RobinReborn

Motivational Stories of Hard Work Leading to Prosperity

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That's an interesting topic. It is nearly 1am so I won't answer now, and I am not sure I would inspire others anyway. I answered because no one else had, as I browse through unread content.

Peter

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3 hours ago, RobinReborn said:

Would anybody care to share a story of how hard work paid off in a way that might inspire others?  It can be historical or personal.

I'm sure Greg will be along any minute.

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14 hours ago, RobinReborn said:

Would anybody care to share a story of how hard work paid off in a way that might inspire others?  It can be historical or personal.

Who knows? I'll try, for what its worth.

I started in the computer industry after a 4 yr. stint in carpentry. My future wife loaned me money to attend school. Two years earlier I had attempted to take my life. My future wife had also been my land lady. I came to know her in a mental hospital, my fourth stay.

The first time was 10 yrs earlier at 17 for a year and a half at long term Shepard Pratt, in Baltimore Md. One year and 7 months earlier, after a lifetime of malevolence (while this is germane to any inspiration one might gain, its hopefully sufficient to say physically and mentally vicious) by the sperm donor, on r&r from Nam, retrieved me from a detention center and drove to Walter Reed for a psych evaluation. Under the impression that telling lies is always wrong I answered, "yes", to the Drs inquiry about taking LSD. This paved the course I was to take. So unwittingly, off I went with the Colonel who provided the transportation to Alexandria Mental Hospital. This was essentially a guaranty that I would no longer bother him but is to be construed rather as someone who did not care but was the agent nemesis. 

I spent the first week fighting orderlies who administered high end psychotropics, Stelazine first and then Thorazine with the accompanying side affects. I was kept in seclusion until I appeared as a caged animal and came around in a cold wet sheet pack. From that point my mother was convinced something could never change the schizophrenic stripes I had been labeled with and devoted her limited means to that end. She never realized how damaging her behavior was or could be.

I learned later my father, had spent 3 months refusing to get up from bed, growing a beard and checking out at a similar age, just before he received an appointment to West Point. His doting parents assisted that process. I later attended the graduation of a nephew at West Point and dug up year book entries in an attempt to understand the mind of the person who raised me. I readily identify with the term Comprachico though his attention to detail was lacking. Finally I wrote to him detailing his failed relationship and forever breaking off with him where he characterized his behavior as something better off forgotten and as a self pitying attempt at blame for my own circumstances, a fantastic rationalization when I had sought acknowledgement. He told me I was solely responsible for my own present and future. The longer I nursed grudges and fretted over real or imagined problems of the past, blamed others for my situation and refused to accept responsibility for my own life, the more of my life I waste; unsatisfying and unenjoyable. He said you cant be insulted or put down by another person unless you accept the insult or put down. If I accepted it, theres no use blaming the other person. He closed with maybe we could proceed in an adult relationship. Uh huh, perfect, tell that to a boy after he's been flattened. Fat chance. 

On my own dime and time I studied hard and was rewarded with industry accreditations which ushered in the most challenging, rewarding, highest paying job ever had.  A complimentary example from a former boss, said, "Geoff, over the years, has shown himself to be one of the most dependable employees on our team. This dependable strength of his has driven him to be the most productive employee on our staff. Overall Geoff's value to the next company he works for will be very high. If business decisions would have been different here at 'X", his future was rock solid."

Thank god I had read Ayn Rand at a tender age before any of the consequences of my youth caught up and reared its ugly head. I credit my resolve in part to her, my earnest desire to betterment, an understanding about hard work paying off that I learned playing sports in my youth and an unrelenting style characterized by starting things and finishing them, by not allowing what I felt at the time to interfere with what I had started. In fact, it was only after many years, that I learned how good I was at compartmentalizing and parking bad experiences in favor of better ones. I paid a heavy price for that.

I took a large measure of personal inspiration from enlisted Sgt Frank Kuwea, my 7th grade baseball coach who found me (I didnt know how)under house restriction waiting on family orders to leave Germany. I heard his voice through the wall speaking to the Colonel in steadfast tones. You can imagine. But it resulted in restriction being lifted for the time it took to play a final season game where I pitched and won. That man! I hope that I have or can extend that sort of generosity to another in need. Come to think of it I have. A granddaughter of the man whose life I probably saved called me and thanked me for doing it. 

