Recently I was reminded of how motivation to achieve anything needs to be followed-up by persistence. At any task for anyone to achieve a goal there needs to be this never die, never let go, never give up attitude. A mixture of patience and will. Persistence.
I’ve experienced this reality throughout my life and have been teaching my children this principle preparing them for their challenges ahead. Nothing serves as a better example for kids than teaching them how to tie their shoes. My wife and I have recently taught our 7-year old son how to tie his shoes. And while as parents we need to remain patient, it’s important to show your child that this is something they can do and all they need is a will to do it. Persistence. To keep trying, to not give up, to know they will be able to do it!
As I’ve witnessed my son tying his shoes by himself I can also see this sense of achievement in his eyes. That is also what persistence does: it encourages and builds self-esteem, motivating you to take challenges head on.
What is it that you are going through that requires persistence? I’m here to tell you you can do it with patience and will. Don’t give up!
One of the most important catalysts to living a life fully motivated is to love ourselves. Being comfortable in your own skin is much more than just self-confidence, it’s self-assurance that we are already on the right track to achieve all that we were made for. Living motivated to being all we want to be comes from a sincere sense of knowing we are beautifully made, inside and out. When we find that truth we are free to move ahead in our journey.
In modern society the external plays a big part in attributing favor to achievement. Almost as if one needs to look a certain way to be all they are aiming to be. It’s that way from early childhood until our hair turns grey… or falls off. There is this appearance of success, this look of confidence, this way one must be and react. It is true for both men and women.
I too have been sucked into this way of thinking. But there is something about having children that allows for some clearer understanding of reality. We all nod to agree that the inside is more important than the outside, but it is only when you pour out your life for another that you understand that the external is only subjective. That true beauty is inside.
Having a little girl makes this concept come to life like nothing before. In a world that materializes women to look a specific way, I want to encourage my little girl to know that she is beautiful beyond her looks. Inside lies her strength. And inside, her beauty will shine brighter to give her the comfort and confidence to be who she was meant to be.
I saw this ad for Dove recently and found it compelling enough to share. The reality is that we are all too hard on ourselves. I’ve seen it with myself and I’ve seen it with my family and friends. When we find peace in our own skin we accept our inner beauty and are free to live life fully motivated. That is what I want for my little girl.
It can happen to anyone, anywhere. It doesn’t matter the color of your skin, your gender or social status. It can happen at home, at work, in the park, in the grocery store. To me and my family it happened in the emergency room. When reality checks in, you pay attention.
Two nights ago I found myself in the emergency room as my oldest son was taken in for a head scan after he fell head first on a concrete floor. We had just arrived at a friend’s house and when he fell his cry expressed real pain. I remember checking his eyes and checking his head, but from that point until we arrived in the emergency room it is all a blur to me. All I know is that in that moment I stood as a pillar of strength and comfort to my wife, who cried with concern for our child, and to my oldest son who showed some discomfort when arriving at the hospital.
I stood strong but not on my own: family and friends lifted prayers and assisted us when needed; medical staff showed expertise and sensitivity to our concern; God was present! After a CT scan the results came back with good news that all was okay with our 7 year-old. In that moment I found relief. But today, I found peace. Not so much in the passing of 72 hours since doctors encourage you to monitor your child (all is well thankfully). But because of all that I have learned. Reality check!
I stood tall and strong in a moment of despair for my family. But to be honest, it all happened so quickly it was natural and unexplainable. All I know is that in that moment I was ready. I felt the calling of my position as a husband and father not based on rushed adrenaline but because of who I am. In that moment the projects and reports at the office didn’t matter, the plans for our backyard didn’t come up, and the desire for a shiny new toy this Christmas didn’t even cross my mind. In that moment I understood my place on this earth. No, the trivial didn’t matter but the experiences of past prepared me to be a better husband and a better father. The intentional acts prepared me for the natural ones. And today’s peace is encouraging for the future. A motivation to focus on what is important.
