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Category: Motivation

Greatness on Dime

A few years ago I was approached by the owner for a mental health organization to create an official logo.

At the time I was operating a side business for different creative services and was confident I could pull of the job even though I didn’t have an extensive design background.

A week later I sent the final draft for the logo to the owner. He loved it and paid me according to the quoted rate we both agreed to.

A few months ago this same logo was on the owner’s t-shirt while he sat to discuss his organization during a segment on a well known television talk show.

The online software I used to create the logo only cost me only $17/month.

Creating greatness doesn’t always involve spending a lot on tools or training. There are so many valuable applications available to us in this digital age. Spend some time looking and you’ll be surprised at what you find.

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Intimidation Is Overrated

In reality intimidation is just a facade in our minds.

Take for example beginning a new role at a new company.

We either think we’re not good enough, smart enough, creative enough to make it when we look at all of the talent around us.

Or we use our imagination to believe they are all ‘flexing’ on us while disregarding the knowledge we bring to the table.

A better thought process is to approach a new opportunity from the place of learning. Be confident in the knowledge and experience you hold and wait for opportunities to utilize it.

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It’s Okay Enjoy Your Triumphs

That new career move that happens to be your dream job. A timely promotion. Opening your first business. Making your first company acquisition. Landing that tough client. Achieving the forecasted budget.

Take significant time to celebrate and enjoy those achievements. Even when others think you should move on because you’ve already taken a few victory laps. Take 10 more!

Accomplishments like the above are no easy feats. We often don’t take enough time to reflect on the hard work put into it. So don’t let anyone cap the amount of time you enjoy it.

Giving yourself time to be thankful, have gratitude and celebrate the moment provide the emotional fuel we need to move in to the next challenge with confidence.

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Don’t Be Afraid To Share Ideas

We all are afraid at times. Afraid our ideas will come across as small, not well educated or not complex enough to seem impressive.

And if someone thinks this about our ideas then what? It gets disregarded or not taken into consideration. Now the onus is on that individual to come up with something better. Your job is done until your ideas were proven to be of no effect.

This needs to be our thought process when we experience fear in offering our solutions and strategies at work, in creative groups, with business partners, etc.

There’s value in what you have to offer until someone proves otherwise. And if they happen to, you simply try again. professional growth comes with repeating this process over and over.

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A Tip for Self Motivation

In an effort to move forward and accomplish bigger and better, we’re often told to let go of the past or forget about our past failures.

This is true to an extent.

Past shortcomings sometimes inhibit our ability to confidently move forward because of the fear of failure repeating itself.

Alternatively some people look back at failures as an opportunity to learn from it and push them to ‘try again’.

A better tip for motivation is something I practice often.

In biblical times the Hebrews would build an alter at a specific location to remind them of the times God performed miracles in their lives.

When I feel the lack of motivation I usually go back to articles I’ve written that had a lot of online engagement or remember significant accomplishments in my career (like winning awards, etc.).

When you wake up feeling less than inspired to start the day, take time to look back at your past successes. Think about them, and relive the emotions of those moments.

You will be reminded that you have what it takes to execute the next big thing in your life and career.

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It’s Never the End

In 2016 I took a job as a Regional Operations Manager for a large well-known Canadian company. The opportunity for my career growth was apparent. The compensation package was more than sufficient at the time. And after 10 years at the same company, I was ready for a change.

The entire application process was over the phone and online. There was never a face to face conversation and I never asked to see the office before accepting the position. Both rookie mistakes, but I hadn’t changed jobs in a while and my axiousness to move clouded my better judgement.

From the moment I walked into the new office, I knew I had made a huge mistake. I left a great growing company for uncertainty. It was a shot to my gut.

I had two choices. Continue to beat myself up for not doing my due diligence to find out more about the company, or roll up my sleeves and get to work. I chose the latter and ended staying with the company for 1 year.

Even though I eventually decided to leave, there’s a lot I learned and took away from experience. I discovered several skills I needed to build and improve on for my career growth. This role helped me develop them.

