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Control in Motivation

Control in Motivation

Two of the key approaches which emphasise control as a motivational factor are Rotter’s Locus of Control theory, and attribution theory. Both recognise the importance of the perception of control and expectations. It is also an important factor in models of intrinsic motivation and can help explain individual differences. Autonomy is also a factor linked to the idea of control.

Expectancy-value theories make the assumption that people’s behaviour is guided logically by the anticipated consequences of the behaviour (expectancies) and the value or importance they attach to such outcomes. Whether, and to what degree, we actually make such decisions is debatable and variable but there is a role for such theories. Perhaps they expect humans to be too logical and rational.

It is obvious to any hypnotist that the need to take control is associated with many decisions that clients take to change. Many want to “take charge”, and stop being controlled by cigarettes, food, anxiety, old trauma, other people etc. Going too far down the “control” line can be counter-productive with some clients, however. If the client feels they are being told that they have control it can be interpreted as blame in having been “out of control” before

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