Your Own Magnificent Obsession Denis Waitley

All enduring motivation must ultimately come from within the individual. That is why the words empower and envision are so vital to team performance. It must be your inner power and your own personal vision that propels you, not that of your leader.

The success of your efforts depends not so much on the efforts themselves, but rather on your motive for doing them. The greatest companies and the greatest men and women in all walks of life have achieved their greatness out of a desire to express something within themselves that had to be expressed, a desire to solve a problem using their skills as best they could. This is not to say that many of these individuals did not earn a great deal of money and prestige for what they produced. Many did. But the key to their successes was that they were motivated more by an inner magnificent obsession, a passion, than by any thought of profit or identity.

You may recall from history that the exquisitely beautiful armless statue of Venus de Milo was carved by an unknown sculptor. When a farmer dug up the soon-to-be world-famous work of art while plowing his field, a renowned museum curator sadly reflected what a great pity it was that the sculptor would never be recognized by thousands of admirers, nor would he or she ever know how valuable the statue became hundreds of years later.

The farmer retorted that it must have been a labor of love for someone to be able to have envisioned such perfection and brought it forth with just a chisel and a shapeless piece of stone. “Just creating something of such quality,” said the farmer, “would have been payment in full for me.”

You can’t commission a masterpiece. Human greatness can’t be externally motivated. It must be compelled from within. A magnificent obsession is the way you want to live, not just the things you want to own. A magnificent obsession is the person you want to be, not the title on your office door or business card. A magnificent obsession is the mindset that you have, not the diplomas or awards you earn. It is the worldview you claim as your own, not the collection of stamps on your passport. It is uniquely yours, like your fingerprint or handwriting.

Ask yourself this question: “If it weren’t for money, time and personal responsibilities, what would I really love to do with my life?” You and I need to answer it from our own individual perspectives, not simply answer “to help my company, family or country.” In addition to these shared visions, autograph your career and life with your own signature.

By personalizing your passion, you will experience the unlimited power from within!
Denis Waitley

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