On 5th September 2017, UEH Connected held a workshop on the topic “Learn Self-motivation from Successful CEO”, which was presented by Mr. Rick Yvanovich, the well-known and respected CEO of TRG International.


Before getting any further, let us take in the definition of “motivation” and “self-motivation”.

– Motivation: The desire or willingness of someone to do something.

– Self-motivation: The intrinsic force that drives you to do something.

Mr. Yvanovich pointed out that having “self-motivation” not only helps us grow ourselves but it also provides us with improved performance at the workplace. A group project is a disaster if no one has the will to do their job, yet it can turn out to be a fun and so much less stressful one if everyone is motivated.

  1. Self-confidence/Self-efficacy
  • Self-confidence: The trust in yourself and your abilities.
  • Self-efficacy: A belief in our own ability to succeed.
  • Yvanovich stated that most of us are confident in our own skills and abilities to do something, yet we struggle to think that we could actually be successful when applying those skills to do things we want. “So the key thing here is to believe in yourself. That is the most important thing. Because if you don’t believe in yourself, why should anyone else?”,stated Mr. Yvanovich. He also reminded us that our own self is the only thing we could totally rely on.

In order to help the audiences understand the first key element better, Mr. Yvanovich assigned them 2 small exercises, which he named “Likable me” and “Likeable you”.

The point of this activity was to help us give positive feedbacks. We all crave positive recognition, which builds up our self-confidence.

  1. Positive Thinking/Positive Future Thinking:

“Every thought we think is creating our future”, said the CEO, and this leads to the second key idea: training yourself into having a good habit of thinking positively, following 6 steps bellow:

  • Write down your thoughts throughout the day: Be aware (mindful) of your thoughts. Keeping tracks of what is on your mind helps you spot a negative one right when it is formed.
  • Challenge negative thoughts: Now you know that there is a thought that probably does not do you any good. But where did it come from and why was it even formed in the first place? Finding out the source of negative thoughts puts you in the control position of changing them.
  • Replace them with positive thoughts: Now that you are aware of your negative thoughts and want to replace them with positive ones:

Mr. Yvanovich set out an instance as followed to help us with this step: when you are freaked out in an exam, thinking you are going to fail because you did not review any lesson that day — well, think differently. You have been studying hard the whole course, did that extra homework last week and did take a quick look at your textbook right before the exam started, so you are going to do alright.

  • Visualize yourself achieving the goals: This helps, a lot! Believe in yourself and you will make it.
  • Develop affirmation: Once you have done something good, give yourself credits.
  • Repeat the affirmation: And you do that again, again and again. Make it become a habit, something you do every day (like brushing your teeth). Make it become a natural thing to do — you do it without having to think you have to do it.

The 6 steps listed above are to help us train ourselves the habit of self-motivation, to make it become a thing we do subconsciously — where we no longer need to think about it, we just do it.

Practice positive thinking until you AUTOMATICALLY think about yourself and the world in a positive way, EVERY DAY

  1. Strong Goals and Focus:


Mr. Yvanovich asked the audiences if they had set goals for themselves and if their goals were written down on a piece of paper. He then told us about a statistic: The top 5% people in the world wrote down their goals — since those who wrote down their goals, typically achieved them and vice versa.

Besides, writing your goals down does have some beneficial effects, such as:

– Giving yourself a clear direction — Knowing where you are going, what you are aiming for.

– Creating a promise, which you want to keep, with yourself.

– Challenging yourself which makes it fun.

  • The power of focus:

Most of us carry in our mind a to-do list, don’t we? It is sure that the number of things needs to be done varies from one list to another. But what is the optimum number of things to so that all things in the list can be done?

  • From 1 to 3: all can easily be achieved.
  • From 4 to 10: usually only 1 to 2 things are done.
  • From 11 to 22: nothing.

Why? According to Mr. Yvanovich, it is all about “focus”. We are not multi-taskers. We only switch from one task to another task. “You should focus on a few things and actually achieve them, rather than focus on everything and achieve nothing”, advised the CEO.

  1. A Motivating Environment:

Although self-motivation is something that comes from within ourselves, we cannot deny the fact that sometimes external forces play a huge role in helping us achieve our goals. Therefore, the CEO provided us with some pieces of advice on how to benefit from the extrinsic factors:

– Surround yourself with people and resources that will remind you of your goals and help you with your internal motivation.

– Seek out other people who model the competencies, skills, and attributes you desire.

– Seek out mentors: an expert who is willing to help you grow.

Also, there is one more thing you can take as a life lesson:

You cannot change the people around you, but you can change the people you choose to be around

As the CEO approached the end of his presentation, he shared with us one thing out of his own secret formula in how to self-motivate. “Some things are very easy to do, and some things — that same things, are easy not to do (…). Life is a series of choices, and all we have to do is consistently pick the right ones. That’s it. It’s very easy, it’s very simple, and it’s really really hard to do it”.

Self-motivation has always been the key source which drives us to keep picking ourselves up every time we fall down, when we are tired and exhausted, when we feel like we cannot get the goals we have set. The workshop event held by UEH Connected — with the generous help from the successful CEO, Rick Yvanovich — has provided us with useful information and tips on how to keep ourselves motivated. We hope that you have gained yourself some valuable.



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