21DJC Day 9 – What Drives You?

This is Day 9 of the 21-Day Journaling Challenge (21DJC) for Nov 2011. View list of tasks: 21DJC Overview.

Hi everyone – Welcome to Day 9 of 21DJC! :)

Yesterday’s question was: “On a Scale of 1-10, How Much Do You Love Yourself?“. (Read the responses.)

Self-love is such a tricky topic. Do you love yourself? How much do you love yourself?

The modern society has taught us to be unhappy with ourselves. That we’re not thin enough, not toned enough, not muscular enough, not attractive enough, not rich enough, not smart enough, not skilled enough, not successful enough, not accomplished enough, not well-known enough – and what have you.

Because of that, feelings of self loathe become embedded in us, subconsciously. Our journey through life then becomes a process where we reverse what we were conditioned with since young; where we discover who we are on the inside; where we evolve into our ideal selves.

I’ve come quite a long way where self-love is concerned. In the past, I really hated myself. I was emotionally stingy, I was judgmental, I was critical – I was basically difficult to be around. I didn’t even like me – there were often times when I felt that I could never stand it if I ever had to be around someone who had the exact personality as mine. I didn’t realize it then, but looking back, my self-love was probably in the negative range.

It’s been a few years, but I’ve worked on becoming a better person since then, and I’m a lot more at peace with who I am today. I think I’m still far from being my ideal self, and there’s a lot I need to work on, but I appreciate myself a lot more than I used to.

I believe being a better person is a journey and not an end point. By constantly growing, it helps me to become a better person day after day, which in turn makes me appreciate myself more. If there’s ever anything I don’t like about myself, I’ll reflect on it, develop my desired traits, and shed off the undesirable ones. I believe I’m on the right path, and in time to come I’ll achieve the same level of unconditional, self-love which my higher self has for me.

With that said, let’s now move to today’s question!

21DJC Day 9

On Day 6, you answered the question: What Frustrates You?. Today, I’d like to invite you to think about something different:

What Drives You?

What Drives You?

What drives you in life? What do you live for? What are the times when you feel charged up and ready to take on the world? And why?

(Today’s question can be found in #77 of 101 Important Questions To Ask Yourself In Life.)

Put on your reflection cap and let your thoughts flow. Below is an empty form which you can use to write your answers to the question. Treat it as your private 21DJC journaling “room”, if you will. You will be seeing this form every day, for the 21 days of the challenge. There’s a button for you to keep track of your word count too, if you’re interested.

(Note you will not see the form below if you’re viewing this in your email client. Visit the actual post online to see the form.)

What Drives You?

Your Task Today:

  1. Reflect and answer today’s question. There’s no word limit – whether minimum or maximum. Write as few or as many words as you want. It’s all up to what you want to express!
  2. Share your answer. After you are done writing, copy and paste your answer in the comments area and post it there.
  3. Check out other participants’ answers. Other participants will be sharing their answers too, so feel free to read and reply to their answers. This is a group course, so let’s support each other in these 21 days.
Look forward to reading your answers! :D

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« 21DJC Day 8 – On a Scale of 1-10, How Much Do You Love Yourself?

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173 Responses | Share Your Results!

  1. Glenn says:

    What drives me.

    This may sound a bit abstract, but I believe I am driven by all the positive energy around me. And this encompasses so much. It could be the people I choose to connect with the most, either in the real world or online, music I listen to, books and articles I read, the creative work of artists who inspire me, the food I eat, bright sunny days, or even nature itself, including all plants and animals.

    In contrast, negative energy can be distracting. If I encounter a person with a negative attitude for example, my interaction with that person can easily distract me from the most important things I need to be doing at any moment in time. I may start to question what made the person become like that, or what I can do to help them? But sadly in most cases that would only waste my time. If they’re unable to believe in them self or choose to seek advice, then there’s not much I can really do to help them.

    So as much as possible I will focus on what inspires me the most, and use that positive energy to keep me going strong. Right now, I am really looking forward to a slightly late breakfast of freshly squeezed orange juice and a couple of mangoes. The kind of foods that make me feel alive and will drive me for at least two or three hours.

    Like: Thumb up +12

    • Vanessa says:

      Postive energy from others helps lighten my mood and drives me as well. There is a lot of postive energy on this blog.

      Like: Thumb up +8

    • Lavanya says:

      Hi Glenn, Your posts are always very intuitive, well composed, and such an easy flow to follow. For some of the questions when my mind is confused or thinking a lots of things in an incoordinated way your posts always helps in streamlining.


