”Motivation is when you get hold of an idea and carry it through to its conclusion, and inspiration is when an idea gets hold of you and carries you where you are intended to go.”
Dr. Wayne Dyer
The difference between inspiration & motivation: All of us need some motivation and inspiration at some point in time in life. Many people might think that these two disciplines are more or less the same thing, but they are entirely different concepts. While motivation is always from an external source in an external environment, inspiration comes from within.
The term motivation comes from the word ‘motive’ which means the needs or drives within a person. In contrast, inspiration is the process in which an individual is mentally encouraged to do something.
The difference between motivation and inspiration is actually a difference between when you feel you should and when truly want something.
Definition of motivation: Motivation is a psychological concept, which is described as a stimulus or force, that impels people to take an action. It is something that persuades people to behave and act in a particular way. It is also defined as the process of giving a reason to someone to do or achieve something.
Motivation compels us to set our goals, on the basis of the things we feel we should be doing. It involves diverse forces such as psychological, biological, social, etc. that intensifies one’s emotions like needs, desires, hopes – stimulating them to take an action which will result in the achievement of a short-term goal.
Definition of inspiration: The term ‘inspiration’ simply refers to an influencing or arousing process that stimulates people mentally and emotionally, to do something creative or extraordinary. When someone really wants to do something different, the desire of doing it comes from within. The urge is based on the value system, beliefs, life experiences, preferences imaginations, aspirations and similar other sense that makes us feel better if we do or achieve it.
In inspiration, you truly want something for which you have an enduring desire to achieve it, you are continually interested and committed to having it, yo make time for it and makes it your priority. It is a spontaneous impulse.
Key Differences Between Motivation and Inspiration. The difference between motivation and inspiration can be clearly understood by referring to the following points:
- Motivation refers to a process of stimulating someone to act in a definite way to achieve a goal. Inspiration is defined as an act of influencing people mentally and emotionally to do something creative.
- Motivation is something that impels or persuades you to take an action, whereas inspiration is what pulls you towards something.
- There is a sense of resistance and competitiveness in motivation while inspiration has a sense of excitement and effortlessness.
- Motivation is short lived, i.e. suppose you attend a seminar of a great personality, after which you feel excited to do something, but after a specific period of a couple of weeks or days then the urge will start declining. On the other hand, inspiration is enduring in nature, that resides in us and makes us committed until we attain the goal.
- Motivation comes from an external source which can be your reward, recognition, appreciation, etc. Although the source of inspiration is internal, a deep desire which emerges inside us.
- Motivation is a deliberate or planned instinct to take a step. Conversely, in the case of inspiration, that impulse is spontaneous.
- Motivation is due to several reasons like self-imposed or societal expectations, obligations and peer pressure that push us to do something. Unlike inspiration which involves a natural and organic call from deep within us.
Conclusion: After reviewing the above points, now it is clear that these two are very different, but this doesn’t mean that one is ahead of the another. Their relevance can be examined only at the time of need, i.e. motivation is used when you want people to act in a particular manner and act immediately, whereas inspiration is when people want to achieve something great, which will make them better than they are at present.
Below you find a comparison chart for motivation & inspiration:
|Basis for comparison||Motivation||Inspiration|
|Meaning||Motivation refers to a process of stimulating someone to act in a definite way to achieve a goal.||Inspiration is defined as an act of influencing people mentally and emotionally to do something creative.|
|Force||Driving force||Pulling force|
|Sense of||Resistance||Excitement and effortlessness.|
|Impulse to take action||Deliberate||Spontaneous|
|Reason||Self imposed or societal expectations, obligations and peer pressure that pushes us to do something.||Natural calling, which comes from deep inside us.|