SN Cowboy Hat: A Case Study in Motivation

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These days, there are many guides and experiments that enlighten Stackers how best they can obtain a cowboy and hold on to it. Back in September, I was completely clueless about this feature. I was just shooting bullets in the dark, hoping to land on bull’s eye. Which of course didn’t happen at times.It was such a bewildering process.

One time last September, I even wrote about this engima in what I hoped was a tongue-in-check manner: then extended an invitation for me to join the lads at the Saloon. Which I did, because I thought that was the magic pill of keeping my cowboy hat. I’m from Singapore and we have a Singlish word which encapsulates our psyche: kiasu. It means to be afraid to lose out to others. I don’t know what the cowboy hat is all about but I definitely want it when others have it! Subsequently, I grew wiser to the ways of this site and learnt that I could probably hang on to a cowboy hat if I zapped Stackers consistently. My motivation was still extrinsic-dominated. I saw the cowboy hat as a status symbol. That others might zap me because my views were somehow deemed more relevant than when I didn’t wear a hat. Seeking attention in a non-flashy way, I guess? I made it to 8 days. Got cocky and thought I would definitely make it to 9 days - and promptly lost it.I then pulled back for a while. I’m not quite sure why. Disappointed? It wasn’t as if I hadn’t tried. Maybe I was trying to absorb the impact this curveball had given me.Eventually, I thought I would give it another go. After all, SN is the funnest way of stacking sats. xP Suffice it to say that I was on high alert. I made it to 10, then 20.

Today marks the 30th day of wearing my cowboy hat.I mean, it isn’t in the bag here because who knows, I may drop it at the 29th mark. But you betcha I would be commenting and zapping like crazy after I publish this post.Gradually, I felt a shift in my soul. The cowboy hat transformed into a source of pride. That despite all of life’s challenges, I had the bandwidth to write (admittedly not so great posts at times). That I had the capacity to remain curious about others. That I was able to prioritise my time and energy and exchange dialogue with people on issues that matter to me. My cowboy hat tells me that I’m strong. tenacious. go-getter. All the positive attributes that boost my self-image. I’m determined to hold on to my cowboy hat for as long as I can!Have you experienced a similar shift from extrinsic motivation to intrinsic motivation? join me here at

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