 

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Damn that sounds rough. The worst mental illness my family has suffered was my Mom's postpartem depression after my sister, her third child, was born. She would not get out of bed and cried all the time. I was four and went to live with my grandparents for a while, but I cannot forget those times.

   

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2 hours ago, Peter said:

Damn that sounds rough. The worst mental illness my family has suffered was my Mom's postpartem depression after my sister, her third child, was born. She would not get out of bed and cried all the time. I was four and went to live with my grandparents for a while, but I cannot forget those times.

   

That would have been depressing, an unfit environment for a kid. Geez, I do hope your Mom recovered.

Thx, I appreciate the empathetic response. It was presented as inspiring, it may have been simply a downer of a way to grow up. I guess that would depend on your perspective though.

I was describing how truancy led to a hospitalization not mental illness.   

The tragic thing is how little has changed in regard to treatment. Mental hospitals, psychiatrists, psychologists and social workers in those 45 yrs with the exception of independent cognitive therapists are terrible.

The result of prescription psychotropic use has emptied the warehouses into the streets. Instead of severing connections to the brain with a surgical procedure, as with prescribed pre-frontal lobotomies, chemical substances are used with often dangerous effects, meant to change brain function which results in alterations in perception, mood, consciousness and/or behavior.

Imagine, well of course, you cant. I'll try. Ever read a story about fear, imprisonment and forced drugging? Betrayal by a parent capable of taking your freedom/childhood away? 

I was stripped naked in an isolation cell and forced to take cocktails of assorted powerful chemicals until after a year 1/2 when I met a set of "professional" criteria allowing me to leave. The criteria were don't be violent or verbally abusive, see a psychiatrist, take the drugs and go to school and pretend that everything is A OK. I could count on one hand the times I spoke about or was asked about my upbringing and why I was beaten or made to feel lower than scum.

I skipped school.

Hows that for a comeback story? )

 

 

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On 6/4/2017 at 9:39 PM, RobinReborn said:

Would anybody care to share a story of how hard work paid off in a way that might inspire others?

RR,

President Trump's story?

Ayn Rand's story?

George Washington's story?

:) 

US history is full of stories like that. It's a shame they are no longer seen that way in this egalitarian cultural nightmare of PC language and diversity against the patriarchy peppered with covert mass manipulation by behavioral-science technocrats for power mongers.

Maybe it's time to bring the inspiration part back. Individuals can do great things. That other crap goes nowhere.

Michael

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On 6/5/2017 at 2:13 AM, Wolf DeVoon said:

I'm sure Greg will be along any minute.

Greg?  Greg?   Jun 11 and no Greg.

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Hard work is not a garantee of success. The serfs in the feudal system worked hard and their lives were brutal, nasty, short. The slaves in early USA worked hard and remained slaves. Most of humanity worked hard until modern labor saving devices. Even in the modern world, you can work hard at unskilled jobs and if you don't rise above that, you are not likely to achieve much. Hard work may be a necessary ingredient for success but by itself is not sufficient. The extra ingredient probably will be some kind of genetic superiority of mind and/or body.

 

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@Michael 

 

I read Art of the Deal, not sure if I'd count Trump's story as success through hard work.

 

I think there's a difference between hard work and good decisions.  Trump made some good decisions early on in business but since entering politics has upset a lot of people and has yet to accomplish anything

 

Ayn Rand's story is better, but most of her hard work came before she wrote the Fountainhead.

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Bobby Fischer had a theory. He said to someone:

"Everyone has genes. I have good genes and you have bad genes. That's why I'm a genius and you are a piece of shit."

 

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2 hours ago, RobinReborn said:

 

I think there's a difference between hard work and good decisions.

 

Playing chess can be described as making decisions. Each move is a decision. But the great chess players work hard.

There is a story about a guy who wanted to take chess lessons from Bobby Fischer. For his first lesson BF had him go thru MCO, Modern Chess Openings, from cover to cover, every page, every comment, every footnote. Three months later (it's a big heavy book), he is back and ready for lesson 2. For lesson 2, BF had him go thru all that again.

