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  1. 1. Motivation There is a huge disparity between the motivation levels of a mediocreperson and a successful person. In all honesty, a mediocre person hassagging confidence levels, a bare minimum of positive energy, and aninferiority complex; in contrast, a successful person who is driven andmotivated is indefatigable, a stickler for efficiency, and is always exploringavenues for personal growth. For instance, compare an athlete who lacksmotivation and barely spends any time training, and an athlete who is highlymotivated and trains harder than anyone else. One will have a below-averagecareer record, and the other will have an ever-rising career record. In allfairness, if motivation is absent, you do not have the remotest prospect ofachieving success. I cannot think of a more appropriate term to describe my learningcurve, which is on a steep, upwardly mobile curve, than motivation.Basically, I am a self-motivated person. I am always full of energy and donot feel bored working for long hours. Motivation gets my competitivejuices flowing. Being the person I am, I do not feel the need for someone tobuck me up during my moments of struggle. Motivation has helped me tolive my dream. It gives me a kick to turn in near-perfect performances. Forme, motivation tops the list of a person’s positive qualities. I owe a millionthanks to my superb motivation level. Patently, I consider myself lucky (nohyperbole intended!). There are two kinds of people in our world: those who spend theirlives waiting for something to happen, and those who make things happen.Where do you fit in? Would you like to make things happen, but you don’tknow how? The answer is simple: motivation. Motivation comes from the word “motivate,” which is defined as “stir toaction.” Motivation is a singular, driving force to achieve a desired result. Itpropels a person to give his best shot. Employers use praise and financialrewards to inspire their employees. Politicians give mesmerizing speeches toincrease their votes. Parents rely on words of encouragement to ignite thespark in their child’s mind. Motivation is gleefully married to success (youneed motivation at the beginning, at the middle, and at the end on your pathto success). They hit it off well in their relationship.
  2. 2. Motivating factors include: respect, power, philanthropy, wealth,creativity, ideas, health, achievement, growth, inner peace, and a joyful life.However, these factors vary from person to person. Such factors are neitherage specific nor gender specific. They are simply case specific. According tovarious experts, these factors depend on the needs that have to be fulfilledand the desires one wishes to accomplish or gain. Motivation, likeintelligence, can’t be directly observed. Instead, motivation can only beinferred by noting a person’s behavior. Apparently, you need cutting-edge skills, ruthless thinking, commonsense, articulateness, and punctuality, but if you don’t have motivation, youwon’t go far in life. Think about this comparison. You have a car with a fulltank of gas, a superbly designed engine, an excellent set of tires, aquadraphonic sound system, a GPS system, pneumatic brakes, and a glossyexterior. There it sits. This car has tremendous potential. But if there is nodriver or if the driver does not put the key in the ignition and start theengine, the car won’t travel an inch. You guessed right: motivation is thedriver that makes the human engine move. Infusion of confidence-building thought In a T20 cricket match, Team A won the toss and chose to field first.From the very first over, it was raining fours and sixes for Team B. Theopening partnership yielded 130 runs of a mere 80 balls. Three batsmen inTeam B’s batting line-up scored quick-fire 50’s. As a result, Team B set animposing target of 230 runs. During the break, the coach of Team A decidednot to do a post-mortem of his players’ performance, but instead said,“Guys, I am confident that we are more than capable of chasing down thistarget and winning the match hands down.” His timely, appropriate, andinspiring words were the perfect shot in the arm for the team. The final scoreof the match read: Team A beat Team B by 7 wickets in 17 overs. Quite aconvincing victory indeed! Such is the nature of life. When we feel that good times are justaround the corner, we tingle all over with joy. When we fear we are going tolose, we are sucked into the depths of despair. Hence, motivation isnecessary to deal with both happy and depressing moments.
