One day, I met this fellow at the running track. Just by watching the intensity and passion in his face and his jogging, I could tell that he was driven by a deeper force – something was really motivating and fuelling him.
As he began to walk, I caught up to him. I introduced myself. I then said, “That’s a lot of laps you did! How do you stay motivated?”

He paused … His face revealed a look of emotional depth …

“Dan…” he said, “I always considered myself an achiever in life.”

“But … I’ve been trying to get a job now for … oh, way too long a time … I’ve been unsuccessful. It’s been so frustrating – all the time and energy I put in to all the searching, all the resumes I sent, all the job interviews, the traveling, the expenses and all the rejections.”

“I felt things were so out of my control. And I felt it was unfair.”

“Then I realized something … Jogging, walking, or whatever kind of fitness … is in my control. No hiring manager can control this. I can choose to be in the best shape of my life if I want.”

“I used the things out of my control as motivation to choose to do great things with the things IN my control. And physically, I’m in the best shape of my life.”

“For every job interview, I log in five hours of exercise, spread out over days of course! And for every hour of job searching and sending resumes, I try to log in an hour."

“And sometimes, I think of certain circumstances that fuel me even more! Like the time I went to an interview an hour away in the freezing cold and snow! Or when I felt the person interviewing me was not as qualified as me!”

“Dan … I’m in the best shape of my life. I feel good. And I feel more confident now on interviews, too.”

My mouth stood agape as I realized the beauty of this wisdom.

Talk about balancing out the scoreboard. He chose to let every rejection benefit him. And frustration is such a strong propellant.

He optimized what was in his control as a result of the frustration caused by what was out of his control.

Wow, time to start brainstorming!

Author's Bio: 

Dan Britt is a NJ drummer/instructor who conducts clinics at schools and conferences. A background in psychological research, his inspirational articles have appeared in various international publications and organization newsletters. Dan can be contacted through his website,, or via e-mail at