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motivation vs inspiration

Many self-help books offer motivation — you can lose weight, get organized, nail the interview, raise your EQ.  Basically, you can do anything you want, if you’re motivated.

Motivation is important, but in my opinion, it tends to be short-lived.  We motivate people towards goals.  Coaches motivate players to execute plays.  Directors motivate actors to perform.  When action is needed, motivation helps.

Inspiration, on the other hand, is about asking people to tap into their noblest aspirations and dreams.  It’s challenging them to take action without the promise of immediate (or even eventual) reward.  It’s simply the right thing to do.  Inspiration offers satisfaction of an internal kind.

Motivation may move people in a specific direction.  Inspiration may change them for the rest of their life.