  3. 3. Keep renewing your “motivational bank account” Freddy, wearing a turtleneck sweater to hide his turkey neck, was flyingfrom Chicago to Phoenix to attend a motivational seminar. The venue waswithin a 10-mile radius of the airport. The event was scheduled to start at 6p.m. At 6:15 p.m., the motivational speaker appeared on stage. A shiver ofexcitement ran through the audience. After keeping his eyes glued to speakerduring his two-hour-long talk about motivation and positive thinking,Freddy got pumped up and began thinking positive thoughts. Within fourdays, these feelings started to wear off; however, until he was back to themotivation level he was at before he had listened to the speaker. This is whatI call “back to square one, or returning to ground zero.” The negative aspect of motivation: it is short-lived. For this seriousreason, we have to continually motivate ourselves. When you take a bath, you cannot rid yourself of bodily impuritiesforever. You have to take regular baths to be hygienic. Also, occasionalexercise does not strengthen your muscles. You have to exercise consistentlyto maintain excellent fitness levels. The formula for real motivation Motivation is at its peak, when you have: (1) A mental picture: Before starting out on the journey of success, you must have a clear mental picture. It will help you to take actions that will send you in the right direction. (2) A burning desire: There should be fire burning inside your belly to get what you want. (3) Dogged determination: It helps you to endure even in the face of adversity. (4) Laser-sharp focus: The following acronym explains everything F – Follow O – One
  4. 4. C – Course U – Until S – Successful (5) Immense faith: When you keep faith in your abilities, you can literally move mountains, i.e., any impossible dream can be converted into reality. Writing—my driving force When I was doing the research for this book, I often burned themidnight oil. I had several cups of espresso and some Red Bull energydrinks during the process. Sometimes, I ate a whole slab of chocolate withmy drinks. I used to sit on an ergonomic chair and keep my fingers busilytyping on the laptop. Never once did I show disinterest or run out of steam.My love affair with writing never ends. I got a new high whenever I satdown to express myself with words. “Writing” fortified me during my crisismoments. It helped me to shoo away negative thoughts. Without it, my lifewould be a vacuum. Today, those near and dear to me are happily surprisedto see the major changes in me. They gush with excitement over my newincarnation. What has my self-motivated aunt (she is a breast cancer survivor. Shehas undergone a double mastectomy.) taught me?Note: These ideas are not only beneficial to me but to people in all cornersof the world. (1) Difficulties should stiffen your resolve to succeed. (2) Push yourself harder to succeed. (3) Always give yourself pep talks and think win-win. (4) Tap your inner potential. (5) The shaping of your life is not in the hands of God but lies in you. (6) Have a healthy body and an incisive mind.
  5. 5. (7) Be an action-oriented person to convert your dreams into reality. (8) Be patient with the existing circumstances. Emulating and imitating Every person wants to follow in the footsteps of an inspirationalperson. He tries to emulate that person. However, there is a big distinctionbetween absorbing good qualities from somebody and copying that personwholesale. A person of naked ambition learns from others. He incorporatesthose lessons into his actions. On the flip side, a person who patterns himselfafter somebody lacks self-confidence up front. Imitation can yieldadvantageous results only when it is smartly done and has an original flavor.It has to last a long time. Only then we can forge ahead. Plain imitation does not guarantee success. Others can only inspire us.But the hard work is ours. The message is simple: a vulture cannot be a lionby merely imitating it. I know a flaky 14-year-old girl who is in puppy love with ElvisPresley, who occupies her entire being. Every inch of her bedroom wall iscovered with his photos. She brings a three-layer cake, covered in a beautifulrich ganache, every year on his birthday. Being a huge Elvis fan, she thinksthat any criticism of him is blasphemy. This celebrity is the force aroundwhich her life revolves. I just thought about Anna Nicole Smith, who spenther entire life impersonating Marilyn Monroe, and the sad thing is that sheended up dying like her. Are you motivated positively or negatively?Let me allude to the story of two guys who were biological brothers (but thesimilarity ends there. They were not cut from the same cloth.). One was an“awful thug.” He was on the Interpol radar for the last several years. Theother was a dutiful FBI agent. He was a soft-spoken gentleman. How onearth could two brothers related through the same blood be such a contrast toeach other?
