What's the Real Secret of Successful People?
By Catherine Palin-Brinkworth
Have you ever wondered how some people become successful? You know the
ones I mean. Lacking all the expected attributes of a winner, often with
far more obstacles to overcome than you and I, they become rich and
famous, or at least, impressive. And you sit there and wonder what's wrong
with you? Why aren't you up there too? How come this individual seems to
have it made? You seem to have more talent, more intelligence, more
potential, and it's just not happening.
Persistence is not enough
Motivational speakers often quote Calvin Coolidge: Nothing can take the
place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than
unsuccessful men with talent...etc. etc. Calvin, I'm sorry. I'm afraid I
have serious doubts about this. In my experience, persistence can often
create nothing but a sore head when you're banging it up against the wrong
wall-or just banging it against any wall, come to think of it.
The real barrier
If you have the same level of energy, skill, discipline and will as the
other guy -and you're not as successful-it isn't persistence that is
holding you back. It's really your Glass Cage™.
People often use the term 'glass ceiling' to describe the limits or
barriers that are imposed by others-if someone else is doing this to you,
and they stop, you will be free. Mmm ... true, in some cases. In other
cases, the barrier is not just a ceiling. It's a cage. It has four walls
and a floor, as well. It surrounds us and encloses us totally, for our
entire lives. And it's not put there by anyone else. It's custom designed
and developed by us.
What to do about it
If you don't have the same level of energy, skill, discipline and will as
the successful people, you can do something about it. Those bits are easy.
Energy comes from a body in motion, not a body at rest. So, to create
energy, just do something. Anything really-it doesn't have to be brilliant
or perfect. It just has to be activity that is directed towards the
outcome you are seeking. For instance, if you want more business in the
door, pick up the phone and ring someone. (If you want to know what to say
when they answer, call me).
Delight in achievements
Energy is most effective when it's focussed, of course, and it feels best
when it's positive.
Someone reminded me recently to simply delight in the achievement of
every moment; that certainly felt good and seemed to create a whole lot
more energy almost instantly. Try it, and let me know what happens for
Skill can easily be developed by acquiring new, how-to information, and
then doing some practice. So, there's an idea …do some experiential
learning and enhance your current abilities. Remembering that know-how is
no good unless it becomes do-how. Information doesn't actually become
knowledge until we use it and discover the effects.
Discipline develops dreams
Discipline, is a word that I'm a little uncomfortable with, I must
confess! But I do know that when I apply it, miracles can happen.
For me it means making small commitments and requiring myself to keep
them. Keeping commitments to others is not an issue-it's essential.
Keeping them to myself however, is the tough call. Will-the inner drive-is
very often the missing link.
My mentor, John Nevin, used to say: "You gottawanna". If the
will isn't there, all of the skill in the world is useless. Check in on
your will to succeed. Do you really wanna?
I have a theory that we always do actually get what we want; our real
goals are shining back at us from our outcomes.
For instance - I want to be pencil slim, lean and lithe.
Really? If I really did, I would be. There's a part of me that likes the
curves and the cappuccino ice cream, enough to want to keep them in my
life. The pencil slim business is just a vague notion of the ideal, not
the outcome I actually choose-at least for now.
Want to be Numero Uno in your company? Really? Are you seriously
willing to do what is required? Have you done it? Because that's the only
genuine proof of will, don't you think?
Or is it time you found out what's really in your Glass Cage™?
About the author: Catherine Palin-Brinkworth is
an international presenter, consultant and author on business and personal
success strategies. She holds a Masters Degree in Social Ecology and is a
Certified NLP Practitioner.
A powerful, inspirational presenter with practical and
proven success skills and strategies, Catherine is in constant demand as a
keynote speaker. Her web site is www.catherinepalinbrinkworth.com