Another story about BF is he went to a hideout cabin in the woods and did nothing but study rook and pawn endgames for 3 months. It is said he never lost a rook and pawn endgame after that.

In chess at least, making good decisions takes work. Probably also in real estate. But I wouldn't know; I never did real estate.

 

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4 hours ago, RobinReborn said:

I think there's a difference between hard work and good decisions.  Trump made some good decisions early on in business but since entering politics has upset a lot of people and has yet to accomplish anything

 

Ayn Rand's story is better, but most of her hard work came before she wrote the Fountainhead.

RR,

From your words, I gather you do not equate using your brain while doing hard work with what you call hard work. The way I understand you, a janitor does hard work, but a writer of a thousand page plus philosophical novel has it easy.

Or maybe you mean after a person is set on a course and getting some success, you do not believe they work hard anymore. It's difficult to pin your meaning down, but so far, I get the following impression: nothing it implies has anything to do with reality as I live it.

Ditto for another word you used. In light of your claim that President Trump has not accomplished anything, I have no way to discuss this. If I point to a skyscraper and you say that is not an accomplishment, we are using our words to mean radically different things.

Oddly enough, I've been mulling over this thread to write about it because there are elements all inspirational stories have in common like obstacles, growth, free will and willpower, simple trying and persistence, the ways inspirational stories can be abused for propaganda and advertising, there are even archetypes. But I am going to reserve this for later. I'm not up for discussing something important like this and watching my efforts turn it into a defense of President Trump against bashing. (There's a proper thread for that on OL, one with thousands of posts. You even made the first post. :) )

I will leave you with one archetype since you seem to prefer the downtrodden. How about a wounded warrior? Try this place: Wounded Warrior Project. You can get lots of stories there. When you see totally mutilated wounded warriors who have managed to recover some semblance of a normal productive life through excruciatingly hard work, that has to be inspiring. I don't understand human beings who do not get inspired by that.

Michael

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4 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

RR,

From your words, I gather you do not equate using your brain while doing hard work with what you call hard work. The way I understand you, a janitor does hard work, but a writer of a thousand page plus philosophical novel has it easy.

Or maybe you mean after a person is set on a course and getting some success, you do not believe they work hard anymore. It's difficult to pin your meaning down, but so far, I get the following impression: nothing it implies has anything to do with reality as I live it.

Ditto for another word you used. In light of your claim that President Trump has not accomplished anything, I have no way to discuss this. If I point to a skyscraper and you say that is not an accomplishment, we are using our words to mean radically different things.

Oddly enough, I've been mulling over this thread to write about it because there are elements all inspirational stories have in common like obstacles, growth, free will and willpower, simple trying and persistence, the ways inspirational stories can be abused for propaganda and advertising, there are even archetypes. But I am going to reserve this for later. I'm not up for discussing something important like this and watching my efforts turn it into a defense of President Trump against bashing. (There's a proper thread for that on OL, one with thousands of posts. You even made the first post. :) )

I will leave you with one archetype since you seem to prefer the downtrodden. How about a wounded warrior? Try this place: Wounded Warrior Project. You can get lots of stories there. When you see totally mutilated wounded warriors who have managed to recover some semblance of a normal productive life through excruciatingly hard work, that has to be inspiring. I don't understand human beings who do not get inspired by that.

Michael

Heavy Mental concentration can burn up to 120 calories  an hour.

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10 hours ago, RobinReborn said:

Ayn Rand's story is better, but most of her hard work came before she wrote the Fountainhead.

Most of her hard work came while writing Galt's Speech.

If you mean creative work--there's no reason to think you do (yet)--most of that was behind her by the mid to late 1940s, but not prior to The Fountainhead.

