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InspirEmail No 195 - November 22, 2010 - Needing a Nudge 
'Inspirational messages to refresh the spirit and boost the emotional bank account'

Needing a Nudge

A wiser person than I once said that humans have four basic needs. One is the need to be nurtured. Next is the need to be needed. Third, the need to be noticed and finally, the need to be nudged.

Although I never had much luck nudging my own children, I've often thought of a story about a small boy who could not be nudged to quit banging a drum. Various attempts were made to do something about quieting the child.

One person told the boy that he would, if he continued to make so much noise, perforate his eardrums. This reasoning was too advanced for the child, who was neither a scientist nor a scholar.

A second person told him that drum beating was a sacred activity and should be carried out only on special occasions.

A third person offered the neighbours plugs for their ears; a fourth gave the boy a book; a fifth gave the neighbours books that described a method of controlling anger through biofeedback; a sixth person gave the boy meditation exercises to make him placid and docile. None of these attempts worked.

Eventually, a wise person came along with an effective motivation. He looked at the situation, handed the child a hammer and chisel, and asked, 'I wonder what is inside the drum?' Then there was no more problem!

I agree that we sometimes need to be nudged. At times, we may need to be nudged into healthier behaviours. Or maybe nudged out of destructive relationships or patterns. Or simply nudged to think a little bigger; to do or be a something more challenging and less mediocre. No doubt, that is why the motivational industry is so successful. (And no, it is probably not true that if you listen to your motivational tapes backwards you will become a failure. I think a couple of you may have been worried about that.)

It seems to me that good leaders know about this basic human need to be prodded, challenged and encouraged. They also know that the best way to nudge someone is often simply to invite them along a path that is more appealing than the one they've chosen. The best leaders teach us to dream and tempt us to do more than we ever thought possible. They challenge us to be a part of something great.

Writer Antoine de Saint-Exupery said, 'If you want to build a ship, don't drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.'

Sometimes all we need is a nudge to desire something magnificent. Is this the nudge you need?

Written by Steve Goodier

Steve Goodier publishes This is Your Life Support System, a free e-newsletter sharing life, love and laughter. For Steve’s contact details please visit . . . Positive Inspirational Links >>>


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Be willing to learn, and a teacher will appear. Be willing to work, and numerous opportunities for making a valuable, positive difference will come your way.

Your willingness is a key that unlocks life's abundance. Your willingness helps opens your eyes to and prepares you for whatever you are willing to be or to do. Your willingness is not merely what you say it is. True willingness resides in the deepest part of who you are. Be willing, and you will gain access to whatever you need to get the job done.

Be willing, and you will find a way. Many things seem out of reach only because you imagine them to be. Have the courage to be sincerely willing and the impossible can become real.

Be willing to make a difference in each moment and your world will overflow with possibilities. Be willing to experience a life of richness and fulfilment, and that is precisely how it will unfold.

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- Inspirational Quote -

You get the best efforts from others not by lighting a fire beneath them, but by building a fire within
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