The Secret to Endless Motivation

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I’m committed to the idea of intrinsic motivation.  In fact, I’ve been fighting for this idea my entire adult life.

This concept is all about being internally motivated.  Intrinsic motivation is doing something because you have a personal interest in learning and enjoyment in the subject itself.

Happiness counselor and friend Wes Bertrand, who researched it extensively and posted his findings in his MA thesis called  Learner Driven Education, defines it as an interest and desire in learning, which leads to more effective learning.

Intrinsic motivation is the rocket fuel behind your Single Motivating Purpose and why you desire to strike out on your own and create a purpose-driven internet business.

Intrinsic motivation is at the core of why we desire freedom so much.  Freedom is about the ability to choose what you do with your time, your body, and the results of those actions including financial gain.

On the other hand, focusing on money is an Extrinsic Motivation, like grades were in school.

I believe, and have seen over and over, that in order to have long term success and fulfillment, your business and pursuits must come from an internal, not an external, place.

Are you Intrinsically Motivated?

Being intrinsically motivated to have your own purpose-based internet business means that you have a desire to create value for others that comes from the core of who you are.

Here are a few ways you can tell that starting a purpose-based business is an intrinsic pursuit:

  1. No matter how many fears and extrinsic challenges are in the way of finding an audience and getting started, you still have the desire or spark to do it.
  2. You want to make an impact on the world, or at least a group of people in a market you are passionate about.
  3. You listen to and read just about everything you have time for in the area of starting an internet business; you just cannot get enough.
  4. You have a deep desire to live your life on your terms.
  5. You’re tired of your boss or just the idea of having ANY boss.
  6. You want your productivity (work) to matter to you.

I could list even more reasons, but really it boils down to understanding that if you have the desire to help the world with your own internet business, you have it in you to succeed.

Simple as that.

That desire is why you MUST get paid to live your purpose!

Dedication to Intrinsic Motivation

As I said before,  I’m personally dedicated to helping people I care about live an intrinsically motivated life, and part of putting my money where my mouth is includes (1) my commitment to making Internet Business Mastery my sole business passion and (2) taking my kids out of public school in order to experience an education aligned with their own interests (just to name a couple).

A Personal Example of Extrinsic Motivation

Public school is largely extrinsically motivated.  You are trying to prove to others you know something that you may, or most likely may NOT want to know in the first place, all for a grade someone else gives you and finally a piece of paper saying to did certain things that others told you to do.

I spent 4 months in a Utah History class in Jr. High School, which was a fantastic example of extrinsic motivation. I had no desire to learn how the Mormon pioneers settled in Utah and how their culture shaped the design and growth of that fair state. As is the case with all “schooling,” no one asked me if I had a desire to learn this subject. I would have never chosen the class from an intrinsically motivated standpoint; it was just required for me to get to the next grade.

Anyways, back to the proof of my personal dedication.

I pulled my kids out of public school and put them into the type of school I wished I could have gone to .  In fact, when I describe the school to others, they wish the same for themselves.

There are many things I like about the school, but the biggest thing is that the kids design the curriculum.  The kids have a desire or passion and the teachers design a class around it.  My 13 year old wanted to learn about architecture and they created a math class all about architecture.

When they need to do a science class they go to a forge and learn how to make swords.  Not only did they learn all the scientific principles that go into blacksmithing, they actually MADE SWORDS.

Another science class included them driving up to a high-tech lab at the local university, where they got a class in cutting-edge nanotechnology that is the future of healthcare and anti-aging  from the actual scientists.

The kids wanted to take Spanish  so one of the classes involved going to Panama and learning Spanish from a local teacher.  Yep, they flew to Panama and spent 3 weeks discovering the culture, history, and the Spanish language – all because the kids wanted to.

A Business Example of Intrinsic Motivation

For many “gurus”, teaching internet business and marketing is a passing fad.  They come into the market to make a bunch of money and then they split.  Some realize it’s far more of a challenge to make that money and they “retire” as soon as possible.

Jason and I realized this business perfectly fits the Single Motivating Purpose for each of us.  This isn’t just about making money; if that were my only goal, I’d sell diet pills, iphone apps, or promote dating sites.  For us, it’s about fulfilling our SMP while helping others create freedom, fulfillment, and happiness with their own internet business.   That is why we are still going 7+ years later.

Gurus have come and gone.  Many more have been pouring into the market to shine bright, make lots of money, and then “retire” because, for them, this business is not about passion or purpose, but instead about making money.

I’ve watched it all happen, over and over, and I’m still here.

In fact, Jason and I are just getting started.

I wake up every day with more ideas on how to help inspire others to start their purpose-driven business.

It’s not only exciting and fun, it also comes from a place of Intrinsic Motivation.

Dedication to Intrinsic Motivation:

Intrinsic motivation seems like an obvious concept that has largely been ripped out of most of our lives, but now you have the chance to take that concept and incorporate it back into your life.

My life now is very much like my kids’ school.  I follow my passions, and I am committed to my Single Motivating Purpose—both are from a place of living from intrinsic motivation.

I believe a major key to happiness is exchanging value based on your purpose.  In other words, getting paid to live your purpose, so let’s get to it.

