What do you do? I asked a man I met the other day. “Oh, I teach motivation,” he said. What do you teach? I asked him. “I studied management,” he said, encapsulating it in a mini bio-data.
I do not know much about motivation and I am not a management sort of guy, but I have always been labouring under the thought that the best way of motivating yourself is by teaching yourself the know-how.
But you may think differently. You may want to be fired by people who come down a-charging and telling you about their rich Dad, poor Dad, and they do charge you a lot of money.
Or you may want to listen to people who are dentists in real life tell you how to get up and go. Not that I have anything against dentists, just that the late Tan Sri Ghazali Shafie once told me that he once gave a talk to a lot of dentists in Bangkok, and you know, these people, he said with a glint in his eye, “they have a lot of pull”.
Not a day passes without my receiving in the post stuff from people who have themselves made several hundred thousand in share dealings or horse racing or Internet trading, and they would like to tell you how to do that too. For a sum of money, of course.
Now, if I have made a neat sum of money I think I’d be too tired to go into the rigmarole again of making more of the stuff by stuffing letters into envelopes and mailing them to people I do not know because I’d rather be spending my days sipping tea and watching the sun setting behind the homes of all those people who still do the things that I no longer have to do.
And that’s the only bit of motivational advice you’ll get from me: if you want to watch the sun set, do what you think is appropriate, move to the tropics, but don’t expect a man who’s been stuffing envelopes to tell you how.
And don’t listen to millionaires, property speculators, who claim to have made thousands and millions, who have enough money in the bank as to make the managers quake in fear of having their safes overflow.
And yet they still have to travel down the road, or across the world, to be jet-lagged and to charge you hefty fees just so they can tell you how to make money like they do.
Never trust a person who has made a lot of money, I say. Just look at the US of A, they have an ex-junk bond dealer guy as their presidential wannabe, and the amount of garbage that is spewing out of his mouth is unbelievable.
But thankfully for him, there is still the one motivational message that he has delivered to us all, and that is, the mere sight of his tonsorial state will make us believe that never again shall we believe that we can ever have a bad hair day.
But having said all that I must add that what we need more of nowadays is more people who are here not to motivate us, but to inspire us, because such people are becoming a rarity.
Good people, honest to goodness people, motivated people (and hey, there’s the word) who do their work not only because that’s their job but also because they want to do it well.
Doing a job well is the best motivation you can ever have, the fulfilment you get from it is beyond money, the benefits you bring to other people is incalculable.
Just think about it: I have a poor Dad who taught me that, and when he went he left me sweet nothing, but I think he has left me plenty.
The second example you need is honesty. Why, honesty is rare but catch it whenever you can, especially when other people are not looking. It makes you sleep better to start with, and that’s as good a start to motivation as any.
Early to bed and falling asleep easily without the worrisome burden of thinking where it will all go, who is looking after it, will it multiply tomorrow.
And besides, being honest is a virtue. We may have forgotten that; many around us have and look at the damage they have brought upon us.
Look at all the unpleasantness that have come upon us from bad planning, corrupt practices, dishonest dealers. We should be teaching ethics, not motivation at school.
We must have, above us, not celebrities with their duff motivations but people of integrity. We so badly need role models. Wan A Hulaimi NST Opinion Columnist 13 December 2015