Many people have their motivation constantly in flux. This is because we often let the outside world dictate how we feel, but this doesn’t need to be the case. Gratitude provides you the energy to be your best self, and the fuels of gratitude are infinite. If you struggle with finding your gratitude, here are 7 fuels that can provide an endless amount:

Your descendants

You are the descendant of warriors, people who overcame adversity and were courageous. People struggled to survive without the luxuries we have now, but they survived. You have that courage as well; the genetics of those warriors have been passed on to you.

Self-awareness and epistemic humility

As human beings, we are dealing with incomplete data. We all have talent of some kind, but need to invest time and effort to live up to our potential. Admit to yourself that you are never 100% certain of anything, but with that effort you can get closer. To have humility, you must understand that there are many things you don’t know. This leaves your mind open to new information.

Global perspective

There are many places with people that don’t have what you have. Citizens in places like Afghanistan offer their children to people they don’t know, just to give their children a better life in a more fortunate country. Acknowledge that you are fortunate to be where you are.

Historical perspective

No matter how hopeless you feel, you must understand there are far more opportunities for you than people from the past had. Only three lifetimes ago, the child mortality rate was 47%. Understand that your potential is so much greater than previous generations.

Known foundation

You have an obligation to become the greatest version of yourself, because so many people sacrificed for you (family, friends, mentors, etc.). Your achievements are not just for you; you owe these people your best efforts.

Unknown foundation

People you have never met also sacrificed for you, whether in war, fighting for human rights or struggling to make the world better. Many of these people’s impacts were cut short, so it is your obligation to continue with what they started.

Statistical Determinism

Everyone experiences the world differently. Your reality is not anyone else’s reality. This is why you must live with empathy, and never assume someone’s future based on probability. There is a randomness to the world that we don’t understand, and with that we have free will that we’re responsible for.

Others have free will as well, but under different circumstances than you. Knowing you have free will allows you maximize your drive to succeed, but knowing others have different conditions of free will gives you empathy and understanding of their reality.


Living with gratitude is taking time and energy to appreciate and respect life. Look at your existence, and you should be filled with gratitude for your health, free will and potential. Your potential for greatness and impact comes with an inherent moral obligation to achieve your purpose in life.


Note: This article was created from a speech given by Sean Patton, at a LevelUp conference held over Zoom.

Sean Patton previously worked for the military, and now teaches leadership skills to executives and entrepreneurs, as well as holding 1 on 1 training sessions with entrepreneurs.