If you’re paying attention, you can spot subtle signs in someone’s body that they are operating out of Indirect Motivation– and therefore with a Hidden Agenda. Our body tells the truth about us; it reflects who we are. A person’s body gives us information about their motivations, which we can pick up on both consciously and subconsciously.
We not only pick up information subconsciously, we also react within a split second to the ‘vibes’ we detect, sometimes even before a person speaks. Interpreting our fellow human beings’ body language is part of our survival system.
We know that when people are straightforward with their goals and intentions they look you straight into the eye, and you get a sense of solidity from that. When people are indirectly motivated, they tend to look away, or sometimes there is a look in their eyes one might label as dishonest, cheating, and insecure. The pupils are larger than normal. The color of their eyes might lighten or change slightly.
The overall mode of the person can be very subtly evasive and nervous. When someone is speaking about an activity of theirs which is indirectly motivated, the message won’t be clear, or they won’t have much to say. That’s because their main focus is elsewhere. And that split focus has other consequences.
A split focus affects the results of our actions. The degree of intention that goes into any overt goal-content (‘the vehicle’) of any action is responsible for the degree of success in getting the ordinary desired result of the action. So it’s no wonder that the result of an Indirectly Motivated action is not optimal; the main intent is going toward achieving the Hidden Agenda, not the overt ordinary expected result of such an action.
It’s even worse. Because the Hidden Agenda’s goal is fundamentally the experience of a fictional ‘self’, we could even say that even the effort put into the action goes to waste; it doesn’t contribute to successful achievement of the overt ordinary result.
So if your efforts all-too-often don’t have the desired outcome, it is worthwhile checking your motivation. If 60% of your energy goes into the Hidden Agenda, there is only 40% left for the activity itself, and that 40% is pretty much wasted. Success proves elusive.
It took me a great number of years of practicing like mad on my bassoon while working as a musician in top-class orchestras, before it dawned on me: “I play the way I am.” In other words, I can’t surpass, through practice, the limitations on my skill, knowledge, and success imposed by who I am – including the degree of healthiness/directness of my motivations.
If you have reached a certain level of expertise or success that you have been trying unsuccessfully to surpass, introspect about your motivation. No amount of practice will overcome the handicap of having a Hidden Agenda which is hidden from you. The way you are functioning as a human being determines the ceiling on your expertise or success.
The issue of Direct or Indirect Motivation has been “in my face” the whole time I’ve been working on this website and formulating this Holistic Psychological theory. I have had to continuously remind myself that my life should be directly motivated, ‘about me’, and not indirectly motivated, about ‘writing the website’ to get approval down the road. I would be reminded of my ‘Indirect Motivation’ among others by attacks of anxiety and ‘fear not to be able to function’.
An important awareness is that there is a fine line between dedication and compulsion. Coming from the field of classical music, I know that all too well! Walking that fine line is indeed about continuously finding, re-finding, and maintaining the most healthful balance among time, effort, and motivation. I do Motivation Checks often.
For me setting up this site has been a continuous ‘Growth-opportunity.’ I definitely don’t always like that fact, but I have no choice. If, as a workaholic, I want to do something successfully, I need to be continuously in touch with how I ‘already exist’ and how my sense of existing is ‘not dependent on the outcome of my actions’.
It also is of crucial importance that I write from a healthy (direct) motivation
and that this text is – even on the subtlest of levels created by my motivations – about you and not about me, the author. Otherwise – which you might understand by now – the content will not come across to you as real or important or ‘about you’, no matter how much effort I put into it. You will – subconsciously and even without body language – pick up on it not being geared towards you but towards my own Agenda, which could be something like “Look at me, how good I am! I invented this all myself!”