Internal Rewards and External Rewards

What inspires you to follow your dreams? Everything we do in life, we do for rewards. Reward is anything given in recognition of service, effort, or achievement. There are two kinds of rewards: Internal Rewards and External Rewards.

External Rewards

An external or extrinsic reward comes from external source. It may be some prize, medal, trophy, certificate, or money.

Internal Rewards

An internal or intrinsic reward is what you experience internally. It is sense of achievement from with-in. It is experiencing the satisfaction comes from your own actions.

What is the biggest motivation in your life: Internal Rewards or External Rewards? Unfortunately, most of us run after external rewards.

How External rewards drives our life:

Today if we want to pursue our dream, hobby, or profession, we first check it on the parameter of external rewards. Can I earn more in any other profession? Are there enough opportunities to get recognition in this? Will I have a secure future and allowance in this field?

Suppose you are earning well as an engineer. Meanwhile you found that you can cook well and you enjoy cooking more than your engineering. Now you may have an alternative for your profession. However, before pursuing, you first look for same external reward as you are getting in engineering.

As you are already in a well-settled profession, you will not try to come out of your comfortable zone. This is how pressure of external rewards limits our life. No matter how good we are in singing, writing, or playing, we do not think them as a profession.

Importance of Internal Rewards

Most of us want to be successful by earning money and fame. Sometimes we achieve almost everything in life but still find that something is missing. This happens when our life is full of external reward but lack of internal reward.

If your profession motivated primarily by external incentive, you will struggle for lifelong satisfaction. Whatever you do in life, first do it for yourself. You know what makes you happy. You know what is close to your heart. Always follow your heart.

“If you do not love what you are doing, you simply wasting your life.”

External Rewards follows Internal Rewards:

In the beginning of any profession, our focus should be on Internal Rewards. We should focus on learning, self-exploration and joy. When you follow your dreams motivated by internal rewards, external rewards follow. You will get more than what you think.

“Don’t aim for success if you want it; just do what you love and believe in, and it will come naturally. ~ David Frost

Happiness is big Reward:

Life is a journey. What is the fun reaching a destination if you do not enjoy journey at all. Your dream or your goal or even your profession should be something that inspires you within. Then life will be a fun ride.

“If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.” ~ Marc Anthony

We all have at least one thing that we just love doing for ourselves. It may be playing a sport. It may be singing. May be you write just because you love to do it. We do these things even if they do not bring us any external rewards.

We should never stop doing it just because it will not get you anywhere professionally. Dig yourself. Keep doing what makes you happy, as happiness is big reward.

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Deepak Rajpal

Deepak Rajpal is a Motivational Author, and founder of VisionShine.com. He lives in New Delhi, a beautiful capital of India. He contributes to several other blogs as well. He is also a Software Engineer expert in WordPress development. To know more about him, you can please visit DeepakRajpal.com

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2 Responses

  1. Yatin says:

    Deepak, such a wonderful post. You are right. We must look out for internal awards. To me, external rewards are illusions designed by the society. Due to this trap, we are not able to come out in a free manner. Thanks for sharing your great thoughts

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