What Motivates You?

Have you ever identified your motivators? You know, why do you do what you do?


This is an interesting exercise, and I’m always surprised, sometimes disappointed, and often encouraged when I figure out what compels me. For example, why do you work? Some common answers might be:


  1. Need to pay bills
  2. Love of what you do
  3. You’d be bored if you didn’t
  4. Not many other opportunities — you take what you can get when it comes to work


While there might be hundreds of answers to the question (or to any question involving our intention behind an action: Why do you parent the way you do? why do you study? why do you work on your marriage? etc…), I believe there are three fundamental truths, one of which is at the heart of your answer. Which do you think most applies to you?


  1. Fear: I make choices because I’m afraid of the other options
  2. Status Quo: I choose to not make waves, living as much like everyone else as I can
  3. Faith: I make choices based on who God made me to be, trusting Him with every decision


When your decisions are based on fear, you will be full of anxiety and doubt. You cannot live Overboard when you are worried about what might happen, or how things could turn out if… In Matthew 14, when Peter stepped out of the boat and walked on water, he was living miraculously…until the fear of the water made him sink. Ironically, making decisions out of the fear of failing, always leads to failing. You cannot please God when choices are made from fear (Romans 14:23).


Decisions based on the status quo are equally destructive. When you look around and choose to not make waves, you will usually succeed. But without waves, nothing ever changes. Status quo people get to the end of their lives and wish they had lived outside the box, wished they had dared to chase their dreams instead of stuffing them into little boxes and taping them shut.


However, when choices are based in faith, lives are changed. Faith allows us to make educational choices that are best for our kids — not less worse than the other available options. Faith allows us to see the needs of others, and creatively find solutions to meet them. Faith empowers us to live according to our unique God-given design, not to be bound by social and cultural “norms.” Faith inspires. Faith turns everyday events into meaningful interactions. Faith brings joy. Faith can endure life-altering, routine-shattering events. Faith endures. Faith is at the heart of the Overboard Life.


Are you motivated by fear? Are you living life by default? Or are you inspiring others through faith? In the comments, tell us what has helped you to live more frequently by faith.


Go ahead and take the plunge, life is better on the water!

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2 Responses to What Motivates You?

  1. kendra says:

    I still face the temptation to make decisions based on fear but am learning to pray and take action when God asks me to even if it doesnt make sense to others, may upset them, or may allow me to fall on my face and mess up. But I know God will help me get back up if He is the one that asked me to take that step in the first place:)

    • joeacast says:

      Fear is such an easy default for choices…rising up to faith however is what makes the difference! Keep growing Kendra, and thanks for sharing your journey with us!

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