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Enthusiasm – The Driving Force Behind Every Achievement

Photo credit: Wdroops via Photopin, CC

Enthusiasm is the all-essential human jet propellant. It is the driving force which elevates men to miracle workers. It begets boldness, courage; kindles confidence; overcomes doubts. It creates endless energy, the source of all accomplishment.

“Every great movement in the annals of history,” said Emerson, “is the triumph of enthusiasm.”

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It is derived, that magic name, from two Greek words: “en” meaning “in” & “theos” meaning “God.” Enthusiasm is literally “God in us.” The enthusiastic man is one who speaks as if he were possessed by God.

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Then there is the true story of Madame Modjeska, the Polish Tragedienne, who was a guest at an evening party. The admiring company pressed her for a recitation from some play. She at first declined on the ground that memory might not serve her without the accustomed stage settings, lights, etc. However, the guests insisted so insistently that she finally acquiesced, announcing she would recite in her native tongue. Her hearers sat listening to her, spellbound. Some who were there were even moved to tears. When she finished she was asked the name of the touching story she had related.
She smiled & said, “I counted in Polish to one hundred.”

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The famed naturalist, Luther Burbank, kept a guest book in which he invited all callers to write their names, their addresses, & their chief interests in life. When Edison autographed Burbank’s book, he wrote in the column headed “interested in”–with no hesitation whatever–the word “everything” & followed it with an exclamation point.

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Beware of singing as if you were dead or half asleep! Lift up your voices with strength. Be no more afraid of your voice now, or more ashamed of its being heard, than when you sang the songs of Satan.–John Wesley

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We won’t go far without enthusiasm, but neither will we go far if that’s all we have.

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Don’t worry about the job you don’t like. Someone else will soon have it.

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The fellow who is fired with enthusiasm for his work is seldom fired by his boss.

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Enthusiasm is contagious–& so is the lack of it.

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Enthusiasm has a great cloak which can conceal lame talents, dwarfed ambitions, & mangy personalities. It has a sparkle like sunlight on rippling waters & can cause dedicated failures to be delightful.

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All through the ages the most worthy characters have been those who were dynamically enthusiastic over some definite aim & end. The young man who is afraid to manifest enthusiasm lest his dignity suffer is not likely to have much dignity to lose by & by. Enthusiasm is the propelling force that is necessary for climbing the ladder of success.

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An agency executive has compiled a list of fail-safe phrases, or comments, which automatically throw the brakes on enthusiasm. You’re feeling pretty fired up about some idea, he says, & then one of these phrases drops into the conversation like a policeman into a party. The list includes: “Might be better if”, “I like it–it’s just that”, “See your point, but”, “Let’s look at it this way”, “Our usual procedure is”, “How would we justify it?” “How would it look?” And also, of course, “Yes, but”, “No, but”, “Maybe, but”, & “Let me sleep on it”.

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Apathy can only be overcome by enthusiasm, & enthusiasm can only be aroused by two things: first, an ideal which takes the imagination by storm, & second, a definite intelligible plan for carrying that ideal into practice.–Arnold Toynbee

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Both enthusiasm & pessimism are contagious. Which one do you spread?

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I don’t know about having too much zeal; but I think it is better the pot should boil over than not boil at all.

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The great composer does not set to work because he is inspired, but becomes inspired because he is working. Beethoven, Wagner, Bach, & Mozart settled down day after day to the job in hand with as much regularity as an accountant settles down each day in his figures. They didn’t waste time waiting for inspiration.

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Photo credit: Wdroops via Photopin, CC

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