Freudian Psychoanalysis, if our drives and urges are not met they become more powerful, even overwhelming, for the individual, perhaps causing them psychological ...
7
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1answer
267 views

What causes lack of energy? The relative importance of testosterone versus emotional, genetic, and environmental factors

Some people assume that males lack of energy because of low testosterone. I would think that lack of energy could be due to esteem levels, emotional abuse, low self-worth, and even genetics to some ...
6
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1answer
452 views

Are you more successful if you publicly commit to pursuing a difficult goal?

If you have an ambitious goal, does it help to publicly commit to that goal? For example, if someone is training for a long distance triathlon but doesn't know whether he/she will be able to pull it ...
5
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0answers
114 views

Why do certain activities seem to co-occur with well learnt skills?

I have found that when I do certain activities, while engaged with them, I am inclined to do other activities, as well, which come naturally and do not seem to break productivity of the first ones, ...
5
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2answers
3k views

Why do some people refuse to wear their seat belt while being aware of the risks?

I have multiple friends that simply refuse to wear their seat belt whenever they ride in a car. I make them wear it when in my car, but in any other situation they choose to go without it. They are ...
2
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0answers
108 views

What is the mechanism behind one's fascination in a topic or subject? [closed]

I've been reading about saliency and wondering about its relationship to human interests, particularly hobbies or fields of study. I am thinking that there are typically patterns in what kinds of ...
2
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0answers
470 views

What causes passion, psychologically and chemically, and how does it last? [closed]

I recently finished reading "Habits of a happy brain", which discusses the role of oxytocin, serotonin, endorphin, dopamine, and cortisol in seeking behavior. The book argues that we evolved to ...
1
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1answer
930 views

What is the difference between work engagement and flow?

Work engagement has three aspects: vigor, dedication, and absorption. Flow according to wikipedia "is the mental state of operation in which a person performing an activity is fully immersed in a ...
11
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2answers
310 views

Name of the bias where someone really needs something after they find out it exists

I'm looking for the name of the cognitive bias that is expressed in the following story. A fellow coworker was instrumental in getting a 75 gallon fish tank installed in the lobby of the company that ...
6
votes
2answers
958 views

Psychologically, how does volunteer work help the volunteer?

This question has intrigued me for a long time, ever since I experienced it first hand (and continue to do so). Some feel a compulsion to 'step up' and lend a hand to someone in need. An example, ...
6
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0answers
79 views

Is it sufficient to say self control eliciting the reduced ERN (error-related negativity) in cognitive control tasks?

The limited resource model of self control suggests that the exertion of self control can impair performance in subsequent cognitive control tasks (for details on the model, check this question. Most ...
6
votes
2answers
136 views

Is it good to take playful breaks at work?

I read this Washingon Post article about groups that are trying to encourage play in "workaholic" adults. I'm curious if anything is known on the psychological effects of taking playful breaks at work....
6
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2answers
82 views

Provable ROI for call center rest periods?

Think you can help make life better for a nation of call center workers? At a large insurance company, I used to work in the call center for both Auto Claims and then Homeowner Claims, before I was ...
5
votes
1answer
4k views

What are the key predictive traits of therapeutic success?

In my answer here, to this question : Does hypnotherapy/hypnosis, in any form, for any type of disorder, work? It brought up the valid question of why people quit therapy. Obviously, if the therapy ...
5
votes
1answer
440 views

What is the relation between fun and motivation? Are they the same?

Are 'having fun in doing something' and 'being motivated to do something' the same thing? If not, how are fun and motivation related? Is there any formal definition on this? Would it be possible to ...
5
votes
1answer
186 views

Evolutionary motivation for the existence of pleasure?

It seems like pleasure goes beyond needs. What is its purpose? Is it supposed to make you not do anything, because of how good you feel? Are there animals that don't feel pleasure, but only have needs ...
3
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3answers
2k views

Why do we find things fun?

One may cause to argue that Fun activities are solely based off psychological and physical identification with certain activities, but surely there is a deeper analysis on why we find things fun. ...
3
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0answers
66 views

Effects of quantity and quality of breaks on learning

Are there papers which discuss the effects of quantity and quality of breaks during learning? Do state of the art papers have a common ground? So far I have found these papers: The Fourth R: Recess ...
2
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3answers
3k views

How to change someone's beliefs? [closed]

I tried to change my brother's beliefs. He gets motivated by some bad ideas. Following my attempt to change his beliefs, his beliefs have become even stronger.
2
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1answer
81 views

Is there any actual evidence for the common model of the “real you” and a separate section that contains all your weaknesses?

I have heard this model used or implied by multiple community sources, and some which have been endorsed; most will use different names for the two parts, for example the "subconscious" and &...