6 Motivating Motion Pictures
Like other forms of storytelling, movies have the power to educate as well as entertain. Dr. Skip Dine Young, Psychology Professor at Hanover College, Indiana, and author of "Psychology at the Movies," says films don't just reflect the viewer's current state, they can also provide clues for how to progress into the future. A steady diet of inspiring movies like these will not only help ignite the fire of success but also keep it burning bright as you reach for your goals.
In Yes Man (2008), Jim Carrey plays Carl Allen, a regular guy who's settled into his unfulfilling routine. With a simple change of behavior, his life is taken in directions he never thought possible. This movie is a great reminder to stay open to all the opportunities that surround us every day.
Notable quote: "The world's a playground. You know that when you are a kid, but somewhere along the way everyone forgets it."
The Pursuit of Happyness (2006) is the true-life tale of Chris Gardner, who ended up homeless while caring for his young child and working through an unpaid stockbroker internship. Aside from being an emotionally moving portrayal of the ups-and-downs of life, this film demonstrates why you should never give up on your dreams, or yourself.
Notable quote: "You got a dream? You gotta protect it. People can't do something themselves, they wanna tell you, you can't do it. If you want something, go get it. Period."
Stand and Deliver (1988) follows math teacher Jaime Escalante as he fights school administration apathy and gang violence in order to help under-privileged students at an inner-city school in Los Angeles. As much about succeeding in the face of adversity as overcoming low expectations of others, this film will inspire you to overcome any obstacles standing in your way.
Notable quote: "You're going to work harder here than you've ever worked anywhere else. And the only thing I ask from you is ... desire."
The Social Network (2010) tells a turbulent story of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. The film contains some cautionary lessons about the drawbacks of fast success, and the importance of friendships, having clear communication and watching your "legal" back. More importantly, it reminds one of the determination and focus required to succeed in the face of setbacks.
Notable quote: "You don't even know what the thing is yet. How big it can get, how far it can go. This is no time to take your chips down."
When Steve "Pre" Prefontaine (1997) tried out for basketball and football in high school, he failed to make both teams because of his height and an issue with his leg. He caught a glimpse of students running cross country and found the inspiration he'd pursue all the way to the 1972 Olympics in Munich. You too will be inspired by the total dedication of one of the not-as-well-known heroes of the running world.
Notable quote: "To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift."
Good Will Hunting (1997), a masterpiece written by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, is worth watching again and again. The film follows a 20-year-old genius who is working as a janitor at MIT and struggling to find his own way. His greatest obstacle to success is himself. For those who believe they are not worthy of success, this film will prove the opposite is true.
Notable quote: "You'll have bad times, but it'll always wake you up to the good stuff you weren't paying attention to."
Sources: Psychology Today, LifeHack.com