Motivation is simply Avoiding Discomfort

We are bombarded with the imperative mission to seek happiness, but from an evolutionary perspective we are motivated to avoid discomfort.

Anxiety, ambition, and desire are discomforts from which we act: we re-act. There is no “carrot and stick” of reward and punishment. Our only motivating force is avoidance, which is a response., and the challenge is to harness our response as responsibility.

Meanwhile, happiness seems to be a by-product of achievement or participation, not an end to be pursued unto itself.

Merging these notions: “dis-traction” (avoidance) towards happiness will fail to bring it, because you gain no “traction.”