Autonomy – The First Key Component of Motivation

Here I dive into the subject of Autonomy and what it represents.

I hope to help You and I better understand the following:

What makes Autonomy a key component of Motivation?

Why is it so important to us? What does Autonomy represent for us?

Please remember that I am approaching this subject with one goal in mind: to facilitate a way for You and I to take control of our lives and positively influence its direction.

I write this so that you and I can learn about what it takes to motivate ourselves and achieve a permanent state of effective Self-Management and Self-Reliance.

Remember, it starts with us. As we learn to master these concepts for ourselves, we are then ready to lead others to the same end.

So let’s get started…

Autonomy Defined

Autonomy – “The right or condition of self-government; freedom from external control                 or influence; independence” – Oxford Dictionary

Autonomy is a Value

The idea of Autonomy evokes an emotional response in many of us. It is a value we endeavor to protect.

Think of the occurrences past and present on an international scale that center on the fight for autonomy. It is a Value we all share and are committed to fight for and defend.

I use the example above to demonstrate the emotional connection we have to the idea of Autonomy. This emotional connection acts as a driving force and we begin to realize its power as a component in Motivation.

Autonomy is a part of our Identity  

Autonomy is just a tool to carve and preserve our identity, and the relevant question is not: “How do you want to exercise your autonomy”, but: “How do you define yourself”.       

Autonomy is a key component of our Identity.

Each of us has constructed a Mental Model of ourselves – an idea of who we are and how we fit in and relate to the world around us.

Identity is one aspect of this mental model and influences what we choose to Believe about ourselves. This mental model of identity is comprised of the following:

Self-Esteem – How much You and I like and respect ourselves

Self-Efficacy – How good You and I think we are at something

What we believe about ourselves will determine our levels of confidence and self-worth.

Perhaps, what autonomy affords us is the ability to create or re-create our own narrative. To identify our strengths and abilities.

And in order for this opportunity to not be wasted, we must find a way to build faith in our purpose and develop the courage to demonstrate this purpose in our lives.

Autonomy, Empowerment and Trust

Okay, with me so far? Good.

I want to bring the concept of Empowerment into the conversation.

Empowerment Defined:

“To increase the degree of autonomy and self-determination in people in order to enable them to represent their interests in a responsible and self-determined way, acting on their own authority.”  – Wikipedia

There is shortened variation on this definition that I would like to share here:

Empowerment put simply: “to give power or authority to someone”

Now I want you to think back to the times in your life in which you were empowered. Maybe it was a parent, teacher, coach, boss, mentor…

Now, in order to empower us, they needed to extend something to us. Something that you and I must hold sacred…


Trust is: “Reliance on the integrity and abilities of a person. Trust involves faith, confidence, and hope.”

In order for people to have empowered us, they first had to trust us. The empowerment they gave us was and is a symbol of that trust.

Bringing it all Together

In-order for us to achieve a state of motivation and thus autonomy that is worth anything at all to us, it must be internal (intrinsic).

The goal is Self-Motivation

            A key component is Autonomy

                        Empowerment grants this Autonomy

                                    Trust is extended and symbolized by Empowerment

“The trust that we put in ourselves makes us feel trust in others.” – Francois de la Rochefoucauld

The Finale

Motivation is intrinsic and it is our responsibility.

This means that our Autonomy, as a component of Motivation, is also our responsibility.

Following that pattern of thought, we come to the realization that Empowerment and Trust become our responsibility.

Key Point: Self-Motivation requires that we grant ourselves Autonomy. To do this, we must Empower ourselves. And to do this, we must Trust ourselves.

And now we have some key questions to ask ourselves:

Are we ready to take Responsibility for our Autonomy?

Do we Believe in ourselves enough to grant us Empowerment?

Are we ready to Trust ourselves?

We need to take a good look at the Mental Models we hold of ourselves. We need to make sure that we Believe in ourselves and have confidence in our abilities. We need to begin to Trust ourselves, who we are, and what we stand for.

Do we Trust ourselves? Do we Believe in ourselves?

And if not…

How do we begin to trust ourselves?

How do we change the mental narrative to one of Confidence, Self-esteem and Self-efficacy?

How do we change what we Believe about ourselves and grant us the Autonomy we deserve?

Next Steps:

Each component of Motivation contributes to the other components. We have some important questions to answer.

Allow for these articles about motivation to come full circle. Remember, the most powerful ideas and concepts in this life transcend every corner of it.

You and I will get there. Trust me.

Let’s see if the next two components of Motivation might be able to help us.

Thanks for Reading

Sincerely, TheDreamHustler

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