At a personal level, the issue of rewards is complex. Most the theorists focus on the distinction between intrinsic and extrinsic rewards for learning. An example of an intrinsic reward is the pleasure it might give you to learn a musical instrument or the good feeling created when you learn how to control your anger.
An example of an extrinsic reward would be your child being given a sweet after they have finished their homework or you receiving a degree in return for years of study. The general view is that for learning to be really successful, the learner has to be intrinsically motivated, although it is clear that having external positive feedback is also bound to be helpful.
Point out that the opposite of being demotivated is not being motivated, it is not being demotivated. You can minimize the dissatisfaction by creating hygiene factors, but you need things that will really satisfy a learner to make them motivated. You can see this expressed blow:
Switched off from learning —/— Not switched off from learning
Not switched off from learning —/— Switched on to learning
If you stop being switched off from learning, it just means that you stop being against it. It doesn’t mean that you are for it! Many people who go on training courses at work reluctantly get themselves into a position of being not switched off, but they don’t go further and become switched on to the learning they are being offered.
Once you understand this strange kind of layering of opposites, you are much better equipped to motivate yourself and others to learn. You need to be really “satisfied” if you are going to be switched on and, therefore, powered up to learn.
Sometimes external rewards can even work against you. For example, it has been found that if you are trying to encourage children to read, rewarding them for the number of books they read may in fact be counter-productive. Apparently, if you do this, they will read a higher number of books at speed, but not enjoy, learn, or remember what they have read.
Nevertheless, most of us are able to work out how to administer treats as rewards when we have done something, we have set our mind to. Such rewards might be going for a walk, a weekend break away, a meal out with our partner, or simple things such as a cup of coffee are a piece of chocolate (although for the effects of certain foods on your brain, don’t forget what you read earlier!). But, remember this. If you come to depend on external rewards, what happens when you stop receiving them? Do you go on or do you grind to a halt because you lack the internal drive?
Think about the learning you have done in your life so far. How much of it was motivated by extrinsic reward and how much did you undertake because you wanted to do it for its own sake? Of the things you are currently thinking about learning, how many are you actively switched on to rather than not switched off from? What kind of rewards work best for you?
This Article is Taken from Power-up-your-mind-learn-faster-work-smarter.
Written by Arshad. A