Joe Rutland understands that even at 50 years old chasing dreams is possible and noble.
Let’s face it. Every person usually has some dreams or goals for their lives. Whether it is dating, staying fit, writing a best-selling book, becoming a successful entrepreneur, gaining more education or being a better parent to your children, these are all precious and attainable goals.
Motivation and achievement are looked upon quite highly in the world. Of course, these two elements either can be used for good or ill depending upon a person’s mindset. If motivation and achievement are solely based around getting back at someone from that inner place of anger and resentment, then it’s not that healthy. On the other hand, if they come from a place where it not only helps you and leads toward supporting and nurturing others, then that’s a win-win situation.
Honestly, I’m still a work in progress on this stuff. Yet I am willing to do the inner work … the soul work, as I like to put it … around motivation and achievement. Yes, I do have dreams for a better life. Even at 50 years old, I do believe that I have better days ahead.
What qualities have I learned about in regard to motivation and achievement? Here are five key touchstones that keep me pushing my needle forward.
Stay positive. Yeah, yeah, I hear some of you. “Stay positive. Look into the sky. Count your blessings. Weren’t you the same dude talking about money recently?” Why yes, I am that same man. Developing a positive attitude and mindset, even with the outer part of life crumbling down, does take work. Also, I do believe there is something to an adage that positive energy can attract opportunities, possibilities and dreams that come true. It has happened to me. Glimpses of results from staying positive, like a better-feeling physical state or a more sane and serene inner state, are results from cultivating positivity. No, I don’t live on a high cloud and dance with unicorns every day. Trust me, there’s enough crap that can literally pull me into my hole and keep me there. I’m human. The bottom line, though, is staying positive can definitely help more than staying negative.
Believe in yourself. Honestly, if anyone is going to support yourself on this path of motivation and achievement, then it has to start with you and I. There is something scientifically to be said for … yes … positive thinking. It does work and has merit, yet one must strive to work on their thought life consistently. Believing in myself and that what I offer as a human being does have merit is so important to get and understand. Having faith and belief in myself that I can really overcome a lot of obstacles (self-made or otherwise) does bring me into a better state of motivation and achievement. The same can happen for you, too.
Learn and grow. If I only stick with the head knowledge that I learned 25 years ago and live life accordingly, then it might work for a bit before breaking down like a bad used car. Reaching 50 years old does not mean that I have all the answers. Yet the rubber meets the road by simply stating that I want to learn about something … whether it is writing better, Internet marketing, having a healthy relationship, building a healthier body … and taking action on those proclamations. Education is a powerful tool for self-discovery and supporting others in their own life paths. When you learn, you grow. I do, too. It is really possible, no matter what age you are, to tap into those inner resources and become more aware of life’s greatest blessings.
Keep your head up. After seeing myself and many others lose their jobs when The Houston Post newspaper was shut down in 1995, I hit a low point. I’d reached my personal dream of working at a major metropolitan newspaper in a large city at 29 years old … only to see it taken away. There were outside family stressors in my own life during the 15-plus months I was there that, literally, sucked a lot of the joy of that experience from me. It was hard to keep my own head up. A month or so after the shutdown, I met a grizzled veteran recruiter in Houston who talked honestly and openly with me. He said this: “Don’t let the bastards get you down.” My sense is that he was talking about finding work, obviously, but also about life itself. It’s worth it, though, to keep my head up … and the same can be said for you, too.
Be faithful in the process. Understand that where you are today doesn’t have to be where you are 5, 10 or 15 years from now. Being faithful to learning more about motivation and achieving whatever goals you and I have is an incredible journey. Taking a hard subject, like learning a new skill or building a business, and breaking this down to bite-sized steps allows you and I to be faithful to our hopes and dreams. There’s no “let’s eat the whole Whopper at once” scenario going down. No, it’s OK to take small steps toward big dreams. That is called making progress. As you and I do this, we are being faithful in this process. The process feels like it never will end and, when it comes to motivation and achievement, there always is room to learn more. Stay faithful, though, and watch what amazing possibilities open up. Some people call them miracles.
Here’s hoping that you take these suggestions, use them as a starting point or points, and find your own beautiful path to motivating yourself and others while achieving mastery in many areas of life.
If all this is just too much for you to handle, then try this out. Sit down. Breathe. Shut the TV and cellphone off for 10 minutes. Be present with yourself and leave yesterday’s mistakes and tomorrow’s fears alone.
Just take it easy. You and I are worth it.
Photo: Elvert Barnes/Flickr