  6. 6. The first brother was asked, “Why have you gotten into this? You area threat to society, and cops are after you. What spurs you on?” The firstbrother replied, “My dad. My dad used to be an incorrigible criminal. Hecommitted bestial crimes (he was charged with eight counts of first-degreemurder and a single count of felony assault of a law enforcement officer.Apart from this, he was also responsible for many beheadings and rapes.).He had the morals of a junkyard dog. I just followed in his footsteps andbecame what I am today.” The second brother was asked, “What makes you successful in life?Reveal the ‘motivation magic’ behind your outstanding achievements.” Thesecond brother answered, “My dad. In my earliest childhood, I came toknow about the faulty, dangerous mentality of my father. I made a firm,conscious decision to become a morally correct and respected person.” Two people. Same source of motivation. Different ways ofapproaching it. Gory issue (like a slasher movie) Moises had no latitude to spread his wings during his childhooddays. He was born in a country that has been waging 16 years of continuouswar, resulting in a disproportionate number of blood-spattered young faces,glazed eyes, and small, limp bodies. There are 1.2 million people displacedfrom their homes in his country, about half a million living in refugee campsin neighboring countries, and 1 million in need of emergency food assistancewithin his country. The local military junta (a paper tiger) is spending lots ofmoney on weapons. Not only this, it has even asked the young people to jointhe military and help the authorities in liquidating the enemy. Moises, whosenatural feelings are opposed to war, will learn to listen to the voices of“authority” instead of to his own feelings, however. This completeindoctrination causes him to imagine his future as one in which he iswearing a military uniform and fighting for his country as a true-blue patriot. Admire the person you are Many of us are under the impression that we are not endowed with anygood qualities whatsoever. We spend large chunks of time underestimatingand undermining our personal strengths. In the name of a reality check, we
  7. 7. tend to give excess attention to our shortcomings. Yet by doing this, we areletting ourselves down. We are taking away our chances of succeeding. How can you open up to people if you are afflicted with self-doubt? In what way can you impress people if you find yourselfuninteresting? How can you expect people to like you when you are ahardcore self-critic? By no means can this kind of mentality bring thedesired results. If you take a dim view of your traits, the chances are that others toowill see no good qualities in you. To make others appreciate yourpersonality, project yourself in the best possible manner. Be self-caring,support yourself, and be your own best friend. Don’t judge yourself by what others think of you. Not everybody willbe comfortable in your company. That is their problem and not yours. Everyperson has his own charm, uniqueness, and mental wavelength. Never fallinto the trap of beating up on yourself just because someone has seriousissues with you. If someone tends to hate you, there could be a laundry list ofreasons for it. That person may be envious, insecure, introverted, or sufferfrom an inferiority complex. Also, there might be no psychologicalconnection between you and that person. It is no surprise, then, that youcannot get along well in the relationship. Don’t take your weaknesses too seriously. It kills the feel-goodfactor about yourself. After all, everybody has his share of weaknesses.Concentrate on your positive points. Learn to bring out the best in yourself.Self-motivate and pat yourself on the back. Respect your potential and prideyourself on your accomplishments. Nobody can be as good as you can be toyourself. Only you have that “exclusive right.” Sample: “Hey, come on, I hold an edge over most people interms of ability, attitude, and intelligence. What if I have a handful chinks inmy armor? It’s ok. After all, nobody is picture perfect. I’ll keep improvingwith time. My calm and unruffled self-assurance will pay off.” Lowdown about 7 role models from the animal kingdom
  8. 8. (1) Puffin One day while I was enjoying an idyllic vacation (to declutter mymental file cabinet) in a beach cottage, I read an excerpt from a book onpuffins, and it whetted my appetite. Puffins are sea birds that lay their eggson cliffs so that their eggs will not be eaten by predators. But when theirbabies incubate, the parents get ready for an odyssey to the beach. When thetime arises to follow their parents, the babies jump from an astonishingheight, many of them making it safely to the beach. (2) Dog The fact that dogs forge extraordinary bonds with their humanmasters enjoys a wide currency even to this day. There are a number ofoccasions when dogs put their lives in danger to save somebody, ennoblingtheir nature in the minds of humans. There is an often-stated platitude: “Adog is man’s best friend.” A dog never does disservice to its master. Dogowners have always been extravagant in their praise of their dogs. (3) Wolf Wolves are famous for their physical strength and toughness. Theyfiercely attack their prey. But a wolf knows that hunting in droves is the sinequa non for a bigger lunch. When hunting together, wolves can even kill a500-pound moose, which is 10 times bigger than any of them and capable ofputting up a strong fight. (4) Elephant Elephants are known to live in herds, with an elder female at the headof the group. The infants are nurtured together with almost no specialtreatment, and if one of them injures his or her leg, for instance, the entireherd will walk slower for the sake of the injured one’s well-being (withoutany objections). Showing tender loving care is emblematic of their goodnature. Elephants are carriers of compassion and warmth. (5) Salmon
  9. 9. Salmon travel thousands and thousands of miles to reach the rivers inwhich they started their lives. Most of them do not reach their goal, but thosewho do provide their progeny with the opportunity to embark on the samejourney. (6) Golden-fronted Bowerbird The most notable characteristic of bowerbirds is the extraordinarilycomplex behavior of the males, which is to build a bower to attract mates.Every male builds some kind of presentation tent where he places a varietyof objects he has collected. These objects—usually strikingly blue in hue—may include hundreds of shells, leaves, flowers, feathers, stones, berries, andeven discarded plastic items or pieces of glass. The bird spends hourscarefully sorting and arranging his collection, with each object in a specificplace; if an object is moved while the bowerbird is away, he will put it backin its place. At mating time, the female will go from bower to bower,watching as the male owner conducts an often elaborate mating ritual andinspecting the quality of the bower. (7) Albatross The life span of albatross is about 50 years, which is quite extraordinaryfor a bird. But what is even more interesting is the reality that these birds aremonogamous, which made them a symbol for sailors traveling in far-offa re a s . Animals behave the way their instinct and senses tell them to behave, and they still prove to be outstanding role models. Finding the right value in them and using it in real life is what makes people remarkable. How personality types can affect the degree of motivationGo-getter individuals: They have iron-willed determination by means ofwhich they achieve their high goals in life. Hard work comes as naturally tothem as snoring. “Never get stuck, but move on” is their tagline. On thehighway of life, they are going fast. They do not compromise on theirefforts. Fears and anxieties do not disrupt their carefree moments. They are afountain of goodness from which many draw their inspiration for life.