You have on the one hand philosophic creation and on the other artistic. I do not consider (here) any philosophic creation to be all that creative, but that's very argumentative. She always had these two things going on in her head, albeit her strongest bias was to the artistic in The Fountainhead and to the philosophic in Atlas Shrugged. There was much more painting by the numbers in the latter than the former. Plot structure in a novel is analogous to bone structure in a human being. If it shows in a novel you frequently get a grotesquerie effect instead of humanity. Her two best fictional characters avoiding this were Ellsworth Toohey and The Wet Nurse. (Toohey was modeled on a real life person, Harold Laski.)

--Brant

Oh! The irony! The irony!

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I guess pain has to figure into this self-limiting concept of hard work.

Well, Ayn Rand suffered from back pain her entire life--due to prolonged sitting at her writing desk. And she still kept going back to her writing desk up to the end.

But no, she mostly took it easy, right? At least she suffered while she was taking it easy. Huh? :evil: 

Why would anyone think that hard work is not enjoyable by definition? I never understood this. There's a wide spectrum of hard work.

Uh oh...

What is that I detect in the people trying say hard work is one thing and not another?

A subtext?

A hidden meaning?

What could it be?

I wonder if it's this: Hard work is what I do, not what everybody else does. :evil: 

So there. :) 

Apropos, as a former professional musician, I worked my ass off. And I loved every minute of it (until the end when personal issues took over).

Michael

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First I ever heard of her back pain.

I thought she had pain in her shoulders from tension.

--Brant

you got a ref?

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2 hours ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

Brant,

Barbara.

I would have to look it up, though.

Michael

Let it go. It's enough to put in the caveat. If anyone's interested enough anyone can research it out for anyone else's sake.

--Brant

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I don't deny that making decisions or being productive without hard work are important, but they don't inspire me.  Most people are in a position where they have to spend a large portion of their life working on something they don't like.  Some people manage to move past that, and have freedom.  I want to hear how people have done that.  Trump doesn't inspire me because he was born wealthy, some of what he writes in Art of the Deal is useful for average people but most of it isn't.

 

About ten years ago I bought some stock using a stock market simulator.  I checked it recently and I had tripled my money.  I wouldn't say I worked hard to pick the stocks.  Yet if I'd managed to save more money and spend less, I wouldn't have had to work during that period and I could have just lived on my investments.

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14 hours ago, RobinReborn said:

I don't deny that making decisions or being productive without hard work are important, but they don't inspire me.

RR,

I don't understand a certain blindness in this comment.

I don't understand how writing a 1,000+ page philosophy novel is easy work and merely good decisions.

Try it and you'll see exactly what I mean.

:)

I'm serious. Try it. Try writing even a mediocre 1,000 page novel and see if you can do it.

You can't? It's too hard? The work, I mean?

I thought so...

:)

But you said something important that is positive in your statement. You said the word "me."

So rather than making an open-ended request where people have no idea what you mean (especially since you refuse to say it), here's an idea. Why not give people some concrete examples of what inspire you? Then ask for stories about that.

But, puhleeze, try not to diminish great achievements as if you were above it all. I'll be honest. So long as you don't admire the productive mind as something to aspire to, so as long as you believe work is something people innately can't stand, and so long as you believe freedom and work are opposites, I doubt any you will ever be inspired by much anything. Maybe winning a lottery ticket... 

People only work at something they don't like all their lives because they don't have the courage to do what they like to do once they get stuck. This problem is not a liking thing. It's a courage thing. It's scary and facing fear requires courage. 

What's more, it's hard work to figure it out on your own when someone doesn't give it to you with results guaranteed in advance. But then again, figuring it out wouldn't be hard work to you. That would be a good decision, right?

:) 

Michael

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I'm pretty sure I could write a 1000 page novel, it would be a lot of work, I can't focus on it now as I have other priorities in life.  I don't dismiss doing so as not being an achievement, but in practice somebody usually needs to work hard before they can write a book that long.  Rand had enough money to live comfortably for the time it took her to write Atlas.  I don't, neither do most people.  I'm not dismissing anyone's achievements, but I can't be inspired by something that is infeasible for me to do it.  How do you expect to inspire somebody to do something if they don't have the resources to do it?  

 

I thought that turkeyfoot's story was good.  I have a few personal stories I'm hesitant to share.  There are some historical examples like Andrew Carnegie, or Alexander Hamilton or Steve Jobs.

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