Have you ever noticed how some leaders are inspiring with their speeches while others don’t make you want to cross the street to put a fire out? Let’s take the Return of the King. Who wasn’t pumped up when King Theoden motivated his cavalry to attack the army of Mordor outside of Minas Tirith? I was and it still makes my arm hair stand on end after almost 20 years. Then the end of the movie comes Aragorn with his lackluster speech before the gates of Mordor. I didn’t feel it.

Having given my fair share of speeches, blocks of instruction, and various briefings throughout my Army career I learned a thing or two about motivation. The other week I was feeling totally overwhelmed. Every time I crossed an item off my to do list I added 5 more. The work seemed endless and all of it kept me from actually writing. I was frustrated. Then I read a tweet from a lady complaining about how she just wanted to stop writing forever.

My Army blood boiled. I have never believed in being sympathetic. Its a useless emotion that doesn’t fix or change anything. I have never had sympathy for anyone or anything- including myself. If I have a problem I need to fix it to make it better, not whine about it. All it took for me to get out of my slump was reading that one sentence from a stranger. Good things started happening almost immediately after.

My Monday message to you is to get out of your feelings and get back in the fight. Wars aren’t won by ignoring the problem and cowards die in shame. At the end of the day, you are responsible for your own success. Reach out and take it. Immortality awaits.

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