Initiative is to Success

“Initiative is to success what a lighted match is to a candle.”

—Orlando A. Battista, 20th-Century Canadian-American chemist & author

Image of a lit match

Image from Flickr by Rob Howard

Today’s quote suggests that initiative can be a spark of life, leading us to a brighter future.

What, for you, is the value and importance of getting the ball rolling on your key professional and personal priorities, rather than taking a laid-back, “wait and see” approach?

Many hesitate, thinking, “What if it doesn’t work?” or “What if I embarrass myself and look foolish in taking such a risk?”

If you have these thoughts, consider instead what it would be like if it worked out just as you hoped. What is the likelihood you would wish you had taken the initiative sooner?

EXERCISE:

Where are you currently hesitating or procrastinating on an important matter in your life? What act of initiative that supports a brighter future will you take within the next 24 hours?

There are no speed limits on the road to success

There are no speed limits on the road to success.”

—David W. Johnson, Social Psychologist

Image of a jet breaking the sound barrier

Image from Business Insider

What is the only known speed limit in the universe?

If you answered 186,000 miles per second (the speed of light) you would be correct!

In our cyberspace society, companies are beginning to use this concept as a strategic advantage in relationship to our planet’s geography, to achieve micro-second advantages over their competitors. Think of placing communication devices, such as cell towers, closer together so signals travel shorter distances, in less time.

Many people are not interested in living 24 hours a day in a speed-of-light world, or for that matter, breaking the sound barrier (340.29 miles per second). Their internal clocks and daily rhythms flow at a more modest pace.

The take-away for me here is that we all get to chose the optimal speed at which we travel our success journey, be we tortoise or hare.

EXERCISE:

In what areas in your life is it appropriate to speed up, slow down, or maybe even stop to achieve the level of life success you desire?

The Most Important Thing You Wear

“Your expression is the most important thing you wear.”

—Author Unknown

Image from Unsplash

Putting our best foot forward, making a good first impression, and the general way we present ourselves to the world couldn’t be more important these days.

We know that people are judging us all the time. What you are wearing, literally? And what physical expressions are people observing about you?

Examining your current attitudes, moods, emotions, and feelings may provide some clues to how open and receptive people may be to you. This almost always impacts the success of our personal and professional relationships.

I tend to be a very serious person. My wife Wendy frequently asks me if I’m OK. When I say, “Yes, I am,” she often coaches me by saying, “Inform your face!”

EXERCISE:

How and in what ways can you become more aware of the expressions you wear in public? How can you use your expressions to enhance the personal and professional success you desire? A genuine smile is a great place to start.

Getting Ready is the Secret to Success

“Before everything else, getting ready is the secret of success.”

-Henry Ford, Founder of the Ford Motor Company

Image of an announcer with a bullhorn

Image from Flickr by Jun

Get Ready! Get Set! Go! …. Announcers of so many races use this phrase!

Perhaps as a child you raced with friends on the playground. I recall numerous events in which a particular race was deemed “unfair” by a participant or two. Their exact words, when complaining about the unfairness were, “I wasn’t ready!”

EXERCISE:

What are some of the most important life races in your professional or personal worlds? What extra effort can and will you make to be fully ready when it is time to go?

If people are doubting how far you will go

“If people are doubting how far you’ll go, go so far that you can’t hear them anymore.”

-Michele Ruiz, award-winning broadcast journalist

Image of man walking on ice

Image from Unsplash

Having supportive people in your life is a critical component to success.

It is bad enough when our own thinking fuels the seeds of doubt; we surely don’t need those around us sharing their limiting beliefs and negative views of our potential.

The coaching for today is to see these individuals as toxic, and to remove them completely from our worlds.

EXERCISE:

Who are the doubters and naysayers in your personal and professional worlds? In what ways can you get far away from them, to avoid their negative influence? How can and will you surround yourself with “true believers” to support your greatest personal and professional potential?

Because I had a friend

“I’m a success today because I had a friend who believed in me and I didn’t have the heart to let him down.”

⏤Abraham Lincoln,16th President of the United States

Image of Lincoln Memorial

Image from Flickr by Jim Grey

Perhaps no other single factor beyond personal motivation contributes more to eventual success than social support. This includes friends, family, teachers, mentors, and other encouraging individuals. Lincoln, often considered one of our finest presidents, attributed his success⏤which included many bumps in the road⏤to a loyal and supportive friendship.

EXERCISE:

Who are the individuals that are always there to support and encourage you to be your very best? Consider thanking them today, and let them know the difference they make.

How can you pay it forward by being the friend who believes in the highest potential of others? Perhaps there is a future Lincoln in the bunch!

Friday Review Success

FRIDAY REVIEW: SUCCESS

How do you define Success?  Here are a few success-related posts you may have missed. Click on the links to read the full message:

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“Every wall is another fence that thins the herd.”

 

 

 

 

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“Your best teacher is your last mistake.”

 

 

 

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“Great leaders don’t blame the tools they’re given. They work to sharpen them.”

 

 

 

highest success levels

“The slogans ‘hang on’ and ‘press on’ have solved and will continue to solve the problems of humanity.”

—Ogwo David Emenike, Nigerian Author and Speaker

image of a man on a mountain top with a flag that reads "Keep Exploring"

Image from Unsplash by Justin Luebke

Are you familiar with the word grit? There has been a media frenzy over this buzzword, which some claim as the key to success.

Believers in this concept suggest that if one is to reach the highest levels of success, talent must be combined with hard work, determination, and perseverance.

Angela Duckworth, author of Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, emphasizes the importance of passion. She stresses that without passion, dogged determination, and tenacity, hard work simply becomes drudgery without direction.

EXERCISE:

In what way does your passion fuel personal or professional projects, giving you the energy and desire to “hang on” or “press on”?

when the universe celebrates success

“When the universe celebrates success, are you a joint partner or a spectator?”

—Laurent Carrel, Author

Photo of Marvin P.

Marvin P.

I recently had an inspiring conversation with Marvin P, a friend at my health club. Marvin is now 80 years young. He’s been a softball fanatic for as long as I’ve known him.

Each season, he mentions that he is slowing down a bit more as we discuss his running, fielding, and course, batting abilities. On this particular occasion, he shared that his travel team had just won the 2016 national championship in his age division!

EXERCISE:

In what areas of life is it time to get out of the stands and onto the field, to pursue and celebrate your personal and professional championships?

Plan your day work your plan

“Plan your day and work your plan.”

—Author Unknown

image of a daytimer planner

Image from daytimer.com

Many people find planning their day downright boring, preferring to simply go with the flow and see what the day brings.

The most successful and often most disciplined people, on the other hand, chart their course and prepare for their day before they venture out into the world.

Consider this statement from Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll: “If you don’t know where you are going, any road can take you there.”

What payoff do you get for planning—or not planning—your own course? Some would say that unhappy people get to play the victim and blame other for their lot in life.

What does it cost you and others to abdicate opportunities and responsibility for planning your own course?

EXERCISE:

Consider posting today’s quote in several locations in your personal and professional environments. Take 3-5 minutes each day over this week to discover its benefits in creating a happier and more successful life.