Three Things to Know if Success is Your Goal
For most of us, success requires time, effort and focus. If you’re trying to step it up a notch while the rest of South Africa winds down for the year, consider these key points.
Some people make millions overnight. That probably won’t happen to you or me. The normal path to success is one of work and discipline in the pursuit of a specific goal. We need to get our act together and focus in order to create a notable achievement. That’s just how it is. If you’re struggling to focus, there’s a good chance you need to come to terms with three simple things.
IT WILL TAKE TIME
Do you want to be a property tycoon? A doctor? An astronaut? Short of a few excluding criteria, most people have what it takes to be any of these. The limiting factor isn’t money or any of those other stories we tell ourselves. The limiting factor is misuse of time. Perhaps it will take you 20 years to complete your law degree, or a decade of financial sacrifice to afford the cost of going into space. It may discourage you when other people with better funding do it faster. The question is: how badly do you want it? You can have almost anything you want if you accept that it won’t happen overnight. Get started anyway.
YOU”LL RESIST GETTING STARTED
There’s never going to be a moment when you feel perfectly at peace with pushing yourself into a long-term commitment to work hard for a goal. There won’t be an obvious time when you’ll feel ready to make a sacrifice in your life. Recognise this, and take comfort in the fact that it’s the same for most people. A key difference between those who make great things happen and those who don’t is often nothing more than their willingness to push themselves, especially when they don’t feel like it.
TEST YOUR ASSUMPTIONS – DAILY
Ah, but there’s no point in chasing a pipe dream, is there? We’re far better off, or so we tell ourselves, aiming for realistic goals than reaching for some crazy dream. Well, I once worked with a guy who was writing a book on the late silver-screen legend Steve McQueen, in his spare time. He simply picked up the phone, sent emails and got on with the task of contacting every actor, director and producer who had ever worked with McQueen. About 80% of those he contacted agreed to talk, many of them Hollywood legends. He even managed to get the legendary actor Robert Vaughn to write the book’s foreword.
It took this guy nearly 20 years of work, which he did without any guarantee that he would be successful. But he proved that crazy dreams can be more realistic than we ever imagine – as long as you accept these three truths.
Colin Browne, the author of How to Build a Happy Sandpit, helps businesses understand how their organisational culture impacts their employee engagement and performance. Read more about his thoughts on his blog, Colinism.
Colin Browne: colinjbrowne.com
Words: Colin Browne