How to Be Motivated by Desperation

Are you desperate enough to become what you want to be? Decide on a big goal that is worthy of lots of effort. Let thoughts of near desperation motivate you to be -- or figure out how to become -- hopeful (actuated by a feeling of hopelessness, a need). How can you get the urgency to "go-all-in" to stand up for your higher purpose, for family, friends, team and yourself -- if not here and now, then where and when?


  1. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 1
    "Check-yourself" daily, to develop the needed vision, like a personal map or game plan, developing leading-edge skills. Maintain enough goal driven purpose, by a sense of desperation to do more than most others will bother to do -- but, you can and should "bother" to do more -- how? Accept your need for a strong desire, being empowered by loving what you do, doing what you should: "not just 'desperate for attention' ".
    • Suspend immediate gratification (avoid selfishness). Get the needed information. Do the work. Become desperate to always be progressing, making and fulfilling goals, getting smarter (one success leads to another) and better (compared to yourself). Success breeds success.
  2. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 2
    Be afraid to not support (and so let down) your family, team members, company and/or customers. Make your important (bold) efforts each minute, hour and day to use the sense of desperation for energy; not for vanity -- not just for test day, observation, inspection or closing day.
    • Be prepared for the next goal and always improving, "joyfully". Be worthy of promotion or of good grades, etc.
    • Commit your ways to do your worthwhile goals. Do not live for selfish motives.
    • Love what you do, do well, loving others, showing reasonable and meaningful kindness, true affection, not selfishness.
    • Be desperate enough to "load-up" with energy -- by not just giving your best but doing at least one thing better than anyone else.
  3. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 3
    Be confident. But, more importantly be intense (like white knuckles, but not necessarily both fists clinched) when needed; don't panic. Relax as much as possible between intense bursts of purposeful energy. Take short breaks, to rest, take deep breaths to relax and have moments of refreshing.
  4. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 4
    Ask yourself: What new training or goal will energize me, and inspire me to keep loving it, and going forward? Decide: "Yes! I can make my own chance..." Make your own luck! Refuse to compromise when getting training and adjusting your attitudes to do right (accept responsibility).
    • How can I get going in my desired field, make a great success -- if I "loll away" time. La La, Twiddle-dee-dumb? You can't.
  5. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 5
    Become more relevant; fill a need (work to be the head, brain or heart, not the tail or little toe). Be on point -- ahead of the the under-motivated middle of the crowd. Hopefully you won't hear, "I'm proud of you", and/or "impressed with what you're doing", B-U-T, but "No, we're promoting by seniority" (moving another person up -- not for better work but for only being there longer). Yet, if you do hear that, don't back off or give up. Work smarter and concentrate on learning and demonstrating your quality.
  6. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 6
    Be the learner and worker who achieves your step by step goals, nice and easy by getting prepared, loving your opportunity and seizing it. Be the one who applies what you learn learning the way and speaking the truth to help others as well as yourself. Don't be rounding out the also-ran (stragglers) who do less, or do nothing. Get smarter, better. Be the first one off the bench, if you can't be on the first-team as a starter.
    • Help someone who wants help and is willing to apply oneself. Share your knowledge. But, don't waste time on lazy, silly or dishonest students or fellow workers -- or those who don't need (or want) your assistance.
    • Ask your questions, being faithful to your goals. The only dumb question is the one you don't ask -- when you need to know the answer.
    • Get good information. Research, practice and remember what you learn.
    • Be enthusiastic and determined to go forward.
  7. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 7
    Be positive. Show the winning attitude. Seize the moment and never let go of your "I get-it!" and "I can do it!" attitude. Cooperate where that's called for.
    • Find ways to serve your teams' or customers' needs to get a sale or earn a customers loyalty. Build relationships. Love your family, friends, team, customers, etc. Don't take advantage of others weakness for selfish gain. Strengthen one another. Show them how to do what they want in a better way. Don't waste time trying to use false hopes or lies.
  8. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 8
    Find better ways to solve problems. Be organized. Work smarter (not just harder) than ever.
    • Try good, newer, or better ideas. Do it appropriately.
    • Get the right tools to get things done better and/or sooner.
  9. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 9
    Help by engaging others by their own self interest, by their own purposeful sense of desperation. Keep smart and purposeful people around you.
  10. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 10
    Don't be a dictator, except to yourself (kick it up a notch).
    • Force? Never force others to do what you need (or want them to do). Don't twist arms, and torment... that's terrorism. Be kind, nice and not intimidated by another's success.
  11. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 11
    Go into "emergency" action. Yet, don't be up-tight, too anxious. Have a reasonable sense of desperation -- in daily life, in business, or active competitive sport.
    • Keep up your intense training regimen, which is unlike anything anybody else is doing.
    • Devise all kinds of scenarios and practice making every effort imaginable.
  12. Image titled Be Motivated by Desperation Step 12
    Be persistent to actualize your goals. Achieve by overcoming complacency (doing and caring more)... Be actuated by a feeling of near failure/hopelessness (but find and keep "new hope" by staying involved and solving the problem).
    • Time? Avoid age or time traps: bosses often promote persons with more seniority (one who has been there) and longevity (which is not necessarily worthwhile "experience"). Get noticed doing great or someone else may do it. Be an "overcomer"... overcome the odds.
    • Move? You might need to transfer to a different department or change to a new company where management may be eager for your clear abilities and polished talents to help them advance. Do it.


  • No matter how happy you get, the way to maintain success is to hold onto your sense of need and desperation that got you to the top in the first place, loving what you can offer.
  • Save some money for the future. Pay yourself by laying some aside. Maintain it.


  • When just going along, feeling comfortable where you are; then you find others -- who are more curious and have that sense of desperation -- and then watching them pass on by. No! Let them see you passing... leading or innovating.
  • Do not be like a loss cannon, rolling on the deck of a ship. Be sure and stable.
  • If your great effort is a bust/going for broke (you broke it?), you might be taking a bus back home instead of getting on the plane with the others on your team (So, you will always try again...).

Sources and Citations

  • Partially based on -- titled "Where’s Your Sense of Desperation?" by Fran Tarkenton -- column called "In The Huddle with Fran Tarkenton", posted 09/19/2014,

Article Info

Categories: Building and Maintaining Self Confidence