“It’s 6am and your hand can’t make it to the alarm clock before the voices in your head start telling you that it’s too early, too dark, and too cold to get out of bed…
(but) there was a reason you set that alarm in the first place. So sit up, put your feet on the floor, and don’t look back because we’ve got work to do. Welcome to The Grind!”
So begins a brilliant commercial from Nike called Rise and Shine. A lot of people will relate to that first sentence. This kind of motivational therapy is what I have been eating up since the beginning of 2013, when I began a campaign to fight off the effects of old age. I decided to run regularly and get myself fit and healthy again.
In many walks of life people are competitors. They strive; they sometimes fail; they are criticised, but they brush themselves off and try again. They continue to work toward success. This belief was crystallised when I came across the following great quotation from a speech by Theodore Roosevelt, delivered at the Sorbonne in Paris on April 23rd, 1910:
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
I found my personal motivation from a Nike Commercial and a 100 year old speech from an American President. You might find your motivation from other sources – athletes, explorers, writers, poets – there are endless sources to motivate us to strive, to do our best, to keep improving, to never give up.