  10. 10. Laid-back individuals: They are incapable of withstanding the rigors ofcertain situations. Their concentration span is very minimal. Lack ofdiscipline is one of their major negative qualities. Their energy fadesquickly. They are not consistent performers. All these factors extinguishtheir hopes of gaining the big prizes in life. In their lives, the ratio of losingmoments to winning moments is greater. Since early in his childhood, Lonnie was an “I want to make a big namefor myself” type of individual. On the other hand, Perry was a lazy guy.Turning the wheel of life, 25 years from that time, let’s see where they noware (in life): Lonnie has built a first-class, cutting-edge hospital inVancouver. He enjoys a lot of financial clout. Perry works as a small-timegarage mechanic. He always has a melancholy look on his face. Motivation vs. inspiration To illustrate the difference, I will make a comparison of two ways tomow your lawn. Motivation is similar to using a push mower. To motivatethe lawnmower, you have to get behind it and push. The moment you stoppushing, the lawnmower ceases to move. To make it move again, you mustpush again. Eventually, the lawn is mown and looks in tip-top shape, but yousuffer from excruciating tiredness and are not inclined to do this activityagain in the near future. Inspiration is similar to using a self-propelled lawn mower. The lawnmower is fully aware of its job and it is self-propelled, so you can completethe task easily. Ultimately, the lawn is mowed and looks awesome. Youcan’t stop yourself from saying, “Whee! This is so very easy. It never gets tome.” The idea of cutting your grass is no longer incapacitating. Motivating your workers is a 24x7x365 job, in which you must actlike a “force” to guide them. The moment you step away from this job, theybecome feeble. By inspiring other people, you awaken their sleeping giantand, chances are, they propel themselves to achieve a goal. Motivation is a good fodder for:( I) Career goals
  11. 11. (1) Giving a sterling performance at work.(2) Revamping your skills so that your career train is chugging along the tracks smoothly.( II) Financial goals(1) Building a nest egg by regular investment of small amounts of money.(2) Putting in superhuman efforts to earn more.(III) Health and fitness goals(1) Becoming a fitness freak.(2) Listening to Jane Fonda workout tapes.(IV) Family and religious goals(1) Giving number one priority to filial piety.(2) Reciting the rosary before dinner with your family.(V) Social goals(1) Mingle more.(2) Developing healthy relationships. Motivation quiz(1) Do you sink to any level to make money? (a) Yes (b) No
  12. 12. (2) Complacency inflicts telling damage on motivation.(a) Yes (b) No(3) Are you a spent force?(a) Yes (b) No(4) Self-motivation is the central nervous system of success.(a) Yes (b) No(5) Do you feel depressed when your “quality efforts” go unsung?(a) Yes (b) No(6) Are you an atheist?(a) Yes (b) No(7) Are successful people the brand ambassadors of motivation?(a) Yes (b) No(8) Can you rise from the rubble and come out firing on all cylinders?(a) Yes (b) No(9) You have to wake up from a torpor to become motivated.(a) Yes (b) No(10) Success requires abiding motivation.(a) Yes (b) No Conclusion: There is a “convenient theory” in our action-taking. Weperform actions that we feel are convenient, and don’t do those that aren’tconvenient to us. I treat it as a bald-faced lie when someone says, “I am an
  13. 13. unmotivated person.” Inside every one of us lies an enormous motivationalpotential just waiting to be unleashed. Although the motives behind ouractions (or nonaction, as the case may be) are not always evident to otherpeople, every choice we make is motivated by something!