There are many personal challenges in life, such as illness and death of those close to you, marriage, birth of a child, a divorce. For me , it’s been a career change for my wife and subsequent sale of a home with a move and purchase of a new home. Some say successful people just got lucky. It is often said, luck is when preparedness meets opportunity. Be a Rules For Success follower so you can be prepared and create your own opportunities and well – get lucky.
I am again fortunate myself to have a fantastic member of the LDI team, Cindy Lee. During this move and transition she penned Rule 44, “Be tenacious!”
When you’re not being tenacious, be persistent instead!
Our last Success Rule, Don’t Let The Insecurities Of Others Affect Your Dreams, talked about how other people can affect your success. What about how life affects your success?
In the mid 1980’s success was something I never thought I’d see. At that particular point in my life, I was struggling with many things on many levels. In an effort to regain some sanity in my life, I began seeing a counselor. One of the roles of a counselor is to identify ones strengths and build on them. One assignment was for me to make a list of what I thought my strengths were. My list was rather short. The counselor, having known me for some time, started adding things to the list I had created. One of those things was tenacity.
Tenacity? I wasn’t even sure what that was. She explained that it’s like being an old bulldog with a bone. No matter how hard you try to get it away from him, that old dog isn’t giving up that bone. She was right.
Unable to work, I was recovering from major surgery, struggling with a divorce and custody hearings, financial issues, extended family problems, depression and the taking-one-step-forward-three-steps-back syndrome. But, as the counselor pointed out, I was still taking that one step forward.
It was during that time period that I signed up for clerical classes and learned about the new technology of the word processor. I brushed up on typing, filing, business math and whatever else would be useful in an office environment. The one-step forward became two as I re-entered the work force. I hung onto that bone and one by one, I overcame each of the obstacles that once seemed insurmountable.
Learning as much as I could in each position I held, I moved up through different places of employment into various levels of management. When technology advanced, I took night classes and continued to advance as well. Feeling stagnant after eight years with one company, I picked up and moved across the state into to an entirely new field, never letting go of the idea that employment was a means to an end. For me that meant someday not having to get up and go to work.
Today, I have a great husband, three grown children who have given me eight grandchildren; I work from home doing what I love and I choose not to let family opinion dictate my feelings. The ratio of steps has changed to many-steps-forward with the occasional one-step-back. And, I continue to hang onto that bone! Now my bone includes not giving up on the people I love.
When you feel like you are stuck in the three-steps-back mode, remember that you are still taking that all important one-step-forward. Be that bulldog…and hang on to that bone!
Leader Development Institute