“Because your own strength is unequal to the task, do not assume that it is beyond the powers of man; but if anything is within the powers and province of man, believe that it is within your own compass also.”
– Marcus Aurelius
If there were only one common thread between the billions of auspicious people in the world, this would be it. Starting where you are is crucial because more often than not people try to start from where they were or where they’d like to be, which is akin to starting from a place that doesn’t exist. It’s not uncommon for people to view their current situation, despite all that they may have going for them, as the epitome of despair, and because of this they never move beyond their starting point.
There aren’t too many things on this Earth that are worse than wasted talent, and successful people are masters at avoiding this by the simple fact that acknowledge where they are and take one step after another in the direction that they want to go.
Its Your Fault
Hopefully that isn’t too shocking of a statement, but if it is then good – maybe that’s just what you needed to hear to get the ball rolling. I was at a seminar in Toronto, and while having lunch with John Berardi and some of his colleagues, I heard him say something that had pretty profound impact on my thinking from that point on – “If I’m giving a talk and my audience doesn’t understand what I’m talking about its not their fault – I just haven’t done a good enough job of explaining it.” By taking away the option of blaming his audience and using them as an excuse for not getting his point across, John highlighted an important point – excuses are debilitating, and successful people take no stock in them.
We would all do well to remember this point. Extenuating circumstances aside, the successes and failures that you experience in life are entirely your fault. Are you fatter than you’d like to be? You ate too much and moved too little. Are you making as much money as you’d like to? Are you living the kind of life that you want? You get the picture. It is only when we stop blaming everyone else for our lack or results in any area of life that we can begin to move forward.