Why you and I do what we do does matter, doesn’t it? People do things basically for two reasons:
- Selfish reasons. They do something because it will benefit them. They don’t care what the outcome is as long as they win. They are not concerned with the potential side effects and who might be hurt. A selfish person says, “What’s in it for me?” They think win – lose. Their conscience is seared.
- Self-less reasons. They do something because it will benefit others. They care about how it affects everyone. While they want to win, their motive is not at any cost. They consider the ethics, morals, and common sense of the situation and if it goes against one of those, they won’t do it. A self-less person says, “What can I do to serve you?” They think win – win. Their conscience is clear.
You may be thinking, “I am definitely not in the first category.” Well, I hope that you don’t dwell there and I hope it is not part of your character, but I think we all have a natural tendency to fall into the selfish trap if we are not careful. Be honest, who does not like to have things go their own way? We all like people to do what we want, when we want it.
So what motivates people? Some people would say the carrot, and some would say the stick. Some would say money, and some would say they motivate themselves. All of those are true, but they are all rooted in two things. We are either motivated by fear, or we are motivated by love.
If you are motivated by fear, your selfish ambitions take over. You lose sight of your own humanity when fear takes over. Love, on the other hand, is liberating. Love is like turning on the light in a dark room. Love gives. Love heals. Love creates, builds, and strengthens. Fear takes. Fear makes us sick. Fear tears down, destroys, and weakens us.
Next time you find yourself feeling or acting selfish about something, ask yourself, “What am I afraid of?” One thing I know for sure about fear. If you don’t confront it, it won’t go away. Fear will continue to advance and take over your life and crush it if you let it. It can destroy you, your family, your business, and your relationships. In the words of the now famous song….Let It Go.
I know that getting rid of fear can be hard and even seem impossible, but the cure to fear is actually pretty simple, embrace love. There is a proverb that says, “Perfect love casts out fear.” Embrace love, and fear will flee. Fear dwells in darkness. Love dwells in light. It is up to you where you will live. I am encouraging you to step into the light. It sure beats the alternative.