5 Inspirational Movies When Building a Business (Part 1)

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5 Inspirational Movies When Building a Business (Part 1)

So if you are just setting out on the road to building a business or you are in the early stages of building one, you inevitably go through a range of a roller coaster of emotions.

Some days are good and productive, some days you're mentally worn out or just can't seem to get started and you are looking around, for inspiration, motivation - well on days like these, you need to just shut the engines down, relax and put on a good movie to give you that boost.

Below are 5 (out of many, many choices) and in no particular order of movies that I personally recommend to help give you that inspiration:



Most people have seen Rocky at least once, twice, three and some of us many more times.

Rocky is the story of Rocky Balboa, a guy who lives from day to day, who works a dead end job but has a skill, a hobby and only a maybe a love/passion for boxing.

So I think as a starting point, many people can relate to this story in some respect, whether one works a dead job and wants more, or works a job and maybe working a business on the side, trying to grow it (or whatever version you use to relate to your circumstances).

Rocky is a guy, who is a good guy, has a heart of gold and as an audience, we just want to see him do well in life.


Out of the blue, he gets offered a shot, a dream shot at something he never thought imaginable, even in his dreams and that is a shot at the world title - and what does he do...he turns it down.

 Again, bringing this to real life, I believe every one of us, gets given a 'god-given' dream shot at something, its down to us to see it, to recognise it, to act on it - then after that one 'god-given' shot, there are the ones that we find mainly through hard work and sometimes even a bit of luck (mainly through hard work).

Now with Rocky, he was offered the chance to fight for that title but his lack of confidence, his lack of self belief, meant he initially turns it down.

However, after a period of self-reflection, some words from his mentor/coach Mickey in the end (it doesn't really matter too much how he got there, the main thing is, he does) he accepts it, he accepts that challenge and the rest as they say "is history"

So this film for me is not just about an underdog, taking on a huge challenge against the best in the world.

Its about a challenge within oneself, to find that belief, to find that confidence to know one is good enough to take anything on, if one just believes they can do it.

Pursuit of Happyness

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 The Pursuit of Happyness is a film thats based on the true story/true events of Chris Gardiner's life.

This is similar in some respects to Rocky but for me different and relateable on many different levels.

The movie is about a guy, who put the life savings of his and wife's into a business venture.

In the movie, Will Smiths character Chris works hard but life and bad luck just keep hitting him harder and harder to the point where that venture, just fails.

Again, many can relate to this - in life, sometimes things just dont work, no matter how hard you work at it, bad luck and life just hit you too hard, too often.

Now as a slight caveat to this, hard work, creativity, resourefulness etc are traits that are often found in success and these add to you having a higher chance of being successful but as can happen in life, sometimes that's just not the path for you.

The film then goes on to show the power of endurance, the power of not giving up on life and that when in the midst of everything breaking down around you opportunities can still present themselves.

In the movie Chris sees a guy pull up in a Ferrari and says to the guy driving it,

"I have 2 questions for you"

"What do you do and How do you do it?"

The answers here plant a seed in the mind of Chris of something else, that he never thought possible, that he may be able to do.

As the film progresses, he continues to endure life as more and more turmoils to the point where he his homeless and has his young son to look after.

He then gets a 'break' where he starts a new role, where the odds are slim at success but he uses his life skills that he has gained so far added with the fact of sheer determination and resourefulness of he cant give up, he has to be the best man in his group and does whatever it takes to be that.

Then for me its all about the final meeting of the film, the parts leading upto it, during the meeting and after it, no matter what, still gives me a lump in the throat.


Wolf of Wall Street

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The Wolf of Wall Street is based on the book of the same name by the author Jordan Belfort.

Now this film goes into alot of dark places where, money, greed and where bad decision making based on bad morals can take you - this isnt what I am advocating as this isn't inspirational.

As a further side note, Jordan was sentenced and served prison time for his illegal dealings in the film - so again these aren't the things that I find inspirational.

However, there are attributes and moments of genius in the film that one can take into their own life and use accordingly.

Early on in the film when Leonardo Dicaprio's character of Jordan Belfort is out at lunch with Matthew McConaughey's character and he gives him an 'interesting lesson' where he hums and beats his chest - one to watch and try.

Anyhow the film is how a guy loses his job when his firm 'goes under' and he his left to try and use his skill in a market where him and none of his peers are now able to get jobs due to the company reputation.

We see and learn how a guy goes into second, third, fourth rate version of his Wall Street company, starts at the bottom and uses the skills he has learned in trenches, so to speak.

Ordinarily in life, you learn your skills in the trenches, you fight and learn your way up into a higher position/to a bigger and better company and develop from there.

However, this was other way round - but then we see, with hard work and tenacity, how someone then sets up a business of their own and grows it into an empire.

Whats inspiring about this film is the story of losing a job, of starting from the bottom in another job, to then building something huge.

There are pitfalls, mistakes and bad decisions along the way but there was also some good times and there are people every single day in the world, using their skills, talents, tenacity, desire and hard work to build and grow their businesses.


It's a Wonderful Life

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You know the one, its on every Christmas with everlasting saying "everytime a bell rings, an angel gets its wings"

Its one, where you have seen many times before and when it comes on, you find yourself watching it and tears strolling down your cheeks after already telling yourself, "not this year".

Anyow, the reason for this film is more of a warmth, almost a spirtual view on things, as opposed to some of the others.

The movie is about George Bailey and who has plans for one life and after overcoming a number of hurdles and not giving up on it, doesn't end up going down the path he had hoped for and planned for.

Just variations of that paragraph alone, many entrepreneurs can relate to.

The film is a story that has hope interwoven through it even as it delves into one's dark mind, where it contemplates suicide.

The movie builds a story of George and everyone he interacts and how he interacts them aswell as how he deals with own life.

Then at his darkest point, the movie takes to the same world but where George doesn't exist and here George learns an important lesson about life, how one can affect other peoples lives, what you currently now have for the better and how you can always build on it for something better.

As i said, this is a slightly alternative choice as its about using the film to reflect on your own life, your own life in building a business and hopefully being re-invigorated by hope once again.

 Iron Man (Tony Stark)

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Well this is as much about the interpretation by Robert Downey Junior of the character of Tony Stark as much as anything else - aswell as a little personal indulgence.

I mean could of easily picked Bruce Wayne and whichever version you prefer (an article/can of worms for another day) for me.

However, I have picked Tony Stark from the Iron Man films as this is a character who has made it to the top of his chosen industry and once there, just does everything in style.

It's pure escapism at its finest, as when you're building a business on a day to day basis, alot of the time, its hard work, its laborious, its tedious, sometimes you just dont know if you're ever gonna move a step forward let alone anything else.

For me, watching Tony Stark, is when one can switch off at the end of the day's labours and just get lost in that world of cockiness, over confidence, indulgence, style, coolness to name but a few things.

Its a character who personifies all these things but also resourefulness, character, hope, intelligence and all packages, with a perfect one-liner.

It's a character where you take traits from and is a target, well beyond moon and stars to aim for, yet if you get any kind of productive distance from the everyday path that everyone else treads, that you haven't done to bad.



So there we have it 5 films and a few reasons I believe they are ideal to watch and have in your viewing library when building your business.

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