“Success is the realization of the estimate you place upon yourself.”
Sometimes, people set up goals for themselves and then find reasons to keep themselves from making any meaningful progress toward those goals. Perhaps you’ve run into people who have established “deserve levels” for themselves—levels of income, or happiness, or career satisfaction that they never go much above or much below, despite the opportunity to do so.
Think about financial goals. Even people who have work situations that allow for wide disparities in monthly income totals—salespeople, say, or home entrepreneurs—somehow manage to keep themselves from moving much outside of this so-called “comfort level.” Although people will say that they want to be able to increase their incomes, they’ll often find some way to link the attainment of that goal to someone other than themselves, and their small steps won’t match up with the big goals they’ve set up. The distance between where they are and where they want to be is measured in excuses: “If only someone would take over the job of organizing things...” “If only our financial system were better targeted...” “If only I had the energy I once had...”
There are far too many unfortunate souls on this earth who think that, once they figure out what life’s all about, they’ll be able to press the “rewind” button and run themselves back to, say, age 21—or any other time when “things were better.” Sad to say, people don’t come equipped with such a button. For these poor folks, life slips by, day by day, as they wait for someone or something to show them the way.
What they’re waiting for, when you get right down to it, is the “guy on the white horse”—the person who will tackle all the mysteries, solve all the problems, ride in and rescue them. While they’re waiting for this person to show up, they disengage. Let me share a secret: You have instant access to the “man or woman on the white horse”—the person on whom our safety and success depends—at any time. All you have to do is look down, and you’ll see that you’re sitting astride that “white horse.”
You are the guy on the white horse! You are the only person who’s qualified to change your present and, thereby, change your future. Don’t wait for great occasions to step forward as your own hero; don’t assume that someone else is blocking your way. Seize common occasions for positive personal change, and make them great.
The time to commit yourself to developing the most efficient plan possible to achieve your goals is right now. And the person who must carry out that plan is you. As someone once said, “If it is to be, it is up to me.”
Immediate Action: Think about how can you take action, today, to address a challenge you had once believed to be someone else’s responsibility. Waiting for someone else to achieve a goal for us means abandoning that “molded-in-clay” goal—before it’s been put into permanent form!
Point to Ponder Before You Go On: Remember: A bad habit—like waiting for the guy on the white horse—can become so strong that it can be mistaken for destiny. Don’t let that happen to you!
Excerpted from Danny’s book, There Are No Limits: Breaking the Barriers in Personal High Performance