The mantra for success

Photo by Razvan Chisu on Unsplash

There is none! Yes right of the bat let me tell you in no uncertain terms. There is no mantra for success.

You will see motivational quotes from leaders, successful entrepreneurs, inventors etc. that say stuff like

Change your life today. Don’t gamble on the future, act now, without delay

Success is not final; failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.

Opportunities don’t happen. You create them.”

Then they say stuff like

Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.

Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.

People will also say that getting a degree or certificate is meaningless if you are prepared to follow your dreams.

Lots of Blah blah.

You will read self help books like Rich Dad Poor Dad, Who moved my cheese etc.

You will inculcate all of this in your life.

Will all of you make it? Probably not. And here’s why

Success if contingent upon the right place right time theory -

What’s that then? Never heard of it? Well lets give you an example. You see a piece of paper lying on the ground. Its a lottery ticket. Somebody must have dropped it. Then you hold onto it and wait for the winner to be declared. The next day the winner is declared and you are it. You are a millionaire overnight. You have met with success just by being in the right place at the right time.

You are in an elevator talking to a friend about a business idea. A man next to you overhears the conversation and turns out to be an investor. He likes your idea and promises to invest in it. You get some seed money and build your idea into a billion dollar conglomerate.

There are several such examples. What is common?

  1. The providence of being in the right place at the right time. For what? That million dollar opportunity of course.
  2. Grabbing that opportunity with both hands and milking it for all its worth.

Success is contingent on the inheritance theory -

Born into money or born with a silver spoon. Life is full off possibilities. Even with an average IQ you should do just fine.

Success is contingent on the no one else was around theory -

Your boss earns 1 million dollars a month. You earn half as much. The boss dies. There is no one else to fill that position but you. You have to now take up the reigns. You get promoted to his position and his salary. Boom — overnight success because no one else was around.

Success is contingent upon the stumbling upon theory -

You stumble and look down to see a bag full of pirate treasure. You sell it — boom — instant billionaire.

A lot of times and I mean the majority of the time — success comes from sheer dumb luck. Or an opportunity that you grab and run with. It doesn’t comes from following your dreams. It doesn’t come from focusing on one goal and working very very hard towards it. If your stars aren’t aligned the right way no matter what you do — it ain’t gonna work out for you buddy. But stars aren’t the only thing

You also need to be

  1. Primed to suffer through failure after failure after failure
  2. Be ready to forgo a comfortable lifestyle and be prepared to even live in abject poverty — with no guarantees for success
  3. Have thick skin so that when you get knocked down you can always get back up, ready to take another punch

To summarize, you need to be invincible to everything life can throw at you. Will you still be successful? Maybe not. Millions of people undergo this kind of torture everyday but don’t make it. That’s life. Not everybody can be successful or rich.

What I am trying to say is that never get taken in by stuff that people say or do. Never look to replicate other people’s success. Everybody’s circumstances are different and unique. Some make it. Others break it.

Are you comfortable putting everything on the line to replicate a so called template for success? Fine. You do you. Will it work? Maybe. But do you want to bet everything on a maybe?

Final thoughts — You wanna really be successful? Work with what you have first. Get a basic education at least.

Have a talent? Hone it and see where it goes..

See an opportunity for making a quick buck legitimately? Take it. Always take it.

Try your hand at different things. Meet people and try to find out what ticks. Try your hand at that.

Build a backup fund in case it all goes south. Don’t drag your family and friends into your circumstances. Make provisions for such contingencies so that only you are affected by your failures.

Let the successful people make their quaint quotes. You are you and only you know what’s right for you. Do your own thing. And be smart about it.

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Ritesh Shergill

Ritesh Shergill

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