This is a post from my older blog, hiddensecretwisdom.blogspot.

A review of:
Zupek, R. (November 26, 2009). 5 ways to stay motivated after the perks are gone. Retrieved November from:

Rewards are an extra motivator. An extrinsic reward will never be a good substitute for intrinsic motivation and reasons.

“5 ways to stay motivated after the perks are gone,” by Rachel Zupek was an article on today. The first thing that came across my mind was “external motivation vs. internal motivation.”

I actively promote: autonomy, free choice, self-direction, and internal motivation as a recreational therapist practitioner. I am opposed to behavior modification (b-mod). Alfie Kohn has presented the disaster results of b-mod in his books. Amazon search or Google search Alfie Kohn for more information. Basically, Kohn argues that behavior-modification is not effective at long-term behavior change. It is only effective for a short term period (until the reward ends). A person who is only motivated to do something because of rewards is not being authentic and real. They’re being manipulated or bribed into doing a behavior. The big question is: will the new behavior continue once the b-mod plan ends? In other words, will the person continue doing the behavior without a reward? Or, will a person need to be on a b-mod plan for the rest of their life?

Monetary rewards have not been a strong motivated in my own life. I had read job postings at several places that paid more than my salary that didn’t require a degree. I could have left my job to get the “reward” more money. However, my reward is internal. I get an internal satisfaction and pleasure from being a recreational therapist.

Last Wednesday, I read in the paper that there was an unclaimed million dollar lottery ticket. My co-worker, a mental health technician said it wasn’t hers and that she checked her tickets twice just in case. I don’t play, so I know it wasn’t mind.

The school teacher said, “Danny, if you won, you’d still work.” She went on about how I wouldn’t know what I’d do with myself.” She is right. I would still be doing the work I love with or without the money.

Companies are cutting back rewards and other perks for employees due to the economy. They may cut free coffee, free ice, holiday parties, holiday gifts and bonuses. Many times the company is cutting these extra perks to pay for your (the employee) salary. If you had to make a choice between reductions of salary versus a reduction in free coffee, I’d imagine most people would rather keep their salary. However, salaries may be cut, too, in some places.

Here are the five basic tips suggested by Zupek:

a.) “Get over it.” Basically, let it go. Release your negative feelings about it. This reminds me of the book, “The Sedona Method” on letting things go.
b.) “Find motivation.” Seek internal motivation. Think about the real reasons you decided to work at this job.
c.) “Create your own perks.” Bring in a reward for the office. You could bring coffee and doughnuts one day. A different employee could do it the next day.
d.) “Understand what is till being offered.” Be sure to be aware of what perks the company is still offering. Use them.
e.) “Focus on the solution and not the problem.” By taking on this challenge you’ll become a better person (i.e. improving your own skills).

Here is Danny’s 6th suggestion:

Be grateful. This is what I use. No matter what happens at the place I work, I can be grateful for many things. I have a job. I’m glad I get to help children. I’m glad I’ve got several friends at work, I’m glad I live close to my job. I’m glad my job is in my home state. I’m glad I’m building experience. I’m glad for many more things. I think gratitude is the best answer.

Online: Source:

Zupek, R. (November 26, 2009). 5 ways to stay motivated after the perks are gone. Retrieved November from: