motivate

verb
mo·​ti·​vate | \ˈmō-tə-ˌvāt \
motivated; motivating

Definition of motivate 

transitive verb

: to provide with a motive : impel questions that excite and motivate youth She was motivated by a desire to help children.

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Other Words from motivate

motivative \ˈmō-​tə-​ˌvā-​tiv \ adjective
motivator \ˈmō-​tə-​ˌvā-​tər \ noun

Examples of motivate in a Sentence

No one knows what motivated him to act in such a violent way.

Recent Examples on the Web

But the very thing that motivates them is the one thing their fathers hated more than anything. Candice Frederick, Harper's BAZAAR, "This Is Us Season 3 Episode 5 Tells the Heartbreaking Truth About Toby," 23 Oct. 2018 Investigators concluded the crash was an intentional act motivated by suicide. - March 24, 2015 – 150 fatalities A Germanwings Airbus A320 crashed into a mountain while en route from Barcelona, Spain to Dusseldorf, Germany. Lucia I. Suarez Sang, Fox News, "Suicide by plane: Trend has cost the lives of more than 393 people in 4 years," 15 Aug. 2018 That experience motivated Schultz to continue running and competing in races to get in shape. Steve Sadin, chicagotribune.com, "Mass start: Schiller Park priest set to compete in 100th triathlon," 11 July 2018 Team building activities occur throughout the year such as a Jeep tour scavenger hunt in Arizona, team happy hours and dinners, hands-on and interactive simulation events, and daily scrum calls to help motivate, develop and retain employees. azcentral, "Top Companies to Work for in Arizona-Small Companies," 7 June 2018 Watch Now: Black Panther's Costume Designer Breaks Down T'Challa's Entrance Scene To view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web browser that : 0%: 0% The factors motivating their overt snark are manyfold. Maya Kosoff, The Hive, "How Silicon Valley’s Petty Feud with Mark Zuckerberg Could Backfire," 5 June 2018 As Vox’s Jane Coaston reported, the Supreme Court motivated Republicans to rally to Trump two years ago as much as any other single issue. Dylan Scott, Vox, "White evangelicals turned out for the GOP in big numbers again," 7 Nov. 2018 Kondo's New York Times best-selling book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, which was released in 2014, motivated people all around the world to free their homes of clutter in favor of more thoughtful, mindful lives. Monique Valeris, ELLE Decor, "How to Organize Your Home in 2019, According to Marie Kondo," 29 Oct. 2018 Like much of Lopez’s life and career, the workout is super motivating. Leah Prinzivalli, SELF, "Jennifer Lopez's 8-Move Arm and Back Workout Is a Total-Body Challenge," 5 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'motivate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of motivate

1836, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for motivate

Last Updated

4 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for motivate

The first known use of motivate was in 1836

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More Definitions for motivate

motivate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of motivate

: to give (someone) a reason for doing something

: to be a reason for (something)

motivate

verb
mo·​ti·​vate | \ˈmō-tə-ˌvāt \
motivated; motivating

Kids Definition of motivate

: to give or be a reason for doing something Prizes motivated him to join the contest.

motivate

transitive verb
mo·​ti·​vate | \ˈmōt-ə-ˌvāt \
motivated; motivating

Medical Definition of motivate 

: to provide with a motive or serve as a motive for motivate patients to change unhealthy lifestyles

Other Words from motivate

motivative \-​ˌvāt-​iv \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on motivate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with motivate

Spanish Central: Translation of motivate

Nglish: Translation of motivate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of motivate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on motivate

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