Motivation of Approach Goals and Avoidance Goals

Post your response to the following: Earning your degree takes dedication, commitment, and time. The motivation that drives you through the tough times and keeps you focused is the foundation for your commitment. Discuss whether your motivations for striving are intrinsic, introjected, identified, or extrinsic.

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Wow, as I read the four definitions I was struck that I am completing my degree as a consequence of all of these motivations. I guess the least strong motivation is extrinsic motivation. I am a very smart person, by some measures. My family has always expected good things out of me. I sometimes feel pressure to become someone. This is probably mostly perceived pressure because I am pretty sure that being a good parent is striving enough. Second, introjected motivation keeps me going because I would feel anxious if I was not accomplishing something with my life; not because other people want me to but because I think that I should. Identified motivation plays a part in my life because I know that this degree is an important goal, a goal that is worth seeking. Also, I do enjoy the challenge, indeed the commitment involved with college, which is intrinsic motivation. 

Do you believe your goal of earning a degree is an approach goal or an avoidant goal? Explain your answer.

I have sometimes treated it as an avoidant goal. As I mentioned earlier, I try to avoid the perception that I am not going anywhere. That is definitely a motivating factor in my decision to go to college. More importantly, though, I think that my goal of earning a degree is an approach goal. I want to become something. It has been my experience that the best position to be in is when something is pushing from behind and pulling from ahead. That is the case with my motivation to earn a college degree. My negative perception of failure pushing me to excellence, while at the same time my striving to become someone pulls me forward.

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Bolt, M. (2004). Pursuing human strengths: A positive psychology guide. New York, NY: Worth Publishing.

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