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Going to the Movies for Motivation: Miracle

In 1980, the US Olympic Hockey Team won an upset victory over the Soviets and then went on to win gold. The “Miracle on Ice” gave America a much-needed burst of national pride in the depths of the Cold War.

The movie, Miracle, shows how Coach Herb Brooks took a talented but unfocused group of collegiate hockey players and motivated them to unite and give it their all. One scene stands out—Coach Brooks’ pep talk to the team right before they go out on the ice to meet the Soviets.

“Great Moments are born from great opportunity,” he explains, telling them that they have such an opportunity now. In a few short words, he announces that he’s tired of hearing about how much better the other team is, that tonight the American team is the best in the world, that they were born to play hockey and need to go out there and do it.

And they did it.

Motivation isn’t everything. You need talent and skill—but if you’re not motivated to give it your all, your skill isn’t going to matter very much. The American players had the skill, individually. That’s why they were chosen for the team. They had earned their moment. They just needed to act like it.

Maybe you are among the best in the world at what you do. Maybe you’re not. But you have to have some real skill and talent or you wouldn’t be where you are now. You earned the opportunity. Now you have to seize the moment. If you believe you are the best in the world, then today maybe you can be.

Don’t just do it for yourself. Do it for your company, your employees, your partners, your family. In the movie, the players didn’t just do it for themselves and their coach, they did it for their country—they had a larger sense of purpose. They had pride in what they were doing.

“Now go out there and take it.”