What is your ‘why’?

By on October 24, 2010
There are so many reasons as to why someone is successful or not. Look at Harvard university for example. You take a group of students who have the same teachers, receive the same information, have access to the same information. Yet only a small percentage are really successful. Why? What about the great success stories of our time, like Bill Gates? Look at some people who never went to college and became extremely successful.

My opinion is: “it is their WHY”! Their “why” was much greater than others’ “why”. If you have a big enough “why”, you can live with any what or how. People who have a big enough “why” do things that others are not willing to do.

I also think these people are good at delegating. They do what they are best at and outsource the rest. They are good team players. The list of books about success are abundant. The amount of motivational seminars and people who teach this are on every street corner. Some are good and some are not. How much hootin’ and hollerin’ can one person take? At what point do you take it upon yourself to take action? Visualization without action is delusion.

In my coaching program, the first thing I do is have a form my student must complete before I will even take them on. One thing I need to know is, why do you want this? If it is only money, I am not interested. If you’re chasing money now, you will chase money the rest of your life. The next is their “why”.  Money doesn’t make you any better than anyone else, it simply makes you more of who you already are.

Here are some of the things that might help you and will certainly make you think:

What am I working for?

What constitutes success? Who defines that?

What constitutes failure? Who defines that?

Where do my beliefs about success and failure come from?

What does it mean to be responsible for, to learn from, or just to suffer both my successes and my failures?

What roles do ambition, creativity, perfectionism, and joy play in my life and learning?

How about other factors and feelings, such as obligation, competition, integrity, achievement, chance, fear, talent, shame, necessity, obedience, curiosity, collaboration, surprise, and exploration?

What does it mean to be a good, successful, even excellent student and human being?

Michael J. Van Horn is a speaker, author, mentor and entrepreneur.

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