Look within for recognition and you'll always have a great source of motivation.
I was reading an article on the nine worst things that managers do to make good employees quit. Number two on the list was: ‘They don’t recognise contributions and reward good work’. And I agree that it can be soul destroying to put in all the effort you possibly can, to do the very best that you can do and then not be recognised for all of your effort.
Unfortunately though this is something that is likely to happen quite often, in all aspects of your life. Your boss may not notice all the effort you put in your job, your friends may not notice the time you spend organising get togethers and your family may not thank you for the time you spend cooking meals/washing clothes and/or making sure there’s food to eat.
Maybe you’re one of the lucky ones and you’re surrounded by people who do recognise all of your efforts and take the time to thank you and show their appreciation…..or maybe you’re like most of us and just wish that was the case!
Feel like you're efforts aren't being recognise? What can you do about it?
You can become more and more demotivated each time you don’t receive the recognition you deserve or you could actively remind people of the good work you’re doing and what you’re achieving – although to be honest, that can become frustrating & sadly any subsequent thanks often doesn’t seem so satisfying.
But there is one other thing you can do…
You can look internally for recognition and reward.
Internal or intrinsic rewards are outcomes that give personal satisfaction whenever you do a job well. The reward or satisfaction comes from within you and the best thing about them is that they don’t rely on other people. Extrinsic rewards or recognition from the boss, friends or family are great but they often only offer temporary satisfaction whereas intrinsic rewards help you to build prolonged satisfaction within yourself and over time can also help to create an attitude of success.
Only putting in an effort for external rewards?
If you only do your job for the pay or the recognition you receive, you’re often going to be disappointed (especially in the veterinary industry!). However if the main reason for doing what you do is for enjoyment of the task itself, the sense of meaning you get from work or the satisfaction you get from helping animals and their owners then you’re on to a winner.
It means your happiness and the satisfaction you feel from doing a good job at work or being a good friend or parent is no longer reliant on other people but comes from within. If you’re happy to look for intrinsic rewards then you only need to rely on yourself for motivation.
And if there’s one person you can rely on to not let you down …it’s yourself!
A version of this post was published in the VNJ January 2016