Do you have a hunger for success in life?
Do you have an idea how far you want to go?
Step aside of yourself today, go ahead and compete with the unseen best: that is one hidden formula for greatness that is not known to many people.
Tears can induce greatness
You have been a local champion long enough. When you are the best around and you roll out drums, you are only celebrating mediocrity.
During one of his military campaigns in Spain, Julius Caesar who was aged twenty-two was resting and reading a book on Alexander, the Great. He was lost in thought for a long time. Then, he burst into tears. His friends were surprised at his sudden outburst. They gathered around him and wanted to know the reasons for his tears. Caesar wiped his tears and looking intently into their eyes he replied, “Do you not think it is matter for sorrow that while Alexander, at my age, was already king for so many people, I have as yet achieved no brilliant success?” And, from that singular encounter, the rest is history for Caesar!
Sphere of the unseen best
There are many unseen best in your sphere of enterprise. If you are going to emerge the best of the best ever, you have to step out of your comfort soon, remove the toga of self congratulatory accomplishment and strive against the best anywhere in the global village in your life, career and leadership.
The rule of the game has changed. The world has since become a global village. We are interconnected by streams of knowledge that flows through the continents connecting the universe and stretching into eternity. Beyond that, humanity lives in a post-literate world and stands at the threshold of another epoch – an uncertain era of infinite possibilities that will make Hammurabi, Aristotle and Albert Einstein green with envy.
Lift up your eyes
Maybe you have been looking down. Looking down make you throw your weight around as a local champion. An uncertain era of infinite possibilities is unfolding around the world in space travel, technology, science, medicine, arts, leadership and governance. New things are happening around you. New trends evolve in your sphere every day.
Raise up your head and lift up your eyes. Then you can see, and be challenged that you have to do more than you are doing now. The Master told His disciples, “Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest.”
You can aspire to greatness. You can challenge your present status quo. You can rise above your current position, but have to adjust your lenses. Look beyond your accomplishments. Tackle your status quo and challenge your best in technology, commerce, leadership and governance. You still have so much to learn in order to compete with the best anywhere in the world.
You can rise above average when you set up a personal agenda to compete with the unseen best around the globe. When your output has a stamp of global best practise and you regularly benchmark your performance against the best, you are set on a higher dimension.
Clement Stone said, “Aim for the moon. If you miss, you may hit a star.”
Becoming a success in life, career and leadership does not come by sudden flight. There is always a passion, conscious choice and accompanying hard work to become one. How do you cultivate the habits of competing with the unseen best in your life, career and leadership?
You are what you read
Caesar read Alexander the Great. You are what you read! You cannot compete with the unseen best if you do not have a reading culture. Who are you reading? Great leaders have one treasure: it is their libraries, stacked with books that act as a catalyst for their personal effectiveness, innovation and greatness.
Paul, the Apostle stood before King Agrippa to defend himself. At the closing of his presentation, Festus exclaimed, “Paul, you are beside yourself! Much learning is driving you mad!” The potentates could not fault Paul’s oratory, logic and repository of knowledge.
If you are not reading, you are not learning. If you are not learning, you cannot be great. Reading is the most sublime fellowship with great minds. You enter into the sacred realm of the unseen and drink from the fountain of knowledge.
Do you have a library in your home? Not even as little as a bookshelf! Do you have an e-library on your smartphone, note or pad? You need information. You need knowledge. You can acquire these through reading and learning. What you store in your brain, know and apply are the assets you will be left with when you face life alone, in tough times, and as you transit into immortality.
You are what you watch
You should regulate your appetite and the time you spend with the television so that you can save up more time to devote to reading and learning. Do not waste away and depreciate your value in life by uncontrolled exposure to the television.
The television is a great invention but has potential impact and measurable effects on the perceptual worlds of people. A 2008 Princeton University survey report said over-exposure to the non-educational television programmes have negative influence on the development of children’s cognitive skills. Another 2010 survey of 1,300 Canadian children documented wide-ranging and long-term negative psycho-social, behavioural and cognitive consequences from increased television exposure in early childhood.
If you must compete with the unseen best, you have to learn to moderate your appetite for watching television. You are better off reading or learning. You are better off doing other productive activities such as house cleaning, gardening, sewing, knitting, meditating, reading, learning a musical instrument, learning a new language, writing journal or your memoir, solving problems, traveling, offering a helping hand in the community or handling social situations.
You complain that you do not always have time to do the most important things you want to do in life. Have you audited the amount of time you spend with television? Curtail the time you spend with television and reinvest the time you save on other activities that require intellectual and physical efforts, and watch the results within a month.
Author: Babatunde Fajimi
Article first published in The Union newspaper under CEO Mentorship on Sunday, March 29, 2015