How to motivate the demotivated or misguided people

We often come across people who have no hope in their lives. That is exactly what they think. But it is not at all true. There is always hope and there are alternatives. This affects both men and women. Some nuances of helping such people find their calling or their ways of going ahead in their lives is sought to be discussed in this article.


There are people who are totally misguided by either their own parents or by their peers in their careers. There are some who are very passionate about something but totally forget that or are unable to even fathom what that particular passion is. Or how to go about maximizing opportunities to get that passion to work for them. In each of these cases, it is relevant to a) Encourage a total catharsis b) Involve significant others in counseling c) Highlight their strengths and counsel for avenues to maximize them d) Arrange for support e) Constantly talk about achievers and their hard work.

Encourage a total catharsis

Catharsis is the process where a person lets out his or her emotions totally. He or she should be allowed to be at total ease in a one hundred percent silent environment where only the person is present. The process is relevant only when the person trusts the expert who would like to counsel him or her. Hence, this is best done after the initial rapport is through and the person is able to open up.

There is not much of a need to take the help of professional counselors who charge more than Rs.1000 for a 25-minute session. Even those with a little background in psychology can do it. This author had one such opportunity some weeks ago. The boy was just fourteen years old. His father was a painter who earned Rs.500 per day. But the problem was that the work was not regular. His mother did some cooking in a few houses on a part-time basis and earned around Rs.5000 per month. The father also regularly took to booze. His only source of good emotional support was his elder sister, who would stitch shirts and pants for children and earn money as well. She was into the first year of college. His mother had a horrible time with her husband. The boy fell in love with a girl in the same locality. However, when the girl's family came to know about it, the boy was thrashed black and blue. The girl still wanted to talk to him. She was beaten up too.

At this point in time, the boy was totally confused. This allowed a total catharsis. It turned out that his sister's classmate was the brother of the girl. So, she knew the family well. Her help was sought to diffuse the tension. The girl's family relocated to a place ten kilometers away. The boy was advised to concentrate only on his studies and do all the hard work. His sister hugged him in this author's presence, promising that she would give him all the support. It turned out that this girl was able to support the entire counseling process. The boy gradually started understanding that there is much more to achieve in life. He was good at dancing and won a prize in a local competition. His life changed for the better, thanks to his elder sister. A total catharsis revealed that the boy loved his sister so much. This clue was useful in taking the constructive action.

The motivation does seem to work. The boy met with this author a few days ago and said that his plan was to go over to Chennai to take up tuition classes for the IIT coaching with his friend.

Involve significant others in counseling

In the very recent past, there has been a big churn in the IT companies. For cost-cutting, the employers are throwing out people who are around 40 to 43 years old. These guys have big EMIs that become very difficult to manage. In one recent case, the man was not able to digest that his wife, another IT professional, was safe in her job when he lost his.

His behavior became very erratic. Fortunately, his wife was a very shrewd person. She took the help of her uncle. It so happened that his person had a good HR background. Some four different sessions were necessary to impress the man to change track. He finally agreed to join a good BPO. Though the salary was less, at least that was enough to keep him going. He is now keen on doing the Executive weekend MBA to switch over to marketing. This might be a good career change for him. There is an increasing number of people who have similar issues. The trick is to involve the most significant people in his or her family or even friends. In the first case, the elder sister played a very big role.

Highlight their strengths and advise avenues to maximize them

There are cases where people are thoroughly demotivated in some dead-end job or the other. They have to continue in their jobs only because of the financial security such a job offers. They also need to take care of some family problems. In all such cases, there will always be a good hobby that the person may be seriously interested in. He or she should be counseled to get out of the demotivated state by just finding out such a hobby and maximizing avenues to milk such talents. In one specific case, the man had a special interest in singing. Some encouragement from his mother encouraged him to join a local orchestra on a part-time basis. This made him very happy. He not only earned some money but was able to come out of the highly depressed feeling. His old friends who caught up with him on Facebook also encouraged him. This is exactly what should be done. Motivation can always come from any direction.

Arrange for support

This is another vital thing. In all cases where the financial status of the family is not good, some support in the form of special training can help a great deal. Money does play a vital part in such cases. It gives them hope. it gives them happiness too. Some support is especially needed in specific cases, where the demotivation has actually occurred due to frustration with the boss. In such cases, if the wife also chips in with a limited income, the man's attention gets diverted. There are husbands, for example, who have quit their jobs to join their wives in the catering business, which they normally do from home. Since this is a big business with an ever-expanding market, the scope is huge. In at least three different cases, the men have been counseled at the right time. The money that they get to earn now is far in excess of what they would have earned even if they had continued in their jobs.

Constantly talk about achievers and their hard work

In three different cases, the counseling was supported by talk about high achievers. The insight into how such people were able to capitalize on their strengths was refreshing. The two young girls, both of whom had failed love affairs, were able to see the big picture. They understood that nothing is lost. Their parents supported them too.

