Too much success becomes a mental infection
that lulls us into believing we are talented and all together;
and we lose our hunger for learning, growth and improvement.
You think you want to be successful?
I submit you already are.
Unless of course you’ve given up on yourself and life.
The only time we truly fail is when we give up on our self and life.
The first step is to define what success truly means. I believe you’re successful the instant you take the first stride toward a life and goal of your own choosing.
Success does not come from a certain result or outcome.
Quite the contrary.
True success is living a meaningful and fulfilling life.
Now I know this is contrary to common mind. So what else is new? If you’ve been reading or listening to my teaching for a while, going against the collective morass is what I do; and I’m sure you know that by now.
So what is the infection of success spoken of in the title?
It’s the infection which gets us comfortable and drunk into thinking that what we have achieved is “all that.”
It’s the infection that tells us we have the system figured out and that so-called “success” (defined as external results), will go on forever.
Tell that to Studebaker, Pontiac, or any of the Detroit Big Three.
Possibly even the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl 2017?
Success is a lousy teacher.
It seduces smart people into thinking they can’t lose.
~ Bill Gates
I must admit I’ve fallen prey to this infection a time or two.
When you struggle, act boldly, take major risks, go all in for nearly 20 years, and then it finally starts to pay off in business and financial growth.
When you finally get on Oprah and the world comes rushing to your door, it’s easy to get seduced into thinking that you’ve finally paid your dues and the work has been worthwhile.
You’ve “arrived”; and it’s well earned.
Then the real-estate market tanks.
Wall Street takes a nose dive.
And a horrific accident that no one predicted sweeps your players off the chess board in one fatal swoop.
If you’re not uncomfortable right now you’re in serious danger
of life forcing major discomfort upon you. The only comfort you’re here
to experience is getting comfortable with being uncomfortable.
You can do it for yourself or it will be done to you.
Pat Riley the former coach of the champion LA Lakers calls the infection we’re discussing “the disease of me.”
According to Riley the disease causes you to think you are the success; and you lose the hunger and discipline that got you there.
Success can lull and hypnotize you into losing
your hunger for improvement; and it can make
even the most ambitious of us complacent and sloppy.
Whatever power you access is not yours. Nor will it ever be.
This is a vital distinction.
He who sweats more in training bleeds less in war.
~ Spartan Warrior Creed
Studies on the flow state prove time and again that when an extreme athlete or any of us hit flow, we realize that “we’re kicking ass but we’re not the one doing the kicking.”
This is critical to understand because the struggle to continually grow and improve allows God or Universal Intelligence or whatever name most suits you to move through you. It’s not coming from you.
It’s a gift and a blessing that’s only bestowed upon those of us who are willing to prepare and practice and improve each and every day for the rest of our days.
Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths.
When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.
~ Arnold Schwarzenegger
The moment we lose this commitment and hunger the power goes elsewhere.
Just remember that whatever you have, good or not as good, is a gift; and it’s all temporary. You must work like it’s all going away whether you’re on top or bottom.
For it is going away.
And you must never let up and never give up.
Stay Awake, Love Life and Be Epic!