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Lately I realized that I only have motivation for things that garner me positive attention, appreciation, admiration, etcetera. The fact that I get positive attention is the engine behind all the effort I do; the more appreciation, the more effort, and vice versa. It's like this in all areas of my life; I start doing things because I like doing them or because they interest me, but if I don't get attention for it my interest wanes and disappears fairly quickly. I don't do things just for the attention, but the appreciation IS the thing that keeps me going and motivates me to do more effort and to become better. I find this disconcerting, but I don't know what to do about it… My question is about my studies. I don't get any appreciation for my studies, not in the form of admiration, not in the form of good results, and I feel I'm not doing enough effort. I need to break this circle, but right now even a game with level-ups and rewards has more draw on me than my studies. I need help..
Quantumphysica Quantumphysica 18-21, F 17 Answers Jan 21 in Health

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Maybe its time you learned to appreciate yourself?

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all i can say is wow!<br />
best answer 4 the person who read that 60 page letter

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I actually did.

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dang! then take the prize girl wat u waintin on lol

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This has two timescales: a short term and a long term. The long term involves a lot of aspects and tackling them will not result in the quick progress you need for this exam period, I'll send you an EP message about that later. For the short time scale: As you mentioned that long term goals have a low motivation factor for you (they did have for me as well, it is nothing unusual), I suggest to break them down into a list of short term realistic subgoals (daily learning schedules etc.). And get your b/f into rewarding you for reaching the subgoals, e. g. by preparing you a nice meal, some nice bedroom things etc.

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Meh, we all want approval and praise. I know if no one likes what I write I tend to think it's **** and want to throw it away. But I've started writing for me and am trying to believe that some people will like what I write, others won't, and still others simply won't care. You have to do what you want for you. You have to be happy with what you do and not focus so much on others praise. I know it's hard, but realizing it is the first step so kudos to you keep it up!

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It's good that you know. It puts you ahead of the game.<br />
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It's necessary to be completely honest to the point of being harsh, if you ever want to change anything. There is no 'painless' way of learning things. <br />
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I have a question, though: Has there ever been anything for a moment, that you enjoyed without thinking of anything but yourself or what you were doing? Even a glimpse. And if so, what was it?

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In high school, I became interested in physics. I first did it in secret, because I studied human sciences (the "garbage can course" of the belgian school system, if you get what I mean, all the dropouts from better courses end up there) and I didn't want people to think I was pretentious for thinking I could study something more difficult. I loved it, it brought me so much joy, and eventually I was so obsessed that I couldn't keep it a secret anymore. (You know, the feeling when you're in love and you want to tell everyone how great your BF/GF is? That.) I became the best of my class, had 100% for mathematics and everything else in the 90% range, I switched courses to the hardest course of my school (8h of math, 3h of physics, 2h chemistry, etc) and finished as an honor student and best of my year. By then, my passion for physics had given me a big friends group (passion attracts like-minded souls), lots of outside occupations related to physics and math, the appreciation of my teachers… I had always been a loner without friends, either bullied or ignored, and having all that was like living in a dream… And what a dream it turned out to be. I went to university, started studying physics there, still super-motivated and willing to dow whatever it took to succeed… and I developed schizophrenia, ended up incarcerated, and when I was finally released, they advised me to do something without math. So I picked Art History. It's my second year in that course now.

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is "...garner[ing] [me] positive attention, appreciation, admiration, etcetera." from yourself an insufficient motivation? <br />
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I think it reasonable to feel it disconcerted, because (from my experience), this leads to a character flaw that grows bigger and bigger the farther up the achievement or corporate ladder a person climbs. The character flaw I've seen manifest is "ME". Despite MEs being on the same team working towards the same goals, MEs inhibit the team's progress, because they HAVE to be right, even when clearly wrong, and EVERYONE is considered competition who could steal their recognition.<br />
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This is what I've experienced. It may not be you, but self-centered, arrogant personalites typically create that ME employee. I really can't help you there. It's a matter of looking within yourself to be sure this isn't your personality. If it is, and you don't like it, you must come to hate it enough to change yourself.<br />
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In regards to your study, perhaps if you look at it a bit differently you could find your motivation. Consider each new concept you master as yet another accomplishment and bestow that appreciation for your efforts upon yourself. That new understanding, new knowledge is a reward to yourself. Then, apply those new rewards to future rewards as you advance your self-development through education.<br />
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I'm happy you realize the pitfalls of the path you're on, but we can only suggest ways of dealing with it. I suggest you get to the root for why such attention (from others?) is needed to motivate you and attack and destroy that root.

