Success is not an accident

5875Do not wait. The time will never be just right. Start where you stand: work with whatever tools you have at your command, and the better tools will be found as you go along,” Napoleon Hill (as quoted by Brian Tracy in Flight Plan: How to Achieve More, Faster than You Ever Dreamed Possible).

The amazing irony about life is that in order to move to the next level, we have to stretch ourselves, we must go into areas that are uncomfortable for us, we must do something we’ve not done before. Pilots call this pushing the outside of the envelope. 

But, in order to achieve the next level the benefits are two-fold, or maybe even three or four-fold. There is the benefit of achieving that which we sought, and the benefit of developing new skills and techniques that we needed to develop in order to achieve the thing. We not only get the thing, we become more.

We’ve been looking at Brian Tracy’s book all week, and as we finish it I can’t help but think about the moon landing. Not only did we achieve the goal of landing on the moon (and getting home safely), there were huge achievements in technology, medicine, electronics, engineering, and many other areas that benefitted from the endeavor. It works that way in our personal lives as well.

Tracy says that to achieve something that you have never achieved before, you must become someone that you have never been before. You must develop qualities and characteristics that you never had before. You must learn talents and skills you have never learned before. However, to become truly successful in whatever way you define that, you must first become a successful person in your own heart and mind (Tracy 146).

Imagine if we had waited until the “time was just right,” before we went to the moon. We would still be waiting. When President Kennedy made that decision, the technologies and skills we needed to accomplish the mission did not even exist. Tracy leaves us with the three key actions to move us towards whatever success we seek:

  • Decide exactly what you want – write it down and make a plan to achieve it (your destination) (Tracy 147)
  • Take action, once your flight plan is in place, push the throttles to full power and take off (Tracy 148)
  • Make continual course corrections, every hour and every day; the more often you check your true course the less time the journey will take – expect setbacks and course reversals, even emergency landings at times – you cannot avoid every crisis so your goal is to respond to them as they come up (Tracy 148)

 The time is now. “The future belongs to the risk takers, not the security seekers,” Brian Tracy (132).

Tracy, Brian. Flight Plan: How to Achieve More, Faster than You Ever Dreamed Possible. San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler, 2009.

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