But then I thought how this happens in everyday life, too. For example I have three colleagues right now who are each experiencing some incredible difficulties in their lives either through illness, injury or disease. Yet, for the most part, each of them continue to come to work each day and continue do what's expected of them and I don't hear too much complaining from them. Are they motivated by corporate policy, monetary necessity or something else? Knowing each of them I'd have to say they each have a inner motivation for carrying on and their passion for what they do is really the driving force that helps them play hurt.
This idea is a central theme in the book, "The War of Art" by Steven Pressfield. The book is a fascinating look at both the obstacles that are put in our way and - more interestingly - the ones we put there ourselves that keep us from achieving our artistic, personal and professional goals. If you're looking for a kick-in-the-pants motivator to help you get back into the game or to understand the reasons why people can play hurt this is a good read.