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I remember someone asking me "Why all this talk about motivation? How come people can't just motivate themselves?"
If there was an easy answer for that one, there would be a lot of speakers and writers out of business. The truth is that, as Zig Ziglar said, motivation is not a one time thing, just like eating and bathing. Staying motivated isn't as easy as one might believe; as a matter of fact, ask any 10 people how they stay motivated and nine of them probably won't be able to answer the question because it's not something they think about. If you're lucky enough to find 10 very happy or successful people you might have a better chance at getting some kind of answer, but most of us don't know that many people who are "up" all the time.
We spend money on motivational CDs and tapes, and we read books on motivation and success. We're a world that's always searching for the next thing that will help us feel better about ourselves. Is it meditation, tai chi, zen, te law of attraction, ... does it matter where we get motivation from?
I believe that if I can say something positive to someone else that it enhances both of our lives. If it's one on one, I like to find out what a person feels is important to them, what their goals are, and try to offer encouragement and ideas that might help them on their way. If I'm speaking to a group, I'll often tell them things about my life, and how I approach all the different aspects of my own dreams and goals. My motivation in doing this is to always try to help others feel better about their lives and themselves.
There are so many negative people in the world. Not all of them see themselves that way, but it's the truth. There are more people who will not believe in a person, or themselves, than there are who will believe. Let's face this fact; trying to do something different than what others expect is hard. Our parents told us to get a good education and get a job so that we can pay our bills. Anything that's out of that's out of the norm is scary to them and so they'll try to talk you out of it. This is why motivation is important.
I became a music major in college, with dreams of being a songwriter. I wasn't bad, but it didn't matter to my parents. They worked hard on trying to talk me out of it; I wouldn't budge. I had a much different vision than my parents did of my future; I wanted big things. However, what was in the back of my mind wasn't fame or fortune, but this quote that my high school chemistry teacher had on his wall. No one else seemed to care about it, but it went deep into my mind. That quote was "You don't get an education to learn how to do anything except how to think." I believed that was true because there were many things we learned in high school and college that I knew wouldn't have anything to do with my life later on, but I knew that the process of broadening my mind would help me to do other things later in life, whether I knew what those things were or not.
I have been lucky to achieve things that I never had thought I would. I knew I would have some achievements; I didn't know how I was going to do it. I look at where I am now and realize that what being a music major did for me was teach me that I could create, I could get in front of others, I could work well with others, and I could motivate people to be better than they thought they could be.
If I can go for my dreams while helping others shoot for theirs, whether they're employees or not, why can't everyone? This is why I talk about motivation; I want everyone to feel as though they have a shot at living the life they want. In any case, it can always be better if it's not great already. I'd love to talk to you about it; let's grow together!