Postpartum: Motivation Concept Theory
Motivation in general
can well be explained as one basic reason for life existence. Every animal that has the slightest capacity to make decisions has to be motivated towards choosing a certain way of action. Motivation is defined as a voluntary force generated from within or outside a being to act in a preferred manner for personal satisfaction in achieving or exceeding targeted goals (Shah & Gardner, 2008). The aspect of motivation has so many theories arising from research and studies over time that had different perspectives towards the same goal or end. Motivation
is differently perceived from one individual to the
next and from one circumstance to the other. It is therefore true to say that, not every theory of motivation works in every situation. One has to carefully understand the prevailing needs before choosing a reasonable theory of motivation. Cognitive dissonance arises when one has two conflicting choices or thoughts at the same time
. This often places one in an uncomfortable position in terms of feelings which might end up in changing attitudes, behavior or general alteration in personal belief in an attempt to restore balance. The changes are not always constructive because a conflict of interest which ends up with one choice always leads to a state of partial dissatisfaction or in under extreme pressurized situations depression or stress. This paper addresses the Cognitive Dissonance harmony theory which endeavors to motivate individuals into having a push from within to control every attitude and personal belief in a peaceful and harmonious way.
The Cognitive dissonance theory which in a way seeks to self motivate an individual to a position whereby they can calm own amidst personal conflicting Ideas or attitudes can apply in one scenario and totally fail to address the needs of an individual when used (Mills & Jones, 1999). Being a registered nurse with new born babies and mothers in a big Hospital in the Postpartum Unit, I always come across different conflicting conditions that require several ways of action in resolving. The main psychological attention area that is common especially in the new mothers is the postpartum depression which can be mild or extreme after child birth for the mother. This occurs depending on the mother and circumstances anytime for a period up to one year after childbirth, but on average happens within the three months after childbirth. Having experienced meetings and counseling of mothers with this depression which sometimes just happens for no apparent reason and the mother is stressed, am always in a dilemma. This is so pronounced in first time mothers especially those at a young age that do not have a clue of what is happening to them. They end up getting so depressed and confused to the extent of not caring about the baby (Cooper, 2007). I have the role of ensuring they do not slump any further than it is conducive for their health and the baby’s. Extreme cases have me in a position whereby I have to choose between professional cross and ethics so much to a personal level in an attempt to reducing their anguish or, sticking to the more formal code required that only allows me to dictate my role and watch them fight on. In my position it works well because am allowed to get in touch with their emotional side alongside working thus I can suppress my alternatives. Consequently I get to guide the patient on until I come to a point that will allow me to work on both choices in a position that would help the patient beyond my ethics and also protect me from any professional misconduct. In some cases one can be forced to entice the patient by misrepresenting facts in order to calm them if only to help manage their depression which is against the ethics.
Taking an example of the midwives or maternity nurses who are supposed to keep assisting mothers during childbirth but have to occasionally address the emotional needs of the new mothers. They cannot be assisted by a case of Cognitive dissonance harmony whereby they are to be firm and ensure the new born mothers follow prescriptions and other postnatal checkups in time. As well they have to ensure that she attends to other mothers yet a specific new mother insists on emotional support from them. As nurses we are given basic all round training in healthcare and the maternity nurse maybe in a position to help but due to the tight schedule; they either have to politely decline knowing they were the perfect people to connect with the mother or forego their urgent duties for a while and assist the mother knowing the other patients need them. It should therefore be noted that this isn’t their specific line of work especially being in a big hospital where job specialization is highly practiced and adhered to. Therefore cognitive dissonance harmony might not make them feel better because the two conflict of interest matters are mutually exclusive. This hence means that one cannot happen at the same time with the other, one cannot wait for the other and one cannot be kept waiting! This is a perfect dilemma that does not have any easy form of harmonization.
Today’s work environment is changing in terms of employee versatility. Employers are in constant need of employees who can work across several departments away from their comfortable specialization zones (Mills & Jones, 1999). It is therefore not an option but a requirement to establish new theoretical motivation models that not only work on the individual but also spread the motivation to whoever the individuals interact with in the working environment. Sometimes simple theories can be generated by simply blending the existing theories to satisfy a prevailing need.
Having in mind that creation of new motivation theories is necessary especially due to the versatile nature of employees and globalization which has ensured diversity in the work force; any act to the contrary would lead to:
Misunderstandings arising from work situations especially emergencies whereby individuals have to decide between managing their own well operating departments or leaving their dockets shortly to assist other colleagues solve difficult situations in their areas.
Low productivity due to the synergy effect decline. Synergy is generated by two or more individuals working as a group in harmony irrespective of their departments or assignment differences. It often realizes more output than each individuals output added at the end of their respective assignments. The synergy is basically explained as; 2+2= 6 and not 2+2=4. Synergy has a multiplication effect on individual productivity.
The creation of new motivation theories would greatly boost personal satisfaction because employees will have extra avenues to motivate themselves in cases of cognitive dissonance (Wlodkowski, 2008). This is because one will not be uncomfortable for long with existing conflict of interests. They should be able to offload some to able and willing colleagues. If the new theories which address loopholes of the existing cognitive theory are understood and practiced in the workplace then there will be a positive perception of the role sub delegation occurs especially in terms of personal priorities overshadowing official duties. This will ensure increased productivity because employees will have lower stress levels and have extra stamina in fully focusing on their responsibilities.
In conclusion, no motivation theory can work unless the subject clearly understands why it is being practiced or why a third party is subjecting them to the theory. So as to benefit maximally from the motivational aspect and regardless of types of procedure employed, an individual has to first of all acknowledge the awkward position they are in and appreciate the need to get out of the disadvantaging position either to themselves or colleagues.
Cooper, J. (2007). Cognitive dissonance: fifty years of classic theory. Los Angeles, Calif.: SAGE Publications.
Mills, J., & Jones, E. (1999). Cognitive dissonance: progress on a pivotal theory in social psychology. Washington, DC [etc.]: American Psychological Association.
Shah, J., & Gardner, W. (2008). Handbook of motivation science. New York: Guilford Press.
Wlodkowski, R. (2008). Enhancing adult motivation to learn: a comprehensive guide for teaching all adults. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, A Wiley Imprint.