Bad choices are never the end. It’s an opportunity to learn, move forward and strengthen the resilience you need to achieve long term success.

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Your Belief System

Do you really believe you can do it?

This is precisely the first question that you need to ask yourself before setting off on the journey to your ultimate goals and dreams

Understand this concept sounds simplistic. But self-doubt is the biggest inhibitor to longterm success.

I know you’ve heard this before and this is nothing new, but understanding the belief system that drives you is vital to seeing things through until the end.

It doesn’t take much to believe you can start a business or begin the process of changing career fields. Maybe even launching a non-profit organization. Passion and excitement for a new pursuit is never lacking. It’s at these times your belief system is working purely off of adrenaline.

But as we all know it eventually wears off and we realize our beliefs weren’t anchored enough to withstand the doubt that comes with unexpected challenges and criticisms from people we know.

For this reason we can never take too much time examining if we truly believe we can accomplish that thing we desire. But belief is more than just emotionally or blindly betting on yourself. It also to some degree need to weight heavily on facts.

Before you start ask yourself these 3 questions:

Essentially how long will this take to achieve? Do I have the necessary time/resources needed to invest in this? How will I track progress?

The last one is the most important. Seeing even small progress can be encouraging at the bleakest moments in the process.

The point is it’s much easier to hold a strong belief system when you’re prepared for the realistic scenarios that may come your way.

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It’s Okay to Chase Perfection

Legendary NFL Football coach Vince Lombardi said it best:

“We will chase perfection, knowing all the while we can never attain it. But along the way, we shall catch excellence.”

Whatever you do today, don’t give only 50%. Make your effort count.

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If Nothing Else, Be Consistant

Today is a big day for me. It’s my 31st post on this blog. It’s significant because it’s also the 31st day straight that I’ve written at least something.

Even though I love to write, doing it consistently has never been easy. It’s been straight up challenging.

I could blame it on my full-time work as a manager or raising a family but in reality, they’re just excuses. Aren’t they?

If we love something enough we’ll find the time to do it right? That sounds like a nice motivation quote found on a greeting card, but it rarely applies in our lives.

A big reason for that is planning. We often want to be successful but don’t really plan around the priorities of our lives to make it happen.

This has been my story for years. Until 32 days ago I finally got it right. I challenged myself to blog. Every, single, day. Whether it was 400 words or 40, I was going to write something. I was going to share my experiences in business, the corporate world, creativity, life and anything else I could think of to inspire.

My motivation was clear: I needed to grow as a writer. What better way than to write every day.

It doesn’t have to be flashy. It doesn’t have to even be that deep. But it needs to be informative, helpful and inspiring. And it needs to be written and posted daily.

Want to be an entrepreneur? An author? A speaker? Web or graphic designer? Find a small step you can take daily towards that goal and commit to it. Track your journey after 31 days and then again after 60 days, and then 90.

We undervalue the power of being consistent, but it’s the very thing that will propel us to achieving our highest potential.

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Embrace Rejection

A couple of years ago I received this email from an editor in response to my pitch application for an open freelance writer position:

“Thanks so much for your submission. Unfortunately, we had a really strong group of writers this time around, so we won’t be able to bring you on board. Good luck with everything, though.”

If you thought that was bad, check out this email response:

“After much deliberation, we have decided to move forward with other candidates whose skills more closely match our requirements at this time. This was a difficult decision and, we realize, most likely a disappointing one for you. We hope that you will look upon the selection process as a valuable experience in your on-going personal and career development.”

You’re probably wondering why I kept these messages. I do it for two reasons. It helps me remember how far I’ve come when I look back at them.

For each of these messages, I have about 20 to 30 other messages telling me how much they were inspired by a piece I wrote or how happy they were with the service the team I lead provided.

Plot twist: I don’t keep these messages. Well, the majority of them anyway.

Why?

Remembering rejection lets me know what I’m made of. Resistance can either build or break. I choose to let rejection build me up to the level that no opportunity is big enough for me to not shoot my shot.

“What if?” is a 50/50 question. At least rejection lets you know where you stand. What you do with that information will determine how successful you decide to be.

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