By Comfort Barida
What do you see when you look at this gun? This Latin phrase Amat Victoria Curam translated in English means victory loves preparation. Imagine pointing a gun with only a bullet to kill an enemy and when you fire it, your gun jams and fails to fire. Just like every appliance, a gun requires good care whether it is in use or not. You have to clean it occasionally, couple it back, and test it to ensure that it works perfectly.
Students who seem to work the hardest in class are usually the ones who get the best grades. Same way it takes time to get accustomed to getting up early, it can take a while to become someone who will fight on despite setbacks and challenges. But you have to learn the skill you need to continually apply more pressure to yourself. Everyone wants to be successful until they see what it actually takes. If you crave success in something and desire to enjoy the benefits, then you have to approach it with preparation. For instance, a Ballerina has to go through a lot of training and practice with an instructor to build the core muscles and strength to be able to stand on her toes. Same goes for the athletes who spend far more time in training than in any competition. In every aspect of life, for you to attain success you must prepare for it. There has never been a success story that didn’t go with efforts and preparation. No country ever embarks on war without preparing for it.
Define what Success means to you
You cannot have success if you do not know what it means for you. When you think of success what is the first thing that pops up in your head? Everyone views success differently and using another person’s standard for success is like walking in someone else’s shoes and expecting to love it. America’s renowned poet Maya Angelou said “success is liking yourself, liking what you do and liking how you do it”. Whereas former British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill said “success is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm”. Winston Churchill was kept out of office for 10 years (1929-1939) during a period historians refer to as “the wilderness”. Despite that, he stayed publicly active and did not give up and in 1939 he was re-elected into office. Yes, you must define what success means to you so that you know when you achieve it.
The more you are actively and practically engaged, the more successful you will feel. It is commonly said that “practice makes perfect” which simply means that if you do something many times you will learn to do it very well. You cannot expect to become a medical doctor overnight without going through the medical school. You are additionally required to do your housemanship. Same would go for lawyers, engineers, etc. Nobody becomes proficient in anything without first applying him/herself. It is better to be ready and not have an opportunity, than to have an opportunity and not be ready.
When planning for success, it is always important that you start with a positive mind-set. You must imagine becoming successful to be successful. Albert Einstein said that “imagination is more important than knowledge”. Learn to cultivate a healthy motivation when imagining your success. Find the purpose or goal of your life and make a career out of something you love doing. Finding what you love to do will give you motivation along the way. America’s inventor and businessman Thomas Edison said “success is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration”. It doesn’t matter how little your inspiration is, it would clearly go a long way. If you think you can succeed, you will definitely succeed regardless of how it might look. Always try to look like a winner. Confidence gives you a mental edge that results in victory.
Set Clear Goals
Let your goals be clear and realistic. Break your goals into small steps, create benchmarks to determine or measure your performance. For instance, you can set goals to increase your productivity, to be punctual to work or for meetings, etc. These are realistic goals that when achieved, will give you a sense of satisfaction and completion, making you feel successful and confident. Also, set a timeline for when you want to achieve your objectives. Execute your small objectives before focusing on the main objectives. Give yourself a timeline that is difficult but doable. For instance, buying a private jet in 3 years is not reasonable but being an owner of an income generating investment or business is doable.
Success does not come overnight. It needs a lot of hard-work, persistent efforts and failures to climb up the ladder. People succeed when they realise that their failures are sometimes preparatory to their victories. American inventor, Thomas Edison said “I have not failed, I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work”. He didn’t let his failure define him, rather he learnt from it. Always learn from your failure. Do not make excuses or rationalise your failure by placing the blame on someone or something else. Always be on the look-out for opportunities. Don’t wait for it to fall in your lap but rather sniff them out. Study your risks, make sure the odds are in your favour and take a bold step. It is always helpful to surround yourself with success-driven and positive people. You can bounce ideas off them and they can bring you the right network. Gather as much information as you can either from research or by asking a mentor. Think outside-the-box and step out from your comfort zone.
Comfort Barida is a legal practitioner and works in the editorial team of Financial Freedom