The Joy of Doing | Rebuilding Real Manhood & Womanhood

January 18, 2018

Listen to episode 232 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Joy of Doing | Rebuilding Real Manhood & Womanhood. Edited and adapted from A Book of Friendly Thoughts by Nixon Waterman.

Motivational Podcast Transcript: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. Coming up this weekend on Our Sunday Talks, we’ll be discussing the problem of life, along with the imaginary conflict that supposedly exists between science and religion. To gain access to our weekly Sunday series, please become our monthly patron today. To learn more, please visit

Today’s reading was edited and adapted from A Book of Friendly Thoughts by Nixon Waterman, published in 1913.

Half-way, half-hearted doings never amount to much. Battles are not won with flags at half-mast — they are run up to the very tops of their standards and are waved as far toward the heavens as is possible. If we lack enthusiasm, we are almost as certain to fail of achieving an end, as a locomotive engine that lacks steam is of climbing a grade.

A listless, lackadaisical spirit may get on all right, so long as the path of life is all on a level or down grade, but when it comes to hill-climbing and the real experiences of life that serve to develop character, we are likely to give up the contest, and surrender the prize we might win to other and more earnest competitors.

Aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something. If you would get the best results, do your work with enthusiasm as well as fidelity. The world makes way only for the determined person who laughs at barriers which limit others — at stumbling-blocks over which others fall.

Everyone knows that the friends whom they love best are the ones who are alive to the world about them and who feel an enthusiasm in the tasks and privileges that confront them. Enthusiasm is the breeze that fills the sails, and sends the ship gliding over the happy waves. It is the joy of doing things, and of seeing that things are well done. It gives to work a thoroughness and a delicious zest and to play a whole-souled, health-giving delight.

Only they who find joy in their work can live the larger and nobler life — for without work, and work done joyously, life must remain dwarfed and undeveloped.

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