Showing posts with label opportunity. Show all posts
Showing posts with label opportunity. Show all posts

Friday, March 14, 2014

What If a Golden Opportunity Knocked?

By Douglas Clark

There is always a golden opportunity coming your way. Whether you recognize it or want to admit it, there can always be a better situation resulting from your actions. The flip side of course is disaster lurks behind every decision, ready to strike like a Viper.

Recognizing the opportunities in front of you is not always easy. Roadblocks like stress, pride, fear, despondency, fatigue, or arrogance get in the way. Truth is, most people probably miss golden opportunities because they feel overwhelmed by the change they would bring. Familiarity with your current situation is comforting. As the cliche says "the devil you know is better than the one you don't", but it is that very complacency that gets in the way of improvement and success. 

I felt stuck in a rut for a long time. I wanted to grow, take on a new career challenge, improve, but for years, (I'm sad to admit), I avoided it. Oh sure, I'd complain, but not really take action to force a change. One day I hit a tipping point and decided I must do something different or that creative, motivating drive inside of me would die. So I got a new job.

Granted, starting a new job is scary. It's also disruptive and uncomfortable. I noticed simple things like my gym and lunch routine were vastly different, but you know what? I needed that. 

I have watched people I know including myself, squander opportunities, repeatedly. It's frustrating because you know if they just seize that opportunity a lot of good things will come their way. And yet they flounder. Remember those roadblocks I mentioned? I think fear is the strongest one. Fear of failure, the unknown, making a mistake, and even fear of success all crowd out the basic truth that without a new course of action the same results or worse will occur.

Thanks Einstein. Don't let fear control you. "Fear is the mind killer". Don't be a slave to it. Use your fear as a catalyst, not an anchor. Let that fear drive you towards success, not cower under the covers. Your adventure and success in life come from slaying the monster that lurks under your bed. That's the story people want to hear and what you need to live. Get to being the hero of your life book. End the chapter of fear and start writing the Chapter of Success.

Yes it can be done. Just seize that golden opportunity!

Thanks for reading.

Questions and Comments are welcome.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

What Legacy to Leave

No legacy is so rich as honesty. (All’s Well that Ends Well -- Act iii, Sc. 5) William Shakespeare

Have you ever thought about life after your own? I’m not talking about anything supernatural, heaven, or the afterlife. I’m talking about the impression you leave behind after you are gone. It’s an unavoidable truth that one day each of us will draw our last breath and part from this world. In a way it makes all that we do and all that we say that much more poignant and precious, because we only get one chance. Think for a moment of what life would be like without you. All of society will roll on just as it has before you, only now, if you’ve done it right, you’ll have left a mark that is immutable and distinctly you. I think leaving a legacy of good behind is vital.

For argument’s sake let’s say we all have 100 years of earthly life given to us. What will you do with that time? Each life is different and unique and the choices we make mold and shape that life and us into the individuals we all are. Some of those choices are good, some bad. What we do with those lives is entirely up to us. There are those who are self-centered and egotistical, searching only for things that make themselves happy. There are those who strive for altruism and look out for others, doing whatever they can to better the lives of those around them. Many of us fall somewhere in between, which is to say we try to live good lives and occasionally put ourselves first in the pecking order of life. Now that’s not a bad thing because if you can’t take care of yourself you can’t take care of anyone else; it’s the balance between selfishness and givingness that’s the key. We can’t all get everything we’ve ever wanted, that’s just unrealistic and if you devote your life to acquisition, whether it be for fame, fortune or power, you may very well achieve those goals, but when it’s all over, what do you leave behind?

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say what you leave behind should be a positive thing. Although, it might be hard to say exactly what counts as valuable in a subjective sense; one person might say a fortune left to heirs is positive, another might say the example of a good life is better. Even others might say the propagation of their religion or ideology is paramount. So what is positive, and what counts as a lasting legacy of good?

My belief is that if you continue to learn and improve on the person you were yesterday, avoid making the same mistakes, keep an open mind, learn from other people the best you can, and never give up to apathy and despair, your life will continue to improve. Striving to an ideal is great so long as you only compare yourself to what you have achieved, not what you think you should be. We all know no one is perfect, but continual self-improvement is an example everyone that knows you can take with them and emulate, as well as pass on to others. 

Over the course of a lifetime, you can make a difference. If you continually fail, try another approach, seek advice, model yourself after those who have succeeded and keep going. If you only have 100 years to make a life worth knowing about, each moment is precious, but they are also opportunities to reassert yourself and move forward. It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it. Think of it this way, if your life was a book, would anyone want to read about it? I for one want to leave behind a best seller. What about you?

Thanks for reading. Questions and Comments are welcome. 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Knock Knock!

A wise man will make more opportunities than he finds.  ~Francis Bacon

How often do you create opportunities for success in your life? You might have heard the old saying “Opportunity only knocks once,” or “When opportunity knocks, answer it”. They’re cute little sayings aren’t they? But do you notice something about the way they are structured? I’ll give you a minute to reread them….

Did you see it? Well, if you saw what I saw you’ll recognize that both of those sayings are rather passive in regards to you and what you should do. Think about it. Opportunity knocks, meaning it will come to you. Really? I’ve always had this sort of ridiculous notion that opportunity was like a cloud of positive energy that would one day float by my apartment door and lightly rap upon my door knocker. All I had to do was wait. Now I realize that’s an incredible waste of time.