Such stories of high achievers from the same locality help the demotivated individuals to look for different possibilities. They often get to understand what made them get involved in the emotional tangles in the first place. They become smarter and begin new lives.


Those who are demotivated are normally those who are also misguided. Wrong friends, wrong advise, or the thoroughly shattering and uninteresting work in offices are common themes that keep recurring in many such people. Those with a little background in psychology can easily handle the counseling. What is really needed is emotional support and a bit of guidance. Once this is assured, everything else starts to fall in place.

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Author: Umesh22 Jan 2019 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 9

A nice article by the author dealing with the biggest problem that is how to motivate a demotivated person.

Today we are living in a world where there is always a danger of falling in bad company or bad habits and other inferior indulgences which make a person weak and he becomes a slave of his own vices. Psychologists opine that to correct the ways of these people require a lot of efforts starting from changing their surroundings to changing their mindsets.

I feel only proper and trained people in the line of Psychological counseling can do something positive in these cases by slow and systematic encouragements and raising the level of self-recognition of the suffering person. The individual requires a great deal of support not only from the treating Psychologist but also from his family and friends and the latter is a tougher proposition.

I remember a real-life incident, about 32 years back, which happened in our workplace. One of my colleagues who was otherwise very academic and brilliant suddenly got discouraged and depressed and stopped even coming to the office. As he was close to us we went to his house to support and help but nothing worked. The Psychiatrist who started treating him told us that if he gets support from the colleagues in the workplace he may be cured.

What the Psychiatrist told us was to let him take the antidepressants medicines as prescribed but not to ever leave him alone and to involve him in every activity whether it was a family picnic or office conference. Some of our colleagues did not agree to give him so much time and care but on our request, everyone finally supported and today that person is hail and hearty with his family. Later we were much surprised to see that the person was having a lot of potential in organizing the functions or meets or even picnics and he used to take care of the minute details of preparation.

So such cases require a soft handling and persistent approach to bring the changes.

Author: ABSivakumar22 Jan 2019 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 5

Sir, it is always better to deal with the problem when it is not acute. Please do note that in each case quoted in my article, the victims were either misguided or distracted or demotivated people. As explained in the article, deprivation can also occur when the person is not able to come out of his or her comfort zones.

Trained psychiatrists are very costly. Yes most of them are very professional and their intervention always brings about good change. However, in the not-so-complicated cases, the HR professionals with some background in Psychology are doing a very good job. I think the case you have referred to, is a more serious one requiring psychiatric treatment. If and when I realize that only such help is required, I simply refer the person to those professionals. For those who cannot afford the cost, most Schools of Social Work have psychiatric professionals who offer the service for free. I know dozens of such people too. In Mumbai, such people are doing a superb job in the slums.

Author: Sheo Shankar Jha22 Jan 2019 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 6

The company with which one is associated contributes a lot in maintaining one's mental faculty. In case of any stress, wife or anyone close to the family comes first in alleviating stress with the appropriate words offering one the mental solace and hence the degree of demotivation diminishes with the constant encouraging words.
However, the situation sometimes becomes unmanageable due to lack of guidance from any visible source. In that case, a trained psychiatrist can render help in diffusing the tension that emanated as a result of unemployment, termination from the service or a troubled marriage affair.
In order to offer right guidance, rehabilitation centers operating in most of the cities might address the agony of the depressed people since such centers are equipped with psychiatrists. In most of the cases, the confidence of the patient has to be restored so that one can apply rationality in the process of one's decision making.

Author: Sankalan Bhattacharya24 Jan 2019 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 6

A very good article where the author describes with examples how to motivate persons who somehow became demotivated. Nowadays, we face different situations and have to handle many things at a time. When there are a lot of things to choose from, it is much easier to get confused and this confusion can lead to demotivation also. While it is always important to talk about achievers and the hardships they faced while pursuing their dreams, parents should not compare their kids with others.

Many parents have the tendency to compare the examination score of their kids with the kids who scored higher and always forcing their own kids to become the topper. Every individual has her/his own potential and will flourish best if guided properly in that direction. Deviation from this and forcing the kid to do something she/he doesn't like can also demotivate the kid in some way. The steps mentioned in this article, if followed effectively can control the situation before it goes out of hand. For any demotivated person, mental support from close associates is always essential and the counseling process also works well when there is mental support from someone back home.

Author: Reena Upadhya07 Feb 2019 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 3

The author has presented an in-depth article about ways to motivate demotivated people. It is going to help all those individuals who have lost hope and desire in life. Motivation is essential as it helps to achieve goals. If motivation is lost, the path to achieving goals is lost. When there are no goals in life, the purpose and meaning behind living are somewhere lost. Motivation is necessary for aspirations and creativity.

Demotivation is dangerous. It is necessary to take corrective actions right in the beginning itself. Most of us confuse demotivation with boredom. Thus, we seem to take it easy. Boredom is a counterpart of demotivation. However, it is less dangerous and can be overcome. On the other hand, demotivation is as good as a parasite that will keep feeding on us and there is no stopping unless we take a strict measure against it.

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