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5 quick quotes from books to fuel your day better than caffeine

5 quick quotes from books to fuel your day better than caffeine

You’re driving to work on a cold, rainy Monday, frowning into your nearly-drained Starbucks latte and wishing that it would magically refill itself with one of those handy Harry Potter replenishing spells, or wondering whether or not it’s too early for a bloody Mary.

The pile of paperwork you know you’ll find on your desk is already making your eyes twitch and your head ache. How are you going to drag yourself toward the 5 O’clock finish line?

We’ve all had days like this, and sometimes when we reach into the well of inspiration inside us and find it dry, we turn to other sources—nature, music, or, in my case, books. I’ve always loved the powerful punch that a good quote can deliver to give me a shove forward into productivity.

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The right quote can, at any given moment, encapsulate just what I’m feeling and help me to focus on whatever task is at hand. If you’re running low on motivation juice, here are 5 book quotes to fuel your day faster than caffeine.

1. “Congratulations! Today is your day! You’re off to great places! You’re off and away! You’ve got brains in your head and feet in your shoes, and you can go wherever you choose.”- Dr. Seuss, Oh the Places You’ll Go

If the fact that this book is quoted exhaustively at graduation ceremonies isn’t enough of a motivator, the sheer number of exclamation marks should get you moving. The truth is, every day is your day, to do with as you choose, and Dr. Seuss is reminding us never to waste that potential.

2.“It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”- J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Even if we follow the doctor’s advice, we first have to make a conscious choice to tackle life’s to-do lists. When I teach students to write resumes, I remind them of the basic principle of selling their skill sets: list your abilities in short, action verb-packed bullet points that leap off the page and make your potential employer feel like you’ve gotten the job they want done even before you’ve set foot in the office. Knowing your abilities is one thing. Showing the world what you can do with those abilities separates the wheat from the chaff.

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3. “Waking up begins with saying am and now.”- Christopher Isherwood, A Single Man

The opening line of this novel hooks me every time I read it; hardly surprising when the entire novel strikes at the white hot center of life. Isherwood has packed this beautifully simple sentence with three active verbs that communicate one thing, and one thing only: live. Now.

Isherwood reminds us of the importance of just being, of embracing the moment and telling ourselves that where we are is where we’re meant to be, because unlike Doctor Who, we can’t mess with the time space continuum, and whatever we need to do we can only do in the here and now.

4. “I will not: drink more than fourteen alcohol units a week. Smoke…Get upset over men but instead be poised and cool ice-queen…I will: Stop smoking…reduce circumference of thighs by 3 inches (i.e. ½ inches each)…purge flat of all extraneous matter.” – Helen Fielding, Bridget Jones’s Diary

OK, so anyone who knows Bridget Jones knows she’s better at making to-do lists than accomplishing them, but I always turn to her for motivation, because if nothing else, she reminds me never to bite off more than I can chew, and that life is a work in progress.

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Part of making change in your life, whether minuscule or monumental, involves establishing a plan of attack. Sometimes nothing motivates you to jump into the day more than writing down your goals, large and small, because it focuses you and demands accountability.

5. “I have only resolved to act in that manner which will, in my own opinion, constitute my happiness, without reference to you, or to any person so wholly unconnected with me.”- Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

Four words: preach it, Lizzie Bennet! Sometimes no one dishes out a dollop of life advice better than Jane Austen, and she’s made herself pretty clear here: keep your eye on the prize, no matter what anyone tells you.

And if that prize happens to come bundled with 10 thousand pounds and an estate in Derbyshire, lucky you. Whether the prize is a raise, or a new job, or two-for-one margaritas at happy hour, the promise of a reward is a tried-and-true motivational method. .

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What quotes motivate you? Share your thoughts!

Featured photo credit: Determination via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on November 15, 2018

Success In Reaching Goals Is Determined By Mindset

Success In Reaching Goals Is Determined By Mindset

What do you think it takes to achieve your goals? Hard work? Lots of actions? While these are paramount to becoming successful in reaching our goals, neither of these are possible without a positive mindset.

As humans, we naturally tend to lean towards a negative outlook when it comes to our hopes and dreams. We are prone to believing that we have limitations either from within ourselves or from external forces keeping us from truly getting to where we want to be in life. Our tendency to think that we’ll “believe it when we see it” suggests that our mindsets are focused on our goals not really being attainable until they’ve been achieved. The problem with this is that this common mindset fuels our limiting beliefs and shows a lack of faith in ourselves.