Take Action

  1. Start thinking about and focusing on your internal interests.  If you have your SMP, find ways to take action to achieving it every day.  If you don’t have your SMP, please listen to our Single Motivating Purpose episode to get started in figuring out what it is.
  2. Decide, right now, that you are going to get paid to live your purpose.  The fact that you have the desire means you can do it, deciding to get paid to live your purpose means you are committing to taking action towards doing it!
  3. Make a plan.  If you don’t know how, find someone who does, exchange value, and follow their plan.  If you are ready to find and build a purpose-driven internet business, you can check out Internet Business Mastery Academy.
  4. Take bold action.  In fact, why not start right now?

I’m going to say it again: If you have the desire to start a purpose-based internet business, do it because it’s within you.  If you have that desire, you cannot fail as long as you dedicate your life to fulfilling your intrinsic motivation.

Here’s a question for you: what aspects of your life are currently being lived by intrinsic motivation?  Please let me know in the comments below!

Listen Now!

Download the MP3 Here


  1. Great post! The idea of intrinsic motivation is interesting, and I know I have it for my business as I match all of the six items on the checklist at the top!

  2. I am really enjoying the posts and podcasts on this, its fitting in really well with where I am in the Academy.

    As for #5, I have to say that I really like my boss, and even as I plan to ultimately strike out on my own I feel really fortunate in that regard! :)

    • Nick,

      You are certainly fortunate to have a boss that you like. I’m sure he will be happy an encouraging of you when the time comes if he is one of the few good bosses out there.

  3. I like the idea of intrinsic motivation, where I fail, is that I don’t see how I can possibly get paid enough money to support my family doing what I love to do.

    • If your market is to narrow, consider backing out one level.

      Let’s say you want to do a site about scuba diving one particular part of one barrier reef and there doesn’t seem to be enough interest in that level of focus. Considering backing up to diving ANY barrier reef or simply coral reef diving. If that doesn’t get you enough people, then even going out one more level and talking about something even a bit more broad.

  4. Jason, thank you for your inspiration you provide to me. I’m excited, because I see internet business mastery as helping me in my business of helping young people and adults with Aspegers syndrome find a way to make a profitable living. And a purpose driven internet is part of my retirement plan. You may want to stop by my site to see my endorsement of your site :)

    • Actually, I wrote this one, but you are very welcome. Expect more like this, it’s my passion and nothing is getting in the way of my expressing it and helping others with the info!

      I like the name of your site already, I’ll head over now…

  5. Hi Jeremy and Jason,
    I really loved this episode on motivation. As you know, if started my online business a couple of days ago and I’m highly motivated to make it go over the top.
    Thank you, for kicking my ass and giving me the motivation and confidence to follow my purpose!

    I’m curious about the upcoming changes to your website and the new BookChat your doing :-)

    Best regards,

    • I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

      The feed is no longer going to be JUST the podcast. We are thinking about it like a TV channel, where there are multiple shows. So far, we have the Podcast, AUDIOblog, VIDEOblog, and BOOKchat. There may even be more shows, but we don’t want to overwhelm people, just supply as much awesome content as we can to help! Let me know if you have any other questions.

  6. Jeremy I really enjoyed your thoughts on this topic. I just listened to the podcast on SMP and it was excellent. I have put a lot of effort into changing my mindset on this the past couple of months and it has made a HUGE positive impact on my life. IBM is a big part of my motivation and I can’t want to hear what’s next!

    • I’m so glad I could help! That is the mission, for me. I just finished working on the next post! SHOULD be out next week… we’ll see!

  7. Jeremy, thanks so much for this episode. I’m working a full-time job but pursuing my passion of helping blind people see. I came upon the skill of human echolocation several years ago and have since taught myself to see with my eyes closed (with fairly good detail and relative confidence). This skill has profound implications that there is far more to human perception than we generally implement.

    I’ve documented my journey of learning this skill on my blog and recently published the very first book and audiobook which teaches this profound, emerging skill for the blind community.

    Your show has been a great help to me for years and I appreciate all the great advice. It has been paramount to my now marginal success and hopefully soon, greater success! :)
    Thanks again!

    • Human biosonar is so fascinating! I’m glad my post was useful to you and I wish you great success in helping blind people see!!

    • Tim,

      Wow! That sounds amazing. What a great niche.

      • Thanks Jason, It’s definitely getting more press as a skill these days and things have been going great, but besides that it is simply amazing to have the ability help people so dramatically change their lives.

  8. Heard you on the School Sucks Podcast and really enjoyed hearing your story and ideas. Especially like the idea that everyone who finds your stuff is doing so on their own accord and motivation. Good stuff! Look forward to seeing what else you have to offer.

  9. Great choices of intro and outro music! Love it!

  10. Thank you for this. I quit my day job a month ago to pursue my own internet business and have been battling every single type of fear known to man since then. This was an awesome reminder that I can do this as long as I am true and listen to myself.

    On a different note, As a parent of young kids I have been researching alternative education and I would love to hear more about your children’s school and how you researched and found them.

    Thanks again.

    p.s. Loving the additions to your content. Again, as a mom with young kids it can be difficult to listen to an entire podcast or video without being interrupted. I have found it really useful to be able to read an article and then go back to the video/audio later.

    • You are very welcome, I’m glad you found value from it!

      After 9 years since I quit my day jobs I still have fears as well! Every level has new and sometimes old fears to battle. The key is certainly to stay true to yourself and your SMP, that is how I get through them.

      Sudbury schools are the ones I’d recommend. They have them in most states. The key is as much educational autonomy as possible, learner directed education.