You are instructed to travel to New York City from your present location. What different modes of transportation can you use to get there? You could fly by airplane, drive a car, or ride a train or bus. You may use a combination of those forms of transportation. The amount of time and directions will likely be different for each form of transportation, yet, the bottom line is you can get to NYC.
This same principle applies to our lives. We all share the same destination: a desire to have success at something. It may be related to family, finances, relationships, etc. Even though we share the same destination (success), the path to reach that destination may be filled with delays, detours, and construction when compared to others who are traveling to the same destination. The great thing is, despite those obstacles, we can all reach the same destination. You have what you need to get there!
Training with the Power Scholars program I’m working with on the importance of having a growth mindset. We are not finished products! Click here for the video.
Today, I come wanting to share some good news with you:
YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT IN ORDER TO BE GREAT OR REACH YOUR GOAL! I think that is important to share because there are many times we quit or don’t even try because we feel we’re not perfect or have the perfect circumstances. Listen, we all make mistakes. Most of us have experienced deep disappointments, failures, or challenges. Luckily, we have opportunities to succeed in today’s world despite this. Sports is a great analogy for understanding that we do not need to be perfect in order to win or be great. Muhammad Ali, who recently past away, is considered by many as the greatest boxer of all time; yet, he wasn’t undefeated. He wasn’t considered a power puncher. Despite this, he is still viewed as the best ever. The NBA will crown a new champion in the next few days; whatever team wins the championship will have experienced losing during the glory of a championship season. Thank God perfection is not needed on the road to success; you only need to stay on the road!
The path to greatness seems to be a steep and, sometimes, lonely climb. Lately, I have been observing people who are successful in their fields; they have some traits in common. They seem to have 3 simple keys to greatness:
- Know your purpose or what you want. Contrary to what’s popular in society, discovering your true purpose can take years of soul searching. That’s ok. Trial and error will likely bring you to your purpose. What you want can change, but you need to have an idea of where you’re headed
- Tune out distractions. I hate to break the news to you, but there will be things that will happen along the way which will take you off your game. Some will be major, some will be minor. You may have to modify your plans. You also have tune out yourself. Sometimes we have negative thoughts or self-talk based on our experiences. We have to learn to counter these thoughts with positive affirmations.
- Continue to improve. Always look to sharpen or develop new skills. Read up on your goal or craft.
The keys to greatness are simple to remember, but take a lot of time and effort. Remember, success is a process, not an event!
The challenge of timing. If you are waiting for the perfect time to start your goal, it probably will never happen. Don’t get me wrong, timing is important; but finding the perfect time is rare. There is always going to be a challenge whenever you start; it is likely the reason you have the goal in the first place! The key is to get started and make progress. Starting off with a bang is not as important as making consistent progress. As you make progress, you can always add to what you are doing to reach your goal. Stay encouraged and don’t give up! You may need to put your goal or dream on pause, but you don’t have to abandon it. One thing I know for sure: if you quit, you definitely won’t reach your goal. You’re on the clock!
I recently had an opportunity to speak to the Y Achievers at the Walzem YMCA in San Antonio, TX. I spoke on how academics and athletics can complement each other & can help you be the best you can be. We discuss the realities of athletics compared to the value of academics. The kids were awesome! Click here to view.
We are all aware of the ease of making a goal compared to the challenge of actually sticking with it. Our goals should focus more on our process or progress toward a goal as opposed to the goal itself. Notice that I say progress. Progress indicates positive, consistent actions toward an expectation or goal. We have a much greater likelihood of sticking with our goals if we are focused more on the consistent actions to reach a goal. Consistency in our actions leads to growing confidence, which strengthens our resolve in progressing toward our goals. To be successful, we must consistently make progress. Success doesn’t happen overnight; it takes time. Achieving success is a process and not an event!