Ten Pieces of Inspiration #44

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Each week, I highlight ten things each week that inspired me to greater financial, personal, and professional success. Hopefully, they will inspire you as well.

1. Pumpkins
Pumpkins are sitting on our front step. Our garden has more squash and similar vegetables than we know what to do with. Leaves are falling from the trees.

Halloween - Pumpkins

Yes, October is here. Thanks to Yaxzone for the great picture (better than my own of the pumpkins on our front step).

2. Garrison Wynn on the fear of change
Change is scary and challenging. It involves upending things we hold dear. Yet, quite often, it can result in much better things. What can cause us to do such a thing?

“When the pain of what we are going through becomes greater than the fear of change, we change.” – Garrison Wynn

The trick is to realize just how much pain your current path is causing you and just how little you have to fear from the change.

3. Fitocracy
If you’ve ever wanted a good online motivational tool to push you to exercise, sign up for the beta now. This is a wonderfully well thought out tool that works well no matter what your fitness level. It does a great job of turning fitness into a game.

4. MAKE Magazine’s Youtube channel
I’ve been really looking for fun projects to do with my kids lately, particularly ones that are fun to do and end up with something useful at the end. The wide array of projects available from MAKE Magazine’s YouTube channel have really hit the spot with this.

I particularly enjoyed this video of making a messenger bag out of plastic shopping bags:

5. Aristotle on quality
Doing something well shouldn’t be an unexpected surprise.

“Quality is not an act, it is a habit.” – Aristotle

It should be a standard you live by. Think of all the great people you’ve known and relied on over the years. Quality wasn’t just a one-time act by them.

6. Northern Fantasy by Kseniya Simonova
I’ve linked to this artist’s work before, but I just love it when I find something by her that I’ve not seen before.

I am just stunned at what Kseniya can do with sand and a light box.

7. If by Rudyard Kipling
This is a pretty strong standard to live by.

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream, and not make dreams your master;
If you can think, and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build’em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings, nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

That’s something to aim for.

8. Andrew Carnegie on empty money
Money doesn’t really mean a whole lot if there’s not substance behind the person possessing it.

“There is no class so pitiably wretched as that which possesses money and nothing else.” – Andrew Carnegie

Just being rich isn’t enough to make one a success. I’ve met my fair share of people who never had to struggle for anything and it’s not pretty.

9. New Beginnings
I’m always inspired whenever I see a plant fighting for survival in a completely inhospitable place and winning that fight. There’s no reason that plant should be living there, but somehow it’s making it. Why can’t I do the same?

New Beginnings

Thanks to Ingrid Taylor for the wonderful picture.

10. Smiley Faces by Gnarls Barkley
The song is catchy, but it was the video that really hooked me with this one. It’s basically an encapsulation of the visual identity of popular music and culture during the entire twentieth century, done very tongue-in-cheek. Unfortunately, embedding this video is disabled, so you’ll have to click through to see it.

It’s a few years old now, but I saw it again this week and couldn’t help but put on a smiley face.

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2 thoughts on “Ten Pieces of Inspiration #44

  1. Change doesn’t only have to come from pain. That implies that people are only reacting to their situations, and that’s just not true. There are plenty of people who are proactive, and create change because they want to do something different, or meaningful with their life.

  2. There are several versions of ‘If” for girls too – J.P. McEvoy and Gale Baker Stanton wrote decent versions (the Elizabeth Otis version is outdated).

    I keep forgetting about Make. Thanks for the reminder!

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