Motivation Articles

Increase Your Abe-ility

Former President Spent Life Persevering

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Before he reached the age of 30, Lincoln suffered a nervous breakdown. He broke off his engagement to future wife Mary Todd, took to his bed and sank into a deep, debilitating depression. But caring about others is what eventually brought him out. By helping a friend through a similarly tough time of personal issues and marriage doubts, he found the strength to rally. He stayed in the game by shifting his focus from his own troubles to someone else’s. This lesson gave him the power to stay true to the bigger cause of saving a country from its darkest moment, even when his personal life was in shambles. Can you help someone else reach his or her goals?

Be Grateful
The country is splitting apart. Death threats are numbering in the dozens. His wife is suffering from mental illness. What does President Lincoln do? He creates Thanksgiving Day. He creates a way for the entire country to give thanks for their good fortune. He knew that despite all that looked bleak, staying focused on positive ideals would be the only way to survive these troubles. He was always thankful for life and its opportunities. When you get discouraged, what should you be focusing on instead?

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About The Author

Mike Kramer Mike Kramer
As a writer and artist, Mike has witnessed countless motivational stories and techniques. See all of Mike's articles.

Member Comments

  • Exactly what I needed to hear today. My confidence has been flagging lately, and the questions at the end of each point are really good ones to ask myself.

    Thanks for this! - 12/11/2014 11:42:06 AM
  • MFC2013
    This was a really inspiring article. It was just what I needed today! Thanks so much! - 10/25/2013 11:03:32 AM
  • Lincoln is my favorite historical person and really an inspiration. Great article! - 6/29/2013 4:16:05 PM
  • Reading about someone else's setbacks that they walked away from is inspiring. Great to see people achieve their goals no matter what. - 6/29/2013 9:23:07 AM
  • Just what I needed to read today. - 7/20/2012 9:37:17 PM
  • truly someone to aspire to - 1/7/2012 8:00:52 PM
  • What a story to remember. :) He was truly a good man who never gave up!
    - 6/20/2011 11:26:01 AM
  • I enjoyed this article. Abraham Lincoln is a great role model for us all. - 1/24/2011 2:59:44 PM
  • Always love your articles, Mike. This one was no exception! What a great man Abraham Lincoln was. Inspiring!
    Jan - 12/25/2010 10:48:14 AM
  • Thank you for the article. Lincoln's story has a lot of inspiration for all of us. - 12/25/2010 8:30:08 AM
    Excellent article..I believe that for those that have truly studied Lincoln, you would know that religion was a cornerstone of his character, however, having not studies him myself, I enjoyed just reading about the struggles that he dealt with that we all struggle with regardless of our religious affiliations or lack thereof. This is certainly an article that speaks to you about pushing past your difficulties, weight related or otherwise! Thanks for this, I will print it for future reading - 10/27/2010 2:25:58 PM
  • You nailed it, ETHNOSTUDENT--Lin
    coln would be appalled. To talk about Lincoln and leave out his faith is like talking about a whole different person than who Lincoln was. He never seemed to have any difficulty giving his thanks to God, including the establishment of Thanksgiving as a national holiday just for that purpose. How has this nation sunk so low? - 10/7/2010 9:04:02 AM
  • J-HALL
    I highly recommend reading "Lincoln's Melancholy: How depression challenged a president and fueled his greatness" by Joshua Wolf Shenk. Based on detailed research, Shenk shows how Lincoln suffered from chronic depression, and ultimately chose to consciously shift his goal away from personal contentment (which he realized he could not attain) and toward universal justice. Compelling and readable, it showed me that Lincoln was even more extraordinary than I knew. - 8/23/2010 5:11:08 PM
  • You leave out what I think was a major reason why Lincoln was able to persevere - he had a strong faith in God. - 8/13/2010 10:18:56 AM
  • This article reminds us once again that no matter how bad things seem in our lives, someone has always had worse. It is good to also be reminded that we should never give up and let setbacks convince us to give up our dreams. - 7/28/2010 7:39:36 PM

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