Successful people are a minority compared to those who have never made it big. The difference does not lie solely on the resources the person has, education, opportunity, etc. The difference is the height of the burning ambition the person has in achieving whatever goals he has set to achieve.
Ambition is not something that pushed you to start something and leave you cold after the journey has started. Chances are bumps and obstacles shall be encountered, missed goals will be normal, failure a fixture; the only way for us to be somebody is to constantly look into ourselves adjust, re-create and re-focus our ambitions. Ambition is a companion that should accompany us until we become successful in our chosen path. After success has been attained; a whole new level of ambition is required to retain our status.
During our lifetime ambition should evolve together with us otherwise we will look back as grand ma’s and pa’s telling our grandchildren that “we could have been this and that”.
What are the habits that should go with ambition?
1. Vision — Every ambition starts with a vision. This is the time when we begin to see something that other’s or most people do not. When I was a kid I would always tell my friends stories about things I felt will be happening. Guess what? They laughed. Nothing much has changed when I was growing up other than laughter evolved to complete silence. Silence of disagreement.
2. Be narrow minded — This is very bad in the eyes of most people. I believe this is required as my experiences tell me that people who doesn’t agree in your visions give you a hell of negative comments discouraging you from going after that ambition. They just can’t see what you see and its difficult to make them see what you can especially when you are 20 to 30 years younger than them. You will encounter setbacks and failures. But despite this, you should remain optimistic that there is light at the end of the tunnel.
3. Grab the opportunity that makes sense — Not all opportunities makes sense. Never believe in the saying that opportunity only knocks once in your life because if you are to become a success you should be able to make opportunity knock at your door often. There will be times that you may need to step back to succeed. Still this is opportunity at hand either directly or indirectly.
4. Be realistic — My previous slogan was “Nothing Is Impossible”. But after reading the Adidas slogan — “Impossible Is Nothing” I came to realize that dreams should still be realistic. We must learn to adjust and readjust our dreams to make them highly deliverable. Its not about lowering our standards but its about being smart in choosing the level of ambition at that time.
5. Do it for a Greater Cause One of the successful business leaders in our country gave a speech to his Alma Mater a few years back. He narrated how the Vietnamese won the battle against the Americans in world war confrontation because they had a cause to defend themselves and their country. They went there for a greater cause than their own. I also believe that if your only concern is personal wealth then becoming successful will be so near yet so far. We should have a greater cause for doing what we are doing to endure pain, obstacles, hard ships and every negative things that come your way.
6. Don’t be Evil — Google has proven how to become successful without doing Evil. Success done through evil deeds is a journey not worth taking.
7. Change — As Jack Welch would put it — “Willingness to change is a strength, even if it means plunging part of the company into total confusion for a while.”
Aside from the list given there are lots of other habits that go with Ambition that we shall discover along the way.
Remember, Never treat ambition as the starting point but as a companion that will go along your journey in life.
The Psychology of Achievement: Develop the Top Achiever’s Mindset