An Issue of Motivation

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In this month’s issue of Entrepreneur magazine, a business owner wrote in and stated,

“I’ve been totally ground down by 2009.  How can I get my motivation back?”

While this seems like a straightforward – enough question, especially in light of how businesses have battled the recent economic downturn, I couldn’t help but think of how the brave men and women who founded our nation would have responded.

You see, when they faced a challenge, obstacle, and even imminent death, it was THEN that their motivation was the most fierce.  Even as their neighbors died of starvation or dropped beside them in battle, it was motivation and commitment that kept them going.  In fact, all throughout history, when we look at great accomplishments, most were inspired by an immense and usually prolonged season of  challenge and struggle.  It was the STRUGGLE itself that inspired the motivation to keep going.

Yet, something is very different today.  When we struggle, when we are challenged, and when things can be described as less than “smooth sailing”, we question our path.  We are no longer inclined to use obstacles as an excuse to “recommit”.  Instead, we lose motivation, hope and courage.  If there is no easy button to push, we far too often throw in the towel.

I am certainly not above this tendency myself.  But I am committed to continuing to develop my character… the same way I deliberately develop my physical, mental and professional skills:  with purpose, passion and practice.

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