4 Key Beliefs That Drive Your Motivation As A Leader


If you’re in a position of leadership, you’ll surely understand some of the challenges that come with managing a diverse group of people. Although, it’s equally as important to understand what motivates you


Leaders with high emotional intelligence understand a fair amount about mental models. Mental models are internal beliefs that greatly influence your thoughts and actions, and they play a notable role in your sense of drive and determination. 


Core beliefs like this are shaped during the course of your life, often by your most monumental, (or your most traumatic) life experiences. As time goes on, they serve as guidelines for the way you make sense of and handle your current and future problems; and they ultimately become the well-versed paths of how you express yourself in social situations.


When you understand what influences your behaviour and what drives your motivation, you’re then consciously able to “rewire” your brain into a more desired mode of thinking or acting. 


In the article that follows, I’ll be focusing on 4 major mental models that influence all behaviour.


  1. Control


Think about the concept of winning vs. losing. Getting your own way in certain situations, having your needs met, and having your desires fully heard and understood are all common themes when we’re being motivated by control. At these moments, our interactions with other people are centred around influencing and using our power to convince them to align with our desired goals and vision. Other people might view strong control tendencies as forceful, confrontational and unreasonable.


  1. Achievement


When you are being motivated by achievement, your focus is centred around solving problems, making progress towards your goals, and resolving clashes between people in an objective and rational fashion. Your relationships and interactions with others are practical, and for the sake of the “greater good”. Others may view strong achievement tendencies as relentless and exhausting, or energy-draining.


  1. Affiliation


If you’re driven by affiliation, it means that relationships to you are treated like gold. You spend your time and energy on ensuring that people are well-satisfied with all interactions that take place — even if this means shifting your own preferences to better suit the needs of other people; or just to avoid conflict. All outcomes are judged and processed by a sense of external validation. Others might perceive affiliation tendencies as a sign of passiveness, detachment, and disengagement.


  1. Security


If security is your main motivator in life, things such as self-protection, risk mitigation, and boundary assertion will influence your behaviour and interactions. For you, trust is something that is earned over time. Until a foundation for this trust has been established, outcomes geared towards protecting the best interests of yourself, your family, your friends, your boss, and others, are hugely important. People who possess dominant traits in this behaviour model are emotionally guarded in nature, and they avoid social activities that cause them stress, disputes and unproductive disagreements. Other people could see these strong security tendencies as elusive, protective, defensive, and purely self-interested.


Mental models act as cognitive scripts that guide you into forming (mostly unconscious) belief statements about who you are, the things that drive other people, and the world at large. 


Possessing a dominant mental model can assist you in thriving in whatever you do, and can often lead you to reach outstanding levels of success. Conversely, though, mental models can also dominate how you make sense of your entire world, as time goes on, they can limit you. In relationships at the workplace or at home, these mental models can turn into weaknesses that inhibit you from reaching your full potential. 

Recent Posts

8 Proven Ways to Build a Winning Team

“Perfect” managers, employees, teams, and partners simply do not exist; but there are some definite keys to top-level management that help bring out the best in each and every person. In order to be a fantastic manager, you need to know when the right time to step in and guide – or discipline – your […]

Read More
No Excuses | Part 2: How to Stop Making Excuses for Good

The first step towards improving your life and getting rid of the terrible habit of constantly making excuses is by acknowledging that you are doing this to yourself.   Once you are aware of this and you accept it as a negative influence over your life, then you can really start making some changes.   […]

Read More
No Excuses | Part 1: The Reasons We make Excuses

When it comes to thinking of excuses, us humans can be immeasurably creative! No doubt we’ve all used them countless times to get ourselves out of situations that might seem difficult and unpleasant; or just anything that might me causing us fear and anxiety.   Sometimes we might use excuses simply because we don’t want […]

Read More
Train Your Brain: 10 Mental Exercises to Shift Your Mindset and Embrace Change

If there’s one thing that is inevitable, it’s change. That said, accepting change – and learning to anticipate it – proves to be a massive mental hurdle for many business owners as their  companies, customers, and market all inevitably change over time.   All is not lost, though! You can, in fact, train your brain […]

Read More