Another essay by Earl Nightingale from the How to Completely Change Your Life Series
Your Motivating Desire
DID YOU EVER WONDER where those human dynamos, those people who can pack as much work into one day as most of us do in two, get all the energy and drive that makes them go? Well, the source of drive and energy in human beings is known. It’s the personal excitement that comes from a great motivating desire.
If you ask most people why they get out of bed in the morning and slug away all day on the job, they’ll probably have to think about it a while before coming up with an answer. When they do, it’s usually along the line of “Oh, to pay the rent” or “To put food on the table.” Answers like these aren’t exciting. I belong to the group that thinks life is far too short to be dull. Shelter and food are things we need, but unless we’re living out in the street or starving to death, we’re not up to getting too excited about a place to sleep or something to eat.
Those who have no exciting reason for getting out of bed in the morning may be fine people, but they never seem to accomplish anything out of the ordinary, and they miss a lot of fun and a lot of rewards they could be enjoying. They haven’t the drive to become outstanding because they don’t have a great motivating desire.
The key that unlocks energy is “Desire.” It’s also the key to a long and interesting life. If we expect a person to do something we want him to do, we have to get him excited. And if we expect to create any drive, any real force within ourselves, we have to get excited. We have to decide upon something we desire very much—a goal that fires our imagination with a mental picture of having something, doing something or being something.
In a company we surveyed while preparing these messages, one of the men had won the admiration of all the others. I noticed that he had thorough knowledge of his company, its products, markets and competitors.
He took pains to understand his customers and their problems. These things, along with an easy manner and a good personality, marked him as an outstanding employee. We asked him about all this and he said, “When I came with this company a few years back, I decided to shoot for a manager’s job in one of our districts. I’m doing everything I can to be the kind of man who would have that job.”
Well, that explained it. In his mind he was already running his own district.
The rest of him was merely carrying out the motions that would soon propel him into the job he wanted. Meanwhile, he was enjoying himself tremendously. The mental image of being a district manager so appealed to him that he found all the enthusiasm, energy and drive he was going to need to achieve that position. Everything he said and did in his current job had to conform to the image he held in his mind. He was outstanding because nothing less than his best would fit with the goal he’d picked out.
Of course he’ll get that district managers job and all that goes with it.
People with unusual drive and energy, people who excel, are the ones who have given themselves a mental picture, a goal to work toward. And the amount of drive they possess will always be in exact proportion to the strength of their desire to make that mental picture a reality, to reach that goal.
We don’t have to worry about setting a goal we can never reach; that’s the strange and wonderful thing about humans, something that most people seem to miss. We never seriously desire anything we can’t possibly have. If you get all fired up over something—whether it’s an executive position in your company, or the income you feel you and your family need to do and have the things you want, being the sort of person who makes a real contribution, sets a fine example, helps others on their way up—if you can clearly envision how it will feel to satisfy your desire, well then it can be yours.
Arnold Bennett wrote that the kind of desire that triggers drive and energy within us isn’t some vague hankering, some undefined wish. The productive kind of desire is real, it’s concrete, it’s a mental picture that will never leave us alone. It’s always there in front of our minds, prodding and poking, goading us on. It’s an obsession, a whip. It has no mercy and we’ll never be satisfied until we’ve achieved that which we truly desire.
Well, how about you? What’s your goal? What is it that gets you fired up every time you think about it? If you have such a goal you’ll never have to worry about the drive and energy you’ll need to achieve it. But if you find that you lack drive, that you’re short on energy, give it some thought. Decide upon the dream that’s more important to you than any other. Then begin to make that dream a reality. You can, and you’ll find that you’ve got all the drive you need, all the energy you want.
To achieve your goals in life, create a desire within yourself. Then direct the energy and drive it generates toward getting whatever you want. It’s been truthfully said “What the mind of man can conceive and believe it can achieve.”
It’s a great fact that the average person tends to be set up or somebody doesn’t know, is that each of us has the power and the energy – though we may be unaware of it – to achieve those things and conditions, we want very much.
Energy cannot be created in anyone, but understand that it’s there – in others and in yourself. A great and powerful sleeping giant waiting only to be awakened. The waking agent is desire.
So your desire to attain a worthy personal goal will unleash abundant energy for you. All you’ll need the travel an exciting, interesting, and fulfilling road through life to the destinations of your choice.
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