If we think about what Francis Bacon says about opportunity, we should all be out hunting that misty cloud of energy trying to wring out all the opportunity we can get. And that’s exactly what you should be doing. Getting out there and making things happen is what life should be about. There’s a reason why couch potatoes aren’t wildly successful, except knowing what’s on TV; they aren’t doing anything. You can’t seize the day if you’ve already seized the couch.

Just a few days ago, I once again submitted some of my writings to a publisher. In fact, I submitted another short story and several poems. No one is going to come knocking on my door begging me to submit my stories to their magazine. So I’ve got to make those publishing opportunities happen myself. And I’m going to have to continue to foster those opportunities if I want to be successful. You might not be an aspiring author, but I’m sure there’s something positive you’d love to be doing right now; some dream you always wanted to come true…

The question is, what are you doing to make that dream come true?

Thanks for reading. Questions and comments are welcome.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Do You Need Recognition?

How much have you accomplished in your life? Is it a lot or just a little? Are you satisfied with the things you have done or do you feel the need to excel, to strive, and continue onward? For me, life is an ever expanding opportunity to experience more and attempt new things. I'm still working on finishing my novel. I've got one chapter to go for a completed draft and I can tell you I'm a much better writer for the attempt. For the most part, I don’t need others’ approval or blessing when attempting something new; I’m not overly concerned with their praise or validation either. However, I would admit that a bit of recognition once in a while is really important, dare I say needed. Now I’m not waiting around for people to stop me on the street and point their finger at me and scream like I’m some kind of rock star, or have to paparazzi chase me down for a quick snap shot. It is nice though, to be appreciated and know your efforts are at least worth someone taking note.

But how much do you need to be lauded, praised and applauded? Do you need it at all? With so many people in the world, it’s almost impossible to not get lost in the crowd. The law of averages almost assures that most of us will be the anonymous majority, but that doesn’t mean you have to be average, or mediocre. You can always strive to be your best and make a lasting impact, even if it’s only toward the ones you love. But mediocrity, don’t let it overshadow who you are. It reminds me of the last scene from the movie Amadeus. Salieri laments that he is nothing compared to Mozart and that fact drove him mad.

Salieri’s obsession with things he had no control over became too much. His fatal flaw lay in the fact that he constantly compared himself to Mozart, instead of measuring is own abilities and talents against himself. There’s a danger in wanting recognition, and that danger is the fact that comparisons will always be drawn to competitors, peers, contemporaries, etc. In my view, that’s a trap. So don’t get caught in it. Only compare yourself with yourself and always try to improve on the previous version. You might just keep your sanity. At the very least you’ll know where you’ve been and how much you have improved.

Can you think of a specific time you got lost in competition with others? Was it worth it?

Thanks for reading. Questions and Comments are welcome. 

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Most of us regard good luck as our right, and bad luck as a betrayal of that right.

- William Feather (read about him here)

Disappointment can be a hard thing to deal with, especially if you’ve worked really hard at something.  Putting forth real effort to reach your goal, to drive toward your mission is always a great achievement, but there’s something so deflating when you don’t reach your goal due to no fault of your own.  Sometimes, things or people get in your way and you fail, not because you didn’t try, but because your efforts were thwarted by circumstances, or by other people.  Unfortunately, you may encounter people in your life who actually try to sabotage your endeavors.  Sometimes they do this because they are ignorant of your aims and inadvertently get in the way.  Sometimes, they are deliberately vindictive or jealous, and actively attempt to ruin your work.  Yes, there is that type of ugliness in the world and I’m sure you have experienced it.  I myself have been the target of nefarious individuals at one time or another in my life.  And let me tell you it is not pleasant. 

It would be one thing to fail because you gave up, or because you simply weren’t good enough, but when another individual deliberately stands in your way and tries to make you fail, it’s a despicable thing.  So how do you handle that?  What do you do?  It would be a cope out to say ‘just live with it’ and it would also be dismissive to say ‘just think positively.’  Those cliché type pieces of advice don’t really help at all.  If you really do have someone that is deliberately trying to sabotage your goals, the best thing to do is eliminate them from your life.  Cut them out completely and do not let them back in.  I knew someone that took every opportunity to try and degrade me, insult me, slander my name and deliberately lie about me to try and influence people to dislike me.  I know the quality of my character and anyone worth knowing would take the time to get to know me as a person, not just the lies of a malcontent trying to break someone down instead of building themselves up.  As soon as I cut off all contact with that person and redirected my life on a new course, guess what!  My life became so much more enjoyable, meaningful, and most of all, positive. 

You DO NOT have to allow negative, self-interested and destructive people into your life.  If you have found someone like that has crept in, evict them.  You are the one that has to live your life and the world will make it difficult just by its nature.  Don’t assist the forces of despair and negativity.  Situate yourself so positive, uplifting people can assist you in your goals, and help drive you toward your mission.  That way, when disappointment does strike, it will have much less power than it would otherwise.  Positivity is great, but structuring your life to accentuate the positiveness of the people around you is even better.  Go ahead, set yourself up for success!

Understanding Pandemics

By Doug Clark Head Writer -  The Inspiration Engine With all that is going on with Covid 19, I thought it would be a good idea to help ...