I recently became aware of this poem written by Dale Wimbrow in 1934. Part of what drives me is living up to the potential I believe I have; in other words when I look in the mirror I want to know I was honest with myself and gave everything my best:
When you get what you want in your struggle for self,
And the world makes you King for a day,
Just go to the mirror and look at yourself,
And see what that man has to say.
For it isn't your Father, or Mother, or Wife,
Whose judgement upon you must pass.
The fellow whose verdict counts most in your life
Is the one staring back from the glass.
He's the fellow to please - never mind all the rest
For he's with you clear to the end,
And you've passed your most difficult, dangerous test
If the man in the glass is your friend.
You may be like Jack Horner and "chisel" a plum,
And think you're a wonderful guy,
But the man in the glass says you're only a bum
If you can't look him straight in the eye.
You can fool the whole world down the pathway of years,
And get pats on the back as you pass,
But your final reward will be heartaches and tears
If you've cheated the man in the glass.