In my head, when I wrote this title I think I was channeling my inter Jerry Seinfeld. I really miss his show and watch the reruns whenever I can. However, my kids don’t really seem to get it.
I had always wanted to teach a class on success. I consider myself successful – others tell me that I am successful, but I think for the point of this article it’s important that you know that I believe that I am not there yet. I think there is a lot more for me to do and achieve. At 47 (that’s right – I am telling my age) I believe that I am just getting started. Because of teaching at UNC – Charlotte and running an internal mentoring program at AvidXchange (with both employee and interns) I have found out a few things about success that I wanted to pass on to the rest of the world.
Have you ever notice that solving other people’s problems are easy than solving your problems? That’s because they are your problems and the bigger the problem the less ability you have to be creative and think outside the box. However, problems and obstacles are the root and basis of all success. People have a tendency view successful people as being lucky or folks that were given something that you don’t have access to. It’s not true. Take as an example famous people who are famous for no reason (I won’t name their names because I physically can’t bring myself to type them). Just because someone is on TV and have what seems to be a lot of money. That doesn’t mean they are successful. As I painfully watch reality TV because my wife loves it and I love her, the more and more I think about it the more I realize there is no one on any of those shows that are successful. Money and fame can be a detractor to success.
The more I study the more I come to realize that success is not passing people by or eluding people, it just that they don’t know what it is. When you don’t know what something is (like success) then there is no way to know if you have it or not. That’s why I have made a persistent and conscious effort to teach people who in order to be successful you must have two things:
- A Definition – Tricky thing about success is you can’t touch it or grab it so the definition you come up with can’t be touched or grabbed either. (Like a car, house or title – that’s not success) Material things are outcomes of successes but not success. If you are interested, I will share my definition of success but you will have to contact me because I don’t really want to publish it.
- A Plan – Without a path, road or direction – any road will take you were you are going. I know I didn’t get the quote right but without details you are left to whims, changing winds and worst of all pointless and meaningless daily activities which is what creates depression and the idea that your life, business or direction is meaningless. The opposite of this is when you have a plan you have hope and you have motivation and when you hit on difficult times you keep working the plan and fighting.
Don’t sign up to be a victim. Having a proactive and intentional life is exciting and fulfilling. It’s never too late to start and great news – starting is easy. First define and then plan.
About The Author:
Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people who started AvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact us for more information