      Like: Thumb up +3

      • Glenn says:

        Hello Lavanya, many thanks for your reply here. This is definitely among the best feedback I’ve received in quite some time :) To be honest, I’ve never had much confidence in my writing ability, but it seems that having to write daily journals for this challenge has helped me a lot already. Both in my writing ability, and in conveying my thoughts.

        Like: Thumb up +1

        • Anjali says:

          Even, i agree with Lavanya, you have written it so well and made it easy for others to express them as well.

          I also feel that the time i spent with negative people brings my energy levels down and leave me quite irritated. So i try to kind of avoid them, which is not always possible, so try to keep the conversation very short with them.

          I try to look for positive things and as you said, small little things drives me as well. I feel high by the early morning silence, enjoying nature, having good food, spending time with my near and dear ones and some nice people :-)


          Like: Thumb up +2

          • Glenn says:

            Thanks Anjali :)

            Yes, so true about negative people. Recently on facebook I decided to hide all the people who would continually post negative status updates, mostly complaining about different things. I was never a big fan of facebook, but hiding those people has actually made it more enjoyable to read.

            And the small things too, like you said. Sadly a lot of people take these things for granted. I can sit on the grass and find enjoyment from just watching a tiny bug crawling around and going about it’s business :)

            Like: Thumb up +1

  2. Laurel says:

    I read once that being “driven” isn’t the best word to use because it implies fear, and instead we should follow what “pulls” us, a love based motivation. This is how I view my present life, and, I think, the spirit of this question.

    The most obvious motivation that comes to my mind is my horses. Supporting them and giving them the good life is what gets me out of bed, going to work, and pursuing my education.

    Besides my horses, the pull to do good things for my mother motivates me. I like to do whatever I can for her to repay, at least in part, all the unconditional love and support she has given me.

    Also, I am motivated by the community, all the people, animals, and the environment I come in contact with whether directly, indirectly, or electronically. I feel very strongly motivated to be a positive force in the world I live in, and Gandhi’s quote: “Be the change you wish to see in the world” is like my personal mantra.

    So I guess my biggest pull/drive of all, is to be my best self, which can only come by doing right by others.

    Like: Thumb up +7

  3. alix says:

    Its hard to fully understand this aspect of myself. I live for understanding, myself and the world. There is so many questions I have regarding so many things. When I feel hopeful about my future I feel invincible.

    Like: Thumb up +2

  4. May says:

    What drives me? I think inspirational people drive me the most. Music (along with the lyrics if there are any) can also drive me.

    Usually when I see someone’s talent (tv, live, it doesn’t matter), it gives me motivation. I start to think: if that person can do so well in what he/she does in life, why shouldn’t I give it a try? They start to inspire me and I start to look up to them, a lot. Whenever I feel like that energy goes away, I “recharge” by rewatching videos online, etc.

    Music wise, some lyrics are really inspiring, and that makes me want to change for the better.

    Inspiration and music combined is the greatest way to drive me and let me become “the greatest person in the world”, or at least, in my head ;)

    Like: Thumb up +4

  5. lotusbleu says:

    By what matters most. By knowing what I do makes a (good) difference in others’ lives. By emerging as a better person at the end of it.

    Like: Thumb up +5

  6. Peggy says:

    Love. Joy. Those are my driving forces. The times I feel charged up and ready to take on the world are when I’m well rested and low stress times. Sleep/rest recharges me and them I’m ready for anything. Bring it on.

    Like: Thumb up +1

  7. J says:

    I’ll pull a Tony Robbins and say that we’re all driven by pain and pleasure. But b/c the question seems to focus on the positive motivators, that’s where I’ll aim my answer.

    Daily Drivers

    On a daily basis, I’m driven by a sense of accomplishment and the urge to maintain and grow the life I’ve crafted, or, from a different perspective, that I’ve built with God looking and working over my shoulder. It’s fun to see your little daily advances compound into big opportunities… to look back and see that I’m becoming a better person as the months and years go by. Years ago, I wouldn’t have appreciated the power of these habits, of leading a well-designed lifestyle in the little ways, of improving yourself from the inside out. But I do now. And it drives me.

    For one daily “pain” motivator, I’m trying to introduce more “positive” peer pressure.

