Make Success a Possibility
I should really start a column titled “Stuff Inspired by Magazines Found in My Girlfriend’s Apartment,” because I’d like to start this week’s Inner Game article with a reference to an interview Michelle Obama recently did for More magazine.
I won’t delve into the details, but the basic gist of the interview was this: knowing that there are opportunities available is integral in pursuing said opportunities. For instance, knowing that it’s possible for a poor schmuck to start a company and become a billionaire CEO is inspiring to other fellows with big dreams and little capital. While most rags-to-riches stories are anecdotal and not indicative of the norm, the idea of envisioning a life beyond the box each of us are born into is crucial to any type of real change in our lives.
Over the past few years, I’ve come to realize a few things. One, while “Saved by the Bell” is still watchable, I have a hard time sitting through a half hour of “Ducktales.” Two, some of my friends have made goals and realized their dreams and others haven’t even considered the possibility of success.
I’m friends with people with serious talents and skills who work menial jobs and hate their lives because they can’t see past their current station. It’s certainly not out of any lack of opportunity for some of these guys. Most of my friends come from decent homes and attended college. Some just had positive attitudes, realized they could succeed and did. The ones less-off haven’t even tried. You talk about success with some of them and it’s not even a possibility. They might as well come out and say “I’m totally cool with living in a shitty apartment, playing Xbox all day and letting my college degree go to complete waste.”
The thing is, it is possible to rise above one’s sorry lot in life without being some kind of one-in-a-million former janitor-turned-business tycoon. It starts with the right attitude. How far can you get thinking success is something only attained by “them”? By realizing that you are just as worthy of success as the next guy, you give yourself that much more of a chance. By opening up your eyes to the possibility of achievement, you become aware that you too can be one of “them.” Growing up in an awful household in a horribly disadvantaged obviously has an effect on one’s psyche. Seeing success as something attainable, no matter how hard you’ve had it or how bad the odds, is necessary to even taking the first step.
Whether it’s approaching the girl of your dreams or scoring a sweet job, knowing that success is within the realm of possibility is incredibly beneficial. Without ambition, we’d be living in a different world. We’d have no iPad, no Beatles, no cage fights, nothing. Without the idea of success being within reach, there’d be no one striving for anything. Take the first step and your goals will be that much more attainable.
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About John Brhel John Brhel is a freelance writer from upstate New York that enjoys picking apart life's idiosyncrasies and listening to Huey Lewis & the News.