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By 6:25 PM , ,

A balloonist I look to for inspiration is none other than the billionaire, entrepreneur, political activist, humanitarian, adventurer and media mogul, Sir Richard Branson. On this Thanksgiving, I'd like to repost Branson's 20 Inspirational Insights from his company site.

20. 'A business has to be involving, it has to be fun, and it has to exercise your creative instincts.'

19. 'I've had great fun turning quite a lot of different industries on their head and making sure those industries will never be the same again, because Virgin went in and took them on.'

18. 'Although my spelling is still sometimes poor, I have managed to overcome the worst of my difficulties through training myself to concentrate.'

17. 'If I was a businessman, or saw myself as a businessman, I would have never gone into the airline business.'

richard branson, virgin.com
16. 'My mother was determined to make us independent. When I was four years old, she stopped the car a few miles from our house and made me find my own way home across the fields. I got hopelessly lost.'

15. 'I am prepared to try anything once.'

14. 'The balloons only have one life and the only way of finding out whether they work is to attempt to fly around the world.'

13. 'We believe that within five years, 96 per cent of British consumers will have access to the internet, whether it be through a personal computer, a set-top box or a mobile phone.'

12. 'You never know with these things when you're trying something new what can happen. This is all experimental.'

11. 'Having a personality of caring about people is important. You can’t be a good leader unless you generally like people. That is how you bring out the best in them.'

10. 'We'd love to be involved with the creation of something very special, something quite large and something quite exciting.'

9. 'Records are made to be broken. It is in man's nature to continue to strive to do just that.'

8. 'Ridiculous yachts and private planes and big limousines won’t make people enjoy life more, and it sends out terrible messages to the people who work for them. It would be so much better if that money was spent in Africa – and it’s about getting a balance.'

7. 'Above all, you want to create something you're proud of. This has always been my philosophy of business. I can honestly say that I have never gone into any business purely to make money. If that is the sole motive, then I believe you are better off not doing it.'

6. 'I don't think of work as work and play as play. It's all living.'

5. 'As much as you need a strong personality to build a business from scratch, you also must understand the art of delegation. I have to be good at helping people run the individual businesses, and I have to be willing to step back. The company must be set up so it can continue without me.'

4. 'Business opportunities are like buses, there's always another one coming.'

3. 'I never get the accountants in before I start up a business. It's done on gut feeling, especially if I can see that they are taking the mickey out of the consumer.'

2. 'My interest in life comes from setting myself huge, apparently unachievable challenges and trying to rise above them.'

1. 'Right now I'm just delighted to be alive and to have had a nice long bath.'

Of all of them, the ones that ring most true to me right now are #6, #11 and #14 (for obvious reasons).

I thank him for showing me (and the world) that when you dream something up, that's your first clue, and sometimes last, to have a go at something meaningful. Those who remain focused may achieve success; but success is really only a by-product of the main event of having a vision and a will. Even after some of his colossal falls, he has exhibited equal resiliency by picking himself up and dusting himself off to take on the next opportunity, or hare-brained idea to the rest of the world, and repeat.

I look to Sir Branson, not for all of the audacious things that he has attempted and accomplished publicly, but rather, for the personal reminder that I must have a mission for as long as I'm alive, and furthermore, they must be enjoyable to me. The possibility of failure should never be a deterrent, but only fuel for all of your maiden voyages or virgin flights.

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  1. As you know, I'm basically "Hard-Copy" person.
    So, I visited "Virgin" and cppied/printed his "Insights."

    I think this is the excellent material to share with JA Circle readers.

    Thanks, Kana.