I was ready and I delivered. So many years and months caring for them, loving, nurturing and being there for them. It was all natural. I won’t take the blessing of having my child with me each and every day for granted. I’ll enjoy each moment of fun with a healthy family by my side. I’m a husband and father, and I’m blessed. And this reality is much more fulfilling than the neighborhood you live in, the car you drive or the work you do. Indeed, I’m blessed.
I thought December was supposed to be a slow month, unless of course you work in retail. Fortunately or unfortunately, long gone are the times when December was a month to file documents and close out on the year. Now December is much more of a review and plan month. This means more meetings, more setting of goals, and more creation of plans aimed at making the next year as successful or even more than this year. I can sense my stress level increasing just as I write this post.
I’ve felt this busy since the beginning of the month and as motivated as I am for doing great work at the office, I’m looking forward to Christmas and enjoying some time off with my family. Which led to the question: How can I prioritize my work in such a way that I’m set for success? And success here is both professional, by accomplishing my goals and planning objectives, as it is personal, being able to truly log off while on vacation. These are great motives to engage in productive work. So, since this time of the year can be stressful it’s important to recognize that pure motivation at work requires clear prioritization.
The below tips have helped me time and time again, and I wanted to share with others.
- Make a list of all your tasks – this is the first and most important step. Understanding all of your responsibilities and expectations is key to being productive at work and truly resting when away from the office. I do this every week and in many cases more than once as more responsibilities are added to my plate or new projects initiated.
- Identify deadlines – this is crucial for ranking your tasks in a list of to-do’s. Whether self-imposed or given to you, knowing your deadlines allows you to be in control of your work load with a sense that you dictate the order of your tasks.
- Being realistic to oneself and others – don’t be fooled by this tip as in today’s worlds we all want to be heroes with the sense that the busier we are the more important and more impactful we tend to be; what a lie. Being realistic allows you the peace to know you are doing your best and engaging yourself and others around you with clear expectations of the work you are doing. Being realistic has required me to ask for deadline extensions or assistance from peers. And don’t be shocked, recently I even have said no to certain requests. I know some of you cringe at this but you know you need to do it as well.
The cool thing about these tips is that they can help at work and at home. Whether you are finishing projects at work or planning a Christmas party, these tips allow you to remain motivated and eliminate your stress.
As part of the vision for 2motive8, be on the lookout for work and career related posts with the category #MotivateAtWork.
The most pure source of why I do what I do is love! Love for my family, for my and children; love for my friends, the ones that have jumped in and helped me when needed; love for the people I’m meeting, being a source of encouragement and support even without knowing what they are going through.
The latest song from Switchfoot says it best with a simple yet true message: Love is worth it. It is worth the pain, toil and sickness.
One of my favorite verses is how it describes the finding of oneself through the open road. The path each decision carries can be scary. But the fear of the unknown can be lifted when we choose love.
The sound is nostalgic and reminds me of my own decisions…
I choose love when I denied a job opportunity for the sake of spending more time with my children.
I choose love when I took a step in faith and moved to a new country with the desire to start a family with my wife.
I choose love when during my teenage years, still in colleague and against all recommendations, I decided to propose and marry an amazing woman.
I choose love when in a youthful night I jumped in the ocean to accept Christ as my savior.
Growing up in a house where your father is a history buff helps you understand the world differently. My dad was especially fond of world history and the man that shaped society. Nelson Mandela was one of his favorite leaders. I grew up admiring him as well after hearing of his quest for freedom in South Africa.
As the first black president in South Africa, he was instrumental in uniting a nation after years of segregation (apartheid). A man of examples that showed a pure balance between the sense of drive and being called. His desire was not one for wealth, recognition or power; his desire was to establish a country where its people were treated fairly. His motivation was pure
The sense of unity was in full display as he supported the South African National Rugby team to a World Cup in 1995, and as he championed the first african country to host the FIFA World Cup in 2010.
Thank you Madiba.