The Power of Words – A Tribute to One of a Kind

Words make a difference. And last week we witnessed the passing of a man who built his life around motivating and inspiring millions through the words he chose and the simple homilies he shared in his unique ‘down-home’ style of delivery. One of my favourite pieces of advice attributed to this man is this… “You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”

Zig Ziglar, who was born the tenth of twelve children in the back blocks of Alabama, started life as a humble pots and pans door-to-door salesman and from there he embarked upon a hero’s journey that would lead him around the world and into the hearts and minds of millions who have since been inspired by his simple wit and wisdom. He shared his deep faith with whomever cared to listen and he had an unquenchable belief in the power of a loving and generous heart. He never took a backward step from standing firm in what he believed and it was testament to the man and his legacy that Zig’s final Facebook post attributed to him on Tuesday, the day before his passing was… “Where you start is not nearly as important as where you finish.”

Given that I specialise in the study of language and how it tells us so much about the nature of our personal motivation, it is fitting that I devote this blog to the memory of a man who was a master at crafting words to motivate others. In my humble opinion, there was no better exponent of the use of the ‘aphorism’ than Zig Zigler. He was peerless in his ability to produce a succinct statement, often couched in humour, expressing a general truth that resonated again and again the more one reflected on it. There are many great men and women who have gone on to become inspiring leaders in their own right who may first have been touched in some way by what Zig had to say, so his legacy will undoubtedly live on through their work. For the remainder of this blog I would like to share with you a small sampling of some of the wisdom of Zig Zigler attributed to him via numerous posts on his Facebook site…

  • What you get by achieving your goals is not nearly as important as what you become by achieving your goals.
  • Look back in forgiveness, forward in hope, down in compassion and up with gratitude.
  • Among the things you can give and still keep are your word, a smile, and a grateful heart.
  • There are no traffic jams on the extra mile.
  • You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.
  • Money will buy you a bed but not a good night’s sleep; a house but not a home; a companion but not a friend.
  • When you throw dirt at people, you’re not doing a thing but losing ground.
  • We don’t meet people by accident. They are meant to cross our paths for a reason.
  • I honestly believe I have felt your feelings. I have walked in your shoes. You have made some mistakes, and you may not be where you want to be, but that has nothing to do with your future.
  • F-E-A-R has two meanings. 1. Forget Everything and Run or 2. Face Everything and Rise. The choice is yours to make.
  • You are the only person on Earth who can use your ability. It’s an awesome responsibility.
  • You were designed for accomplishment, engineered for success, and endowed with the seeds of greatness.
  • When you do the right things in the right way, you have nothing to lose because you have nothing to fear.
  • The foundation stones for a balanced success are honesty, character, integrity, faith, love and loyalty.
  • Remember that failure is an event not a person.
  • People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.
  • If God would have wanted us to live in a permissive society, He would have given us Ten Suggestions and not Ten Commandments.
  • If you go looking for a friend, you’re going to find they’re very scarce. If you go out to be a friend, you’ll find them everywhere.
  • It’s not what you’ve got, it’s what you use that makes a difference.
  • There has never been a statue erected to honour a critic.
  • If you can dream it and believe it, you can achieve it.
  • Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalise on what comes.
  • Desperate times call for desperate measures… stronger faith.
  • Only God can turn a mess into a message, a test into a testimony, a trial into a triumph and a victim into a victory.

Vale Zig Ziglar. 1926-2012

What’s your favourite quote of Zig Ziglar? Please share it with us.

Until next time… Let’s seek to understand more and judge less. Have a great week – Brian

Precision Profiling – What Makes You Tick? Through ‘Motivational Fingerprinting’ we uncover what you do, how you do it and why you do it, and most importantly, the unconscious patterns that lead to your success, and that of your staff, so you can spend more of your time doing the things you are best suited for and less on the things you aren’t.

About Brian Clark

Brian Clark is the principal director of Precision Profiling®.

He is a renowned practitioner, writer and speaker on building total customer cultures; values driven leadership and world best practice strategy and implementation.

He has been a guest lecturer on world best practice for the executive management programme at Monash University’s business college (Mt Eliza campus); an adviser to and key note speaker for the Singapore Productivity Association and a consultant to many major Australian and overseas corporations and government departments.

Read more about Brian Clark Here

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