10 Overused Motivational Phrases

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Everyone enjoys inspirational phrases. They can give you the extra umph you need to get through the day. But do they really help? Are one-liners you read on Twitter repetitive garbage? This post will highlight 10 of the worst offenders. I’m guilty of using all of these lines.

1. Step out of your comfort zone.

Most people only pay lip service to this piece of advice.  Do you make a point of regularly stepping out of our comfort zone?  Human beings are creatures of habit, and it’s far easier to maintain the status quo.

2. Quit your job and travel the world like a vagabond.

There’s nothing wrong with leaving your 9 to 5 behind and exploring the world.  However, it creates the illusion that your problems will go away. It convinces you that your problems are external, and leaving will solve them. Your baggage will follow your wherever you go.

3. Say what you mean.

Do you say what you really mean? It sounds sexy. When’s the last time you dropped an F-bomb in public? Have you given someone a piece of your mind lately? Odds are you are holding something back.

4. Stop trying to please everyone.

This one is cute. If you waste your time and energy pleasing others you will end up with nothing left for yourself. If we were serious we’d have a lot more free time. Instead people spend countless hours doing shit we don’t want to do.

5. Focus your energy.

This is a great piece of advice. By focusing your energy you become more efficient.  Getting rid of unimportant tasks is a wonderful way to become successful, but who does it?  How many hours a day do you spend mindlessly surfing Twitter and Facebook?  I do it way too much.

6. Be mindful.

What a silly contradiction. It’s so Zen.  Dude…just be. The very act of being mindful defeats the purpose of mindfulness. Either you get it or you don’t. You can’t try to be mindful.

7. Live like you’re dying.

What would you do if you had a week to live? I doubt you’d buy that new pair of sneakers or waste 3 hours watching NBC’s Thursday night lineup. Somehow I think we’re just stroking our egos when we talk about living like we’re dying.

8. Failure is a necessary part of success.

Most people forget to include the first part of this quote. LEARNING FROM failure is a necessary part of success. You can run into a brick wall a million times, but at the end of the day you will still be an idiot. Pay attention to what you’re doing wrong, and improve based on feedback.

9. You are what you eat.

If that’s the case most of us are walking sacks of saturated fat and refined sugar.

10. Be the change that you wish to see.

It would be nice if people actually subscribed to this belief. Then we’d probably have far fewer wars. People would butt out of our business, and stop being so insecure.

There’s nothing wrong with the phrases themselves, but they tend to offer temporary relief without any real substance. Nothing changes and we go back to our same old habits.  Our lives feel mediocre, and we wonder why it sucks to wake up in the morning. This post is tough love. It’s a kick in the pants. I’m writing it for myself just as much as I’m writing it for you.  I recommend favoriting it and sharing it with your friends.  It can be beneficial to take a critical look at your life.