I’m a big believer in both vocal and visual affirmation. It’s a great way to quickly boost your mood and outlook because regardless of what type of work you do, there will always be something that stresses you out so take some time out of your day to reflect. If you can recall sometime in your life where you have been successful and visualize that in your mind, that will really help you – trust me! For me, its sports. I was a keen rugby player during my school days so I can look back and visualize my good performances to help lift my mood. However, in the absence of visual affirmations, below are eight statements (use whatever is relevant to you) you can use to elevate yourself.
How do you motivate yourself? For some people motivation flows naturally like a river. For others it is an elusive element in their lives. One thing I have learnt is that no matter how hard things get and in times of great need, it is often the words of others that can trigger a spark in you that can kick start your motivation and allow you to bounce back. A blog post by Srini Rao (www.theskooloflife.com) has done just that for me. His post “Tips for Navigating the Waters of Life” is a tremendously inspiring and no nonsense look at dealing with life’s challenges. Below is a summarized version of the key points in his post.
Your instincts are almost always right
Your instincts are the higher self speaking
If you go against instinct you are likely to land yourself in a complete mess
Be Wary of the Steps You Take
If you decide on something, be absolutely 100 per cent sure you can see it through
Know when it’s just time to bail out when you feel you can’t manage it
Don’t worry about getting ahead of others, focus on what you are doing right now – play your own game
Be present and the rest will take care of itself
Being in the present will allow you to achieve peak performance
Don’t focus too much on the future and don’t get caught up in the past, this is a recipe for mediocrity
Erase Failure and Get Back Up
You’re ability to deal with failure and setback will determine whether or not you have what it takes to achieve what you are truly capable of in your life
Often the second wave of opportunity is better than the first so don’t beat yourself up. Your friends are on their first wave of opportunity
If you keep critiquing yourself with others then you are likely miss out on the second wave of opportunity which is often better than the first
There is no need to live life 100 mph, just slow down because you will get where you want to go much faster and you are less likely to suffer a setback
Small is Better
Don’t make gigantic leaps because it is the small things in life that make the big difference and you will spend less effort for more results
Timing is Important
Take advantage of opportunities that may not be present in the good times.
Tough economic times often drive people towards innovation and breakthrough and this just happens to be timing at work
Wave Selection is the Key
The key to success in any area of life is dependent on the choices you make so choose wisely
Catching the right wave will enable you to catch one wave after another
Choose the wrong wave and you will have to endure a hard time and work extra hard to pull your head out of the water
Laugh and Smile Everyday
The age old saying, ‘laughter is the best medicine’ is still true
It is a medicine that you won’t find in any pharmacy and costs you absolutely nothing
Srini’s analogy of viewing life’s opportunities and chances as waves provides a fresh and sensible way of looking at life. This may be the only success principle you need to follow. It has certainly allowed me to look at life from a different perspective, and it may do the same for you too.
Pursuit of Happyness may not be many people’s choice as a favourite movie. Still, it is a very memorable movie for me, and one of the slightly better movies on TV over the festive period. It was notable for me because it revealed in spectacular detail the struggles and stresses we face as human beings. By the end of the movie, I was dumbfounded because I had to remind myself that this was a true story. A man and his son went through this. It was also the first time a movie had brought tears to my eyes (the softy that I am). Chris Gardner was a phenomenal hero of his own life. The story of Chris Gardner is very touching because it reveals the worst that can happen to any capable person. Gardner is a bright salesman and family man. When an investment goes wrong, his family is brought to the brink of financial disaster. As time progresses and the family’s troubles intensify, Chris’s wife leaves him and their son to move to another city. Chris becomes broke, and he and his son rely on homeless shelters for food and a place to sleep. Chris goes through immense hardship personally and financially but takes some solace when he sees an opportunity for a stockbroker internship position come up. He then becomes dedicated to this opportunity driven by a steadfast commitment to his son. Chris faces one challenge and setback after another (including failing to sell a bone density scanner), but his resolve remains strong. In the end, it was his commitment and self-belief that won him the job.
Here are some insights into Chris’s character:
He didn’t let his problems define him
He didn’t want any sympathy from anybody
He cherished his relationship with his son
He did things he wasn’t comfortable with
He didn’t let his feelings get the better off him
He persevered – adamant and determined to sell the scanner despite all its flaws
He remained professional throughout his troubles
He believed in his abilities
These are eight things that stood out to me from the character of Chris Gardner, but the one thing that kept Chris Gardner going despite all his hardship was that he was proactive in everything he did. It was this momentum that spurred him to win the job he so desperately wanted, and by doing so, he was able to reverse his fortunes. It takes a big man to fall from grace and manage to get back on his feet again. Chris Gardner is living proof that bouncing back from despair is possible.