Motivating and Inspiring Yourself: Harnessing Quotes

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    How to Manage Your Own Motivation

    Leaders are like everyone else. They must manage for balance in their lives and their work. If the leaders do not seem motivated, then other employees will probably not be motivated either. Therefore, leaders in the organization must give attention to managing their own personal motivation – and it can be managed.

    1. Learn to delegate.

    This is one of the most critical skills for a leader. Delegation involves assigning tasks to your employees along with the necessary authority and resources so that they can learn to carry out the tasks in their own way. Assign the “what” and guide them to figure out the “how.”

    2. Even if you do not like goals, set some goals, however small.

    Without goals, you probably will not know if you are really accomplishing anything. Working hard is not necessarily an end in itself – especially if you expect your employees to do the same thing. Set some small goals. It will be good practice for you if you have not done that before. (If you do not like goals, then you are in for a major challenge in leading a business because, without goals, it is very difficult to give direction and measure success.)

    3. Celebrate accomplishments.

    Many hard-working people seem to believe that celebrating accomplishments is a form of complacency, and that the job should be a celebration in itself. Those beliefs can hold true maybe for the first couple years of the leader’s job. Then the grind gets old. It is critical for employees to recognize that they are accomplishing something – it is usually not enough to be continually “working for the cause.” Take time out to recognize what did get done and celebrate the accomplishments.

    4. Ask for help.

    It can be quite difficult for leaders to ask for help. Often, they are very passionate, hard-working people who want to be able to carry their own load. Thus, they are often reluctant to ask for help from others in the organization. This is a mistake, particularly for managers in the organization.

    5. Find out what motivates you – it is not the same for everyone.

    One of the most important learnings for new supervisors is that very different things can motivate different people. For example, some are motivated by money, others by security, others by having relationships, others by getting things done and others by getting recognition.

    6. Get some direct contact with your customers.

    Few things are as motivational as hearing from a customer how he/she benefited from the products or services of your business. Unfortunately, it is too easy for leaders to inadvertently become detached from providing direct service and to get lost in the management activities of the business. At least once a month, have a customer come to an employee-wide meeting and share his/her experiences with the business.

    7. Post the mission of your business on the walls of all the rooms in your facilities.

    It is amazing how many organizations give careful thought to the wording of their mission statements, and then file them away in file cabinets. Post your mission statement in all the rooms in your facility. Notice it each day. The mission statement depicts the reason that the business even exists.

    8. Follow simple guidelines for time and stress management.

    With a few simple steps, you can make a lot of difference in managing your stress, often by first addressing how you spend your own time.

    9. Watch your diet. Get enough sleep.

    Do not resort to lots of caffeine and sugar to give you a boost. Research shows that the boost is usually followed by a major letdown in energy. It is better to get up for a short walk, get some protein, and do some stretches. Also, it is interesting how bleak the world looks to people who do not eat right or do not get enough sleep. A little bit of the right kind of food and more sleep can make the world seem a lot better.

    10. Get some variety in your job.

    Do not get lost in the “circle of paperwork.” Often, the only way that you will get variety in your work is to schedule it. Schedule time to provide direct services to customers. Schedule time to help clean out the storage closet.

    11. Have personal goals.

    Even if you have a few goals, at least those goals are in regard to your own development. Examples of goals might be to become acquainted with at least three other managers of organizations in your geographic area, read a book a week, or even start a hobby.

    12. Get some professional development.

    Go to a course. Join a professional networking organization. Read professional journals that relate to your services. Join a Speakers Bureau to share your knowledge.

    13. Be sure that your job makes sense to you. Have an overall strategic plan.

    One of the best outcomes of a strategic plan is that it helps to make sense of all of the work going on around people. People get some perspective and, thus, some meaning from their jobs.

    14. Write status reports.

    Status reports can be weekly reports that document what you have accomplished over the past week, any highlights of trends and issues that currently exist, and what you plan to do next week. One of the most important outcomes of this activity is the opportunity to stand back, think about your job, and notice that you are actually getting a lot done.

    15. Understand Founder’s Syndrome.

    This Syndrome can occur with almost anyone in the organization, not just the Founder. It is not unusual that the people who work the hardest in an organization (and are most prone to burnout) are also the people around whom all else seems to revolve. It is hard not to be the “hero” of the workplace, the person who gets everything done. Too often, this hero becomes the unintended villain when the organization succumbs to Founder’s Syndrome.

    16. Know when to leave.

    It may be that you and your job just have to part, that you are simply no longer motivated in your work. It is a wise leader who can recognize this and arrange for a healthy transition to a new leader.

    Various Perspectives on Motivation

    Quotes (inspirational, insightful, etc.)

    The following were provided by Rey Carr of Peer Resources. He notes:

    “Here is a summary of the various sources of quotes we use as well as those suggested by TRDEV members. Most of these are searchable, so you can use them to find an appropriate quote as well as locate the author of a quote. Many of these sources have an e-mail quote system where you can sign up to receive quotes on a regular basis. (Apologies to TRDEV subscribers who suggested a source, but I didn’t include it here.).”

    For the Category of Personal Wellness:

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