Monday, December 01, 2008

Achievement: We acquire strength in what we overcome.

Challenge: The greater the difficulty the more glory in surmounting it.

One of the things that drove me crazy at work was those corny motivational statements plastered all over the break room walls at the factory or office. You know the ones with the great pictures and the inspirational statements below them, meant to get you into a positive attitude about your work. If I was still in the corporate world I would go to this website I’ve found and substitute a few of the corny ones for these from

Cluelessness: There are no stupid questions, but there are a LOT of inquisitive idiots.

Consulting: If you’re not part of the solution, there’s good money to be made in prolonging the problem.

Effort: Hard work never killed anybody, but it is illegal in some places.

Laziness: Success is a journey not a destinations, so stop running.

Tradition: Just because you’ve always done it that way doesn’t mean that it’s not incredibly stupid.

Sanity: Minds are like parachutes. Just because you’ve lost yours doesn’t mean you can borrow mine.

The TV show Office and the cartoon Dilbert are full of quotes and that is what makes them so appealing. It is the anti-motivational message that resonates with people, not the motivational ones. The majority of people relate to failure, while only a few relate to success and a manager standing in front of a cadre of employees spouting clichés becomes the opposite of motivation. At best they become the butt of jokes and youtube videos.

Motivation doesn’t come from outside sources. At best they are reminders of what we have inside but the switch is not going to come from a frequency of posters and clichés. Motivation, the opposite of despair, comes from considering yourself in a constant state of indebtedness. Most people don’t do that. Most people believe the world OWES THEM and doesn’t believe they OWE anything to the world or their God. Second, motivation comes from family. A supportive nurturing family breeds motivated people. And finally, motivation is a decision, not a feeling. Just because you don’t FEEL motivated doesn’t mean you can’t be. DECIDE to be motivated for whatever task you have and you will be motivated.

Motivation: Giving thanks for all, feeling family vibes, and choosing it.

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