At the request of multiple readers, it is time to write about more motivational quotes to take on the rest of 2019. Last year I wrote a post where I shared nine extremely effective business quotes, that I knew would help me excell in 2018! From the feedback I received, there were quite a few people who also enjoyed it, and drew motivation from the the post as well. If you missed it, that post is here: "My 9 Favorite Motivational Quotes to Get 2018 Started Right!"
Considering that we are into May already, I shortened the list this year down to five. Not to mention the quotes from 2018 still apply. They are some of my favorites, and I honestly go back and read them quite often. That being said, there is ONE quote that I am going to carry over into this post, as it is one that transcends time. A principle to live by so strong that it will change the direction of your day, week, month, or year.
"Whether you think you can, or think you can't -- you're right."
This timeless Henry Ford quote is a constant reminder of the power of your mindset. Throughout history we have seen examples of innovators accomplishing things that no one thought were possible, until they were!
If you are not familiar with Henry Ford, or just know him as "the car guy", I strongly suggest you go back and learn about his life and what he went through. Not just to become a pioneer in the automobile industry, but a revolutionary in the way he changed workers rights and working conditions.
Henry Ford changed the whole game with his brand new assembly line way of building. He invented the ability to mass produce cars at a rate unseen previously. This was the turning point when cars stopped being a luxury for rich people, and started becoming available to the common family.
More importantly, Henry Ford invented the eight hours a day, five days a week work model. As I mentioned above this was unheard of, but led the way to much improved working conditions for decades to come. **P.S. He aslo paid his workers extraordinarily higher wages than his competitors.** The combination of these innovations led to his immense success!
As I have mentioned in previous posts, I am a huge history buff. Knowing the stories behind such people as Henry Ford and many other giants in the historical business world is a HUGE advantage in building and shaping a business. I strongly believe that it is important to understand the past for multiple reasons.
I am sure you are aware of the quote from Winston Churchill,
"Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it."
Most people don't realize that the original quote came from a European philosopher named George Santayana and was originally written as,
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
While this quote did not make the TOP FIVE list, it does a great job of reminding us that it is important to learn from the past.
All of this being said, the most important reason to understand the past is to learn what actually DOES work. For every Henry Ford there were millions of people who failed. Millions of companies, ideas, and theories that we've never heard of because they were not successful. It's important to remember that while technology has changed the way we market and reach people, what appeals to those same people has changed very little over time.
"Do what you have to do until you can do what you want to do"
If anyone would know what it is like to be able to do whatever they want, it's Oprah Winfrey! But it wasn't always that way of course. This blog post is about motivational quotes and positivity, so I won't go into a full history of Oprah's past, but here are some bullet points of what she "had to do" (go through) before becoming the first black woman billionaire.
Winfrey was born the daughter of an unwed teen
Oprah Winfrey's family was so poor growing up that, as a child, Winfrey was teased at school for wearing dresses made of potato sacks
Winfrey had a son when she was 14 years old who died as an infant
Winfrey was named "Orpah" after the biblical character in the Book of Ruth on her birth certificate, but people mispronounced it regularly and "Oprah" stuck
These are just a few of the obstacles that Oprah overcame. If you would like to learn more fascinating facts about Oprah, you can visit "18 Cool Facts About Oprah Winfrey" by Larry Kim at www.inc.com.
This particular quote resonates with entrepreneurs extremely well. While not everyone has to face the challenges that Oprah did from a very young age, very few people can start a business (of any size) without conquering a ton of obstacles.
One of the main reasons (and there are many) that more people don't go into business for themselves is that they are not willing to go through the "do what you have to do" part of this quote.
"Hustle until you no longer have to introduce yourself"
One of my personal favorite TV shows for the last few years is called "Suits" on the USA Network. If you haven't seen it, it's about an extremely cocky lawyer named Harvey Specter who just happens to also be the best at what he does. He is extremely hard working and doesn't quit until his work is done. There are a ton of quotes from Harvey that are awesome, but THIS one is my favorite.
Even if you don't like the show, if you have seen it, I'm sure you can understand how many of the quotes from Harvey Specter can be used as motivation to an entrepreneur. If you haven't seen the show, I would highly recomend it regardless of what you do for a living, and the link I provided above will take you to where previous episodes can be streamed.
Just because this particular quote comes from a fictional character on a TV show, doesn't make it's meaning, or motivational factor for that matter, any less real.
Not everyone starts their own business to gain money and power. Some small business owners are perfectly happy just to make a comfortable living, while not having to answer to a BOSS. I'm willing to bet you however, that if you ask the same small business owner how it feels to be recognized out in their community, they'll tell you that it's pretty cool! One of the best parts about being a business owner though, is that it gives you the freedom to choose.
"Entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won't, so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can't"
Whether they are motivational, funny, inspiring, or just plain memorable, sometimes the best quotes are either anonymous, or the author is unknown. That is the case for number four on our list this year. That being said, anyone who who has ever started their own business will tell you that this quote is one of the most accurate things ever written.
I mentioned before that there are a number of reasons most people don't end up starting their own businesses. Well this one is also right at the top. The majority of people (who have a choice in how they live) in America aren't willing to sacrifice certain luxuries for an extended period of time once they've already tasted them because of the money they can make with a traditional job.
Now, you might be saying, "how on Earth do you know that?" Or, "Where are your facts to back up such a statement?" When I discuss what is necessary with to be a successful entrepreneur with people, and what most people aren't prepared to sacrifice, I hear many variations of these questions. My rebuttal to this is always the same, and comes very easily. This rebuttal is simply another well known quote (that just missed making the top five for this post):
"If it were easy, everyone would do it"
I suppose this is more of a cliche than a quote. But you know what they say, a phrase can't become a quote without a certain level of truth to it. Plus, no one can deny that if it were easy to start your own business, and there were not extensive sacrifices required, there would be WAY MORE people who would be doing it. The same people that argue with me over this point are the ones who bitch and complain about their cubicles and one hour lunch breaks everyday.
There are a million success stories that have begun with sacrifices that most people aren't willing to make. It is actually inspiring and kind of fun to go and read some of them. Here is an example of one of the stories that hits close to home with me:
“I took a night job to be able to afford to pay my employees for the first 2years that I was in business. I would work at the company from 6:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and the head home to shower and then go to a night job (bartender) from 7:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. I believed in the vision and did anything it took to get the company up and running.” –Donald Raleigh, President, Evolve Systems
I was able to find this, and many more examples at blog.mycorporation.com. This particular blog post is called "What I Sacrificed To Start My Small Business — Experts Weigh In" by Deborah Sweeney.
"Giving up on your goal because of one setback is like slashing your other three tires because you got one flat"
Here is another example of a quote with an unknown source. But much the same as our previous quote, it has stood the test of time due to it's relevance.
For those of you that have read some or all of my posts, you know that I write quite often about how to avoid problems and setbacks when starting and running your business. You also know that I ALWAYS provide a disclaimer stating that despite your knowledge and best efforts, avoiding every problem is simply impossible. You are going to run into setbacks no matter what you do.
This quote most simply boils down to persistence and perseverance. If you read my 2018 motivational quotes blog post you found another of my favorite quotes regarding persistence:
The beauty of this motivational quote is that it plays in all aspects of your life regarding goals, not just business. Sure, my main goal is to provide business insights to help make your particular struggle a little bit easier, but hang on to this one for more than just business motivation.
As always, thank you so much for taking the time to read this post. It is humbling when someone takes the time out of their schedule to recognize something that you worked to put together for them. PLEASE Comment, and More Importantly SHARE!