What it Takes to Become Great

bio Let’s face it. We all want something. And there’s nothing wrong with that.

But why is it that some people are this amazing bust out phenomenon and other people, are well, just plugging along?

I may not know everything, but what I have learned is this: becoming great is a marriage of many levels. It’s a marriage of mind meets efforts. It’s a marriage of desire meets inspiration. And it’s a marriage of determination meets dreams.

The Right Dream
Part of the reason people fail to become great is because they’re chasing the wrong dream. It’s not that their dream isn’t worthy. It is. But it maybe that the person is chasing something that really isn’t in his or her own personal best interest. It’s not what he or she was specifically made for. In other words, it’s not their life work calling. They want that dream because they want the money. But maybe the real reason they want the money is because they want other people to appreciate or look up to them. Or maybe they want security. They may want the dream because they’ve been told by the parents, or friends, or society that they should want it. They may be holing on to a misplaced dream because they are scared to try their real life’s work and fail.

Finding out what the REAL thing you want is the start to finding out what your life’s work is meant to be. Want to know the shortcut? Ask yourself what you’d be doing if you had all the money, time and resources at hand to do anything you wished. What did you dream of being when you were between nine and twelve years old? What would you get up every morning and do just for the sheer love of doing it?

That’s the direction of your true life’s work.

And don’t give me, but I don’t have the education/experience/contacts/financing/whatever. If you want it badly enough, you’ll find a way. “It’s not what you have but what you do with what you have that will determine your success or failure. Abraham Maslow, the great psychologist said that the story of the human race is the story of people selling themselves short. He said people have a tendency to settle for far less from life than they are truly capable of.” ~ Brian Tracy

The Right Model
Once you discover your true life’s work, find the people who are the best at it in the world. Look at what they do. Analyze how they do it. Copy them instead of reinventing the wheel. Because, your wheel will look different anyway once it’s complete, but you might as well take the short cut in understanding the physics and mechanics of it by looking at something that works.

The Right Ethic
Now you work. I mean seriously work.

“I will NOT be outworked. Period… You might have more talent than me, you might be smarter than me, you might be sexier than me, you might be all of those things. You got it on me in nine categories. But if we get on the treadmill together, there’s two things:  Either you’re getting off first, or I’m gonna die. It’s really that simple.”

~Will Smith, on his work ethic

“If you want to reach the stars in your career, you have to become excellent at what you do. You have to pay any price, go any distance, spend any amount of time necessary to “be the best.” Extraordinary rewards only go for extraordinary performance; average rewards for average performance; below average rewards, insecurity and failure for below average performance. And here’s a vital key, you are being paid today exactly what you’re worth – no more, no less. If you want to earn more, you must increase your worth, your value to others.” ~ Brian Tracy

The Right Attitude
Which, from the platitudes of Dr. Phil, we all now know that if you don’t first value yourself, then you can’t expect others to value you. You have to believe that you are worth investing the time, energy and money into yourself to chase that dream.

So what’s that all mean? It means that today, right now, you can choose to become great. Even the biggest star in Hollywood, the richest man on earth, the best surgeon in the world, the smartest scientist alive, the most-well-known writer in the world started at the beginning. They did it, which means it can be done. There are no limits, except those you impose on yourself.

Start simply: First, set high standards for yourself. Don’t just accept that what you are currently doing is your best. You can do more. You can be more. You can be great.

Second, select one key skill area that is important in your job or personal life and resolve to become the best in that area. Just one thing. Maybe your the person who’s most on time. Maybe you spell everything correctly. Maybe you’re the most creative person at your job. Whatever it is, determine that you are going to focus and become the best at that one thing. Then, when you are pick another thing. I guarantee you’ll be better off than you are now.

What it takes to become great are two simple ingredients: You and your determination to succeed.

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