    “The wise man will want to be ever with him who is better than himself.”
    - Plato

    Life-fulfillment Drivers

    This is where outside-in forces meet deep inside desires for me. My daily habits are great — they move me along automatically, and that’s more powerful than you might think. But they’re all very controlled. It’s fun and makes a great growing experience to get in over your head from time to time. My big-ticket motivation is to reach the highest possible “wavelength” of thought for the longest time I can. That’s being my best self. In theory, I could just do this in a blank room, but I find that “crutches” — being around inspiring people, traveling, reading interesting thoughts of others, etc. — help. So this is what I want, and what I know is good for me, but it’s not as big a driver in an everyday sense as I’d like because I seldom get my mind out of the everyday places for long enough to think higher thoughts.

    I feel most charged when I have “bridge” moments — when a catalyst brings some of that higher-level thinking into my brain (or my brain up to that level), and I’m suddenly able to think more clearly, to make breakthroughs in understanding math equations, doing brainteasers, writing, etc. I feel like I put my brain on a higher-functioning wavelength, and, for the moment, technically become a smarter human being. If only I could do it more often :)

    Like: Thumb up +7

    • Celes says:

      Hey J! I hear you regarding Tony Robbin’s theory on how people are motivated by either pain or pleasure. At the same time, I would like to add my 2 cents here that the things we are motivated by are linked to our consciousness level. People who are in fear-based consciousness tend to be primarily motivated by pain / fear-based factors. For example, someone in the consciousness level of “pride” will be motivated by ego-related pursuits, such as material exhibitions of wealth, status symbols, extrinsic labels, and so on.

      On the other hand, people who are in love-based consciousness are primarily motivated by love-based factors. For example, someone in the consciousness level of “willingness” will be motivated by desire for betterment and growth. Someone in the consciousness level of “love” will be motivated by desire to unconditionally help others and see them in a better place. Ultimately, I earnestly believe that at our highest state, at our highest consciousness level, we will be motivated by solely love and light, and fear/pain will play no role in our life. That’s also what it means to be in the state of enlightenment.

      More on consciousness levels here: http://personalexcellence.co/blog/map-of-consciousness/ (Love-based consciousness refers to the levels under “Power”, while fear-based consciousness refers to levels under “Force”.)

      Like: Thumb up +8

      • Bob says:

        Interesting, my thoughts are that in a higher conscious state we will not be affected by fear/pain although this might happen to us ie. the death of a loved one. Because we have learned to understand and control what we want to feel and think. I think there will be always moments where they could be fear/pain but we will emotionally detach ourselves from it.

        Like: Thumb up +2

      • J says:

        Hi Celes :)

        Interesting article — I had not seen it before. Thanks for linking to it, and for the shout-out.

        I actually see both frameworks as remaining consonant simply because Tony’s applies so broadly (i.e., on an action level, vs. a consciousness level). I may have complicated things by injecting it into your post on drive, which deals with higher motivation.

        For example, this morning, I drank water, used the toilet, and showered. I didn’t do them out of either fear or love, and my level of consciousness didn’t matter, aside from being just generally awake. I did them out of habit, as we all do, but those habits were formed to prevent us from feeling the pain of thirst or headache, the “pain” of feeling smelly and offensive to peers, etc.

        Simple point. Now let’s ratchet things up.

        Having only peeked at your David Hawkins post (so far — I’ll read it thoroughly :)), my instinct is to say that it’s useful, but that I prefer the genuineness of your own overlay to his pseudo-precision and embedded judgmentalness. His graph misses a dimension: that higher and lower versions of pain and pleasure are still orbiting at all levels of consciousness; in fact, they define them.

        Mother Theresa’s diary shows that she struggled horrifically throughout life. Alongside making massive contribution, she fought massively negative forces inside:

        “I have no Faith – I dare not utter the words & thoughts that crowd in my heart – & make me suffer untold agony”

        “repulsed empty no faith no love no zeal”

        (quotes from her letters, cited in a Beliefnet article)

        In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus exclaimed, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death.” And he suffered similarly on the cross, depending on which Gospel you cite.

        I don’t think Hawkins’ implications of a pain-free enlightenment hold up to this reality.

        We all suffer pain and pleasure; higher-conscious people just channel higher forces, which gives them the ability to channel higher versions of each. We most remember world-changes for their positive contributions, but many, if not most, have gone through hell in private. So I’d see level of consciousness as one dimension, and whether we’re a positive or negative embodiment of that level as another.

        Thanks for the interaction. Haven’t thought like this in years.

        Take care :)

        Like: Thumb up +1

  8. cloudio says:

    I am much less idealist than I used to be.
    This also mean there are less things that drives me and I live for, and this forces are weaker.

