Many people are waiting for things to slow down or speed up, change or get back to normal, get easier or better before starting their next project or working towards their goal. My experience is that there is no right time or perfect moment. In hind sight, the right time has generally been when I started the task. If I would have waited for the economy to improve, I never would have started my first company 23 years ago and learned some valuable lessons by working through a challenging market and dealing with unforeseen events. It’s great to leverage success and momentum to achieve new heights. Failure and setbacks are great teachers too. I have likely learned more from what went wrong than what went right throughout my career and life. You probably have too. Failure and challenge is a bitter pill very few are willing to swallow. Yet, I believe it is one of the critical components of becoming and remaining successful.
Here is a little story that supports my belief that success often starts with failing forward:
Thomas Edison: Chances are you have heard of Edison in relation to overcoming failure. He was a master of “trial and error”.
When asked about his many failures in attempting to create the light-bulb he famously said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 1,000 ways that won’t work.“ As with many other inventors and creators there is a back story. As a child he was thought to be dumb and was told that he would never be a success by many of his teachers, because his mind would often wander in class.
Good thing for us that one of the greatest inventors ever did not listen to his critics and detractors.
“My great concern is not whether you have failed, but whether you are content with your failure.”
Taking the initiative is probably at least 50% of what’s required to succeed. Planning, evaluating, assessing and strategizing are important but too many people take the ready, aim, aim, aim… approach and never pull the trigger on the actions required. Acting, even if you don’t feel like it, when you’re tired, uncertain of all the details, struggling through family issues or work problems is when things usually happen. Looking back I’m amazed of how much was achieved and the impact my actions or decisions had in spite of having the perfect plan. A big part of success is simply showing up and being consistent, passionate and determined.
The perfect moment is now – what are you waiting for?
“Today is yours to shape. Create a masterpiece!”