Create your own Possibilities

March 1, 2012 by Lesli Grainger Lowe

No one says it better than Clint Eastwood, “Do you feel lucky? Well, do ya?” – Well, do you?  How often has a friend called you with some exciting news about a new job or promotion, and you thought to yourself, man are they lucky?  Do you forego purchasing lottery tickets, entering the Publishers Clearing House sweepstakes, or pursuing that dream job or promotion because you think only good things happen to lucky people? 

President Thomas Jefferson once said, “I am a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.”  An unknown author also wrote, “Never mention the word luck around a self-made man.”  There is surely wisdom in these quotes, whether you believe in luck or not.  All situations have an outcome; positive or negative, lucky or unlucky.  Many outcomes may be beyond our control, but we can increase the amount of positive outcomes by investing the right amount of time and energy to give chance a favorable hand up.  Create your own possibilities and good fortune by following a few key steps that highly effective and successful people do:

Step 1:  Be Goal Oriented 

It’s hard to hit a moving target, much less a target that does not exist.  One of the best ways to be successful in any endeavor is to have a clear objective; a starting point and a destination.  A good place to start is to create a spreadsheet of personal and professional goals.  In a five column spreadsheet, list each goal in column one, the target date to achieve the goal in column two, the resources you will need (money, time, people) in column three, the course of action in column four, and why that goal is important in column five.  For example one of your goals may be to find a job as a C++ Developer in the next six months, working for a Fortune 500 Technology or Communications company in the Atlanta area, and you’ve determined that you will need the help of a highly reputable Technical Recruiter to achieve this goal.

Once you have all your goals entered, prioritize them in the order of importance and whether they are short term or long term goals, and then start taking concrete steps towards reaching each goal. 

Maintaining a spreadsheet of goals will allow you to easily monitor progress and setbacks, and modify the course of action when necessary.  Successful people never lose sight of their goals and objectives, even when unexpected hurdles arise.  Temporary setbacks may feel unlucky, but they can be overcome by staying on task and never losing sight of the target. 

Step 2:  Stay Motivated 

With goals in hand, successful people know that positive results are the rewards of timing and execution, and only achieved through self-motivation and discipline.  A great way to stay motivated is to understand your peaks and lows, and strengths and weaknesses.  For example, if you are more productive in the mornings, use that time to work on your most dreaded action items, so you can focus on your favorite tasks during the time of day you would otherwise feel less motivated.   

Another way to stay motivated is to have a role model, someone who has achieved the results you would like.  Check out an autobiography of a role model to learn how they succeeded, and apply those best practices to your own set of goals where appropriate.

Step 3:  Learn New Things

Have you ever heard the phrase, “When you stop learning, you start aging?”  Knowledge is one of the basic needs of mankind.  Without knowledge we cannot thrive.  What separates man from prime mates may not be our opposable thumbs, but instead our ability to ask questions, to seek answers, and to formulate theories.   

Successful people are involved in lifetime of continuous learning, whether formal or informal, for personal or professional reasons.  The World Wide Web has opened the door to a world of free and accessible knowledge to anyone with internet access.  It’s like getting an academic scholarship to every university across the globe, all at the touch of a finger. 

Knowledge is power and can turn chance into good fortune.   Take advantage of learning opportunities available to for continued personal and professional growth, and to avoid repetition and stagnation.

So stop looking for that four leaf clover, or waiting on the Luck of the Irish to shine down on you.  Through perseverance, motivation, and action, you can turn chance into more than just dumb luck; you can turn it into measurable, sustainable, and positive results.  GOOD LUCK! 

Questions or Comments?  

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Peak Resource Group

Peak Resource Group

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