    For something I am just desinchated, if not resigned.
    Being 40 I know I’ll never be a football player and the window for procreate is closing.

    Sounds depressing, but getting rid of illusions is the path that get you closer the truth.

    And these days, while I still have many projects, I just live trying to be open to whatever life offers to me.

    What drives me is the willing to learn.

    Like: Thumb up +4

    • Asni says:

      Hey Claudio,

      Cheer up!

      40 is just a number. Many presidents of the world are above 40, do you know?

      Many women above the age of 40 are giving birth nowadays. As for men, well, I’ve read of many men who became fathers at the age of 60 and beyond. So, you are not late at all.

      In fact, 40 is the prime of life. You’ve gone through so much in your life and you know what works and what don’t by now.

      Your positive attitude to be opened to learning is wonderful, Claudio!

      I want to reply this to you just to cheer you up. There’s so much waiting for you out there. Think of all the possibilities! Above all, be happy!

      Like: Thumb up +4

  9. aileen says:

    The desire to make an impact on the world drives me. If I am not fully expressing myself uniquely in a way that makes the better place, I am wasting my time. And, time is running out with every second. Who knows how long I will live?

    I suppose a fear of death drives me.
    A fear of living an unremarkable life.
    A fear of being boring (or bored).
    Of course, the fear of being poor and homeless keeps me working!

    I wish I was motivated by more positive things other than fear!

    Like: Thumb up +3

  10. Megan says:

    This is an interesting question. My answer is when I have this sense of love, faith, charity, hope, worthiness, trust, commitment, respect and dignity responding to my own belief, self-satisfaction/growth, personal dignity & integrity, and from other’s confidence towards me.
    Above all, what drives most is I am so inspired by God to do His Will with the help of all the angels and saints, through Our Blessed Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ. Amen.

    Like: Thumb up +2

  11. Mirna says:

    What drives me is making a difference. It’s doing something that I know will benefit many and it would help change their lives.
    It’s waking up and knowing that my life impacts many others in a special way.
    Also, it’s the adventure of life and how we set out to discover all the diffent facets of our being, and creating a world that reflects who we are.

    Like: Thumb up +3

  12. Opal says:

    I am driven knowing that I made a difference in someones life today . I am a nurse . I am driven to go and care for those I care for . the elderly need me . May this day I am the only one who hugged them or stopped to talk to them , I want to feel a sense of “job well done “when I get home . I am driven to help some one less fortunate then me . again to make a difference in anothers life , even if it is just for today .

    Like: Thumb up +4

  13. Asni says:

    I’ve never given a thought to this actually. But I know it’s deep inside, somewhere, of me.

    I’m thinking of many things that can drive me. Let’s list them here so that I can remain clear to myself, at least:-

    * family
    * friends
    * positive / inspiring people
    * inspiring quotes
    * inspiring books
    * money so that I can pay my bills on time and provide for those who depend on me.

    Nah, those are just outside of myself – external forces. I’m thinking about it as I write these words and one big, giant, thought that came to me is — LOVE.

    All my life, from childhood to now, LOVE is the driving force behind all that I do. Love for my family, my friends, my country, my work, my home, all beings including the animals and the trees and the rest of the planet, myself and above all, God. And, vice versa, the love that I receive in return — wow, there’s magic in there! It’s enough to make the world go round!

    There, that’s the major driving force behind all that I do — why I wake up every morning, why I go to work every morning, seeing the love in all the children’s faces in my school, coming home after work and cooking dinner even though my body and brain may be exhausted and would just love to put my feet up in front of the TV or lazing somewhere under the palm tree in some resort island by the sea!

    :heart: Love is what drives me. :heart:

    Like: Thumb up +8

  14. Connie says:

    Sometimes pleasure, sometimes pain. I am either moving toward something or away from something. I have been career driven my whole life. Now, I am driven wanting peace and the ability to say, “this right here, right now is enough.”

    Like: Thumb up +3

  15. Viole says:


    Love for family, love for self, love for the love of my life, love for the things I do

    I am not one whom others will say I am enthusiastic or engrossed into things. There are times when I totally focus on something such as project report, chasing for task to be completed and finishing it before deadline, going after some goals like saving XX amount of money by when…

    I am driven when I give myself some goals and force myself to focus on it and follow through to completion, not allowing myself to give up.

    I am driven when I feel appreciated and loved. I am driven to love more when I get positive feedback from my loved ones.

    Driven because I know I will gain satisfaction in the end

    Like: Thumb up +3


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