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Thank you so much for your long reply. You are right, I am very self-centered, to the point of being a narcissist (but one with an incredibly bizarre self-image, as I don't think I'm great at all, I just want others to think I'm great…) and I know that this doesn't make me the nicest person. I see all this, and I see how it is self-sabotaging and destructive, but I don't know how to change, I don't know how I've come to be this way. What you propose for my studies is difficult, as what I do is basically just information-stuffing. There are no skills or concepts to be mastered, only endless amounts of pretty senseless data to be processed. I used to be a physicist, but after I developed schizophrenia I went to study Art History because it was the only thing that had no mathematics. I think in the two years I'm already studying it, I had perhaps one course I really liked… (and I can't go study something else, costs and stuff…)

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Lass, I appreciate your candor. However, if you've been clinically diagnosed with schizophrenia, I'm way out of my league. It is a highly complex personality syndrome...to say the least. While I normally believe we're capable of overcoming most of our personal issues in life, I realize there's much about the human mind we don't truly know. Are you receiving treatment?

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I am clinically diagnosed (how that came to be you can read in the reply above) and I do receive treatment, but not very intensively because my parents believe mental illness is mostly weakness of character, and they don't want me to get used to being treated carefully because it would make me wallow in self-pity.

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What do you think?

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I'm not sure. It's such an intangible thing. I do feel like I have no character strength and no discipline. I am very event-driven, both good and bad. Instant gratification, as someone else noted. Long term goals that have no benefits for a long time (like studying to get a diploma in like, 3 years) are very hard for me. I also have symptoms that I know are chemical/genetical, and I can hardly help it if I hallucinate. I have meds but on a very low dosage, and I still have a lot of symptoms, but because of the side-effects and my parents disapproval I don't really do anything about it. Honestly, the hallucinating part is easier to bear, because I don't feel like it's my fault when it happens.

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My normal militaristic approach of identify the enemy, locate the enemy, then kick the enemy in the *** will not help you, lass. If it is known how you became pschizophrenic, I'd think it reasonable an effective treatment plan (wish drugs weren't involved) should help you navigate your way out of it. Hallucinations are scary to me...I don't ever want to experience them. Unfortunately, I don't know what else I could say to help you. I'm rootin' for you to overcome it...and, perhaps, it may be time to step out on your own to ask for help from professionals beyond the meds. Go well, lass. think about it...

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Thank you a lot for replying and reading all my ranting. I think that there is much to say for your strategy, actually; maybe I just need to find me a pair of big girl panties and stop wallowing in self-pity indeed. I will try my best, you have really given me some courage. Thank you again.

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YW...might I suggest a motivational movie? See: "Patton" starring George C. Scott. I endorse your approach...let that honored general show you how! Tee Hee. (Smile, Kid. I suspect when you lick this, the world will open anew...nothing will hold you back. I wanna meet this kid when it does...;-) ) I'm out, Lass.

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My answers are seldom short....But that's the beauty of who I am.....Details and typically that's where you find the answer...<br />
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If I may....<br />
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Your age and what motivates you is pretty typical at this stage in your life (with one twist)...<br />
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I raised 3 boys and each, the same at you at some point but they grew out if it and a tad younger than you.....<br />
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Now the "twist" part.<br />
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What I'm sensing from your post is more of an "attitude" gratification "thing" ...Its a "me" and a "for me" attitude that if something, no matter how trivial it might be, as long as it makes you feel good, you're all over it...<br />
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My concern if and when I have met women with this attitude is that they're pretty selfish...They only want to entertain themselves and I'm included as long as they're satisfied....<br />
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Few I have met like this ever find it motivating to make OTHERS feel good or feel gratified by doing something even when there's nothing in it for them.....<br />
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On the JOB/Relationships - Even worse....These types are important at work and are raved about....and when they come home, they're "just" Mom, or, Honey...Not Ms. VP and this is a dangerous thing for a relationship and work....MEN...do this a lot....Thee're IMPORTANT at work but "just Dad" at home....and they expect, the same respect as they get at work...Well the people at home don't WORK for them....<br />
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I'm seeing this more and more with your age group.....and I can go on and on but will pause here....<br />
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I'm not saying I'm "right"....nor do I have to be or even if you agree.....I'm sharing my experience here both from what I've seen and in face to some degree, lived with - "Instant gratification" as the motivator <br />
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:)

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I believe you may need to focus on yerself. You may ask yourself, "Why are you studying that course? What do I wanna do with in the future in terms of career perspectives?" It may be less stressful if you concentrate on one area, like pick a study you like, think you can benefit from it in the near future and go for it. Don't think about rewards/ appreciations just yet. They will come to you over time, with the effort you put in. <br />
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All the best.

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You have to step back and appreciate yourself and your efforts. Only you can make yourself the best that you can be.

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The only person that can change your habits is you. Hard truth.

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Just create a new tax for it....TAXES can fix anything...:)

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You are addicted to Approval….it's your fix, buzz, gotta have…go cold turkey and feel the underlying emotion you are running from. It's probably a feeling of not good enough, not loved, not worth it- but you are the only one who knows deep sown what it is you cannot sit with for long

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atleast you have something that motivates you. I have nothing at all. truly nothing.

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