The Success Mindset

Success in achieving our goals comes down to a ‘success mindset’. Successful mindsets are those focused on victory, based on positive mental attitudes, empowering inclinations and good habits. Acquiring a success mindset is the sure-fire way to dramatically increase your chance to achieve your goals.

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The idea that achieving our goals comes down to our habits and actions is actually a typical type of mindset that misses a crucial point; that our mindset is, in fact, the determiner of our energy and what actions we take. A negative mindset will tend to create negative actions and similarly if we have a mindset that will only set into action once we see ‘proof’ that our goals are achievable, then the road will be much longer and arduous. This is why, instead of thinking “I’ll believe it when I see it”, a success mindset will think “I’ll see it when I believe it.”

The Placebo Effect and What It Shows Us About The Power of Mindset

The placebo effect is a perfect example of how mindset really can be powerful. In scientific trials, a group of participants were told they received medication that will heal an ailment but were actually given a sugar pill that does nothing (the placebo). Yet after the trial the participants believed it’s had a positive effect – sometimes even cured their ailment even though nothing has changed. This is the power of mindset.

How do we apply this to our goals? Well, when we set goals and dreams how often do we really believe they’ll come to fruition? Have absolute faith that they can be achieved? Have a complete unwavering expectation? Most of us don’t because we hold on to negative mindsets and limiting beliefs about ourselves that stop us from fully believing we are capable or that it’s at all possible. We tend to listen to the opinions of others despite them misaligning with our own or bow to societal pressures that make us believe we should think and act a certain way. There are many reasons why we possess these types of mindsets but a success mindset can be achieved.

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How To Create a Success Mindset

People with success mindsets have a particular way of perceiving things. They have positive outlooks and are able to put faith fully in their ability to succeed. With that in mind, here are a few ways that can turn a negative mindset into a successful one.

1. A Success Mindset Comes From a Growth Mindset

How does a mindset even manifest itself? It comes from the way you talk to yourself in the privacy of your own head. Realising this will go a long way towards noticing how you speak to yourself and others around you. If it’s mainly negative language you use when you talk about your goals and aspirations then this is an example of a fixed mindset.

A negative mindset brings with it a huge number of limiting beliefs. It creates a fixed mindset – one that can’t see beyond it’s own limitations. A growth mindset sees these limitations and looks beyond them – it finds ways to overcome obstacles and believes that this will result in success. When you think of your goal, a fixed mindset may think “what if I fail?” A growth mindset would look at the same goal and think “failures happen but that doesn’t mean I won’t be successful.”

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There’s a lot of power in changing your perspective.

2. Look For The Successes

It’s really important to get your mind focused on positive aspects of your goal. Finding inspiration through others can be really uplifting and keep you on track with developing your success mindset; reinforcing your belief that your dreams can be achieved. Find people that you can talk with about how they achieved their goals and seek out and surround yourself with positive people. This is crucial if you’re learning to develop a positive mindset.

3. Eliminate Negativity

You can come up against a lot of negativity sometimes either through other people or within yourself. Understanding that other people’s negative opinions are created through their own fears and limiting beliefs will go a long way in sustaining your success mindset. But for a lot of us, negative chatter can come from within and these usually manifest as negative words such as can’t, won’t, shouldn’t. Sometimes, when we think of how we’re going to achieve our goals, statements in our minds come out as negative absolutes: ‘It never works out for me’ or ‘I always fail.’

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When you notice these coming up you need to turn them around with ‘It always works out for me!’ and ‘I never fail!’ The trick is to believe it no matter what’s happened in the past. Remember that every new day is a clean slate and for you to adjust your mindset.

4. Create a Vision

Envisioning your end goal and seeing it in your mind is an important trait of a success mindset. Allowing ourselves to imagine our success creates a powerful excitement that shouldn’t be underestimated. When our brain becomes excited at the thought of achieving our goals, we become more committed, work harder towards achieving it and more likely to do whatever it takes to make it happen.

If this involves creating a vision board that you can look at to remind yourself every day then go for it. Small techniques like this go a long way in sustaining your success mindset and shouldn’t be dismissed.

An Inspirational Story…

For centuries experts said that running a mile in under 4 minutes was humanly impossible. On the 6th May 1954, Rodger Bannister did just that. As part of his training, Bannister relentlessly visualised the achievement, believing he could accomplish what everyone said wasn’t possible…and he did it.

What’s more amazing is that, as soon as Bannister achieved the 4-minute mile, more and more people also achieved it. How was this possible after so many years of no one achieving it? Because in people’s minds it was suddenly possible – once people knew that it was achievable it created a mindset of success and now, after over fifty years since Bannister did the ‘impossible’, his record has been lowered by 17 seconds – the power of the success mindset!

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