Why do some people advance and others don’t? Some take advantage of opportunities and create new relationships while others don’t. I can sum it up in one word: initiative. I have interviewed quite a few high school and college students and have taught at a state university and found the majority of students did not know their strengths and passion. Over 80 percent lacked the needed self-awareness about their personal design and purpose to engage in self-driven behavior.
I recently interviewed one student who seemed to stand out from the rest. At age 15 he began attending a community college. Later I found out that he was home schooled and that he has very high aspirations. This was very refreshing. I was impressed by his resume at age 16. He has done some of the following:
- Started an Art Club and is working to influence the community through the arts.
- Attended town art meetings to grow the college art club
- Become president of the political science club
- Started a property management business in his neighborhood
- Will be completing his black belt in Karate next year
- Student representative for curriculum reviews at his local college
- Serves as a student representative for a consortium of Universities to improve and develop their curriculla
- Won a scholarship to the BIF Conference, Business Innovation Factory, allowing him to build his entrepreneur network
- Mastered playing the drums and plays in a large band
- Is Working On a research project on intrinsic motivation in students
The majority of what he accomplished or will complete was in the last year. It was clear that this young man took initiative to pursue his passions and leverage his strengths. With this momentum at his age, it is likely to become another Steve Jobs. He doesn’t know what he wants to do in life yet, but he is well on his way.
Thinking about this young man’s drive and passion for success I came up with a few distinctions. If embraced it can help anyone in their journey of achievement.
- Tap into your inner drive and passion and harness it
- Don’t be afraid to take risks and make mistakes
- View your world as a blue ocean of opportunities and not a bunch of constraints.
- Be passionate about making a difference in the world
- Add value where ever you go. Don’t worry about who gets the credit.
- Take initiative and step out of your comfort zone
- Build your network with people who are more knowledgeable than yourself
- Recognize the importance of building relationships
- Apply yourself and work hard to develop expertise
- Dream, the sky is the limit, and don’t let limitation hold you back
If you are going to achieve something in life, I believe embracing some of the above items will help you get on your way. This young man has what it takes to make it. Perhaps you and I could take on some of these attributes to succeed as well.
We spent an hour at Verizon this morning buying the new iPhone 4S. What an amazing piece of electronics. It integrates your communications into one package creating a powerful, elegant solution which includes internet, voice, apps(tools), social networks, visual interaction kinesthetic(touch) audio, planning, synchronizing, and more. It’s an all in one and that is why so many people like this Apple product. It is an integrated communication tool that helps you manage your social and work life.
The days of electronic fragmentation with devices are gone. You don’t need a phone, iPod touch, and iPod classic, and computer any more. This fragmentation lends itself to compartmentalizing your life. Since this is a website about personal development and achieving greatness, you probably know where I am headed in this post.
The iPhone is about powerful communication. The essence of our lives is about communication as well. Everything we do has to do with some form of communication. Integration versus fragmentation in our personal and work lives can really mess us up. It can become an energy drain and lead to lots of frustrations.
When we experience fragmentation we are unable to integrate our strengths, skills, values, motivations, and learning styles in a healthy environment. When we fail to live in that powerful zone or sweet spot, we often experience frustration and failure. Imagine what your personal and professional life would be like if you were able to identify and master your strengths and become a power, simple, and elegant person? You would be satisfied and would probably create wealth where ever you go and would be in great demand.
What steps could you take to get integrated so you feel life your life is converging on your strengths?
1) Take personality inventory – learn how you are wired for motivation (click here). Go to the Personality Assessments. I recommend PSI for starters.
2) Answer the “What’s My Identity” questionnaire and debrief with someone about what you learned about yourself. Go to Downloads
3) Hire a coach who can help you grow in self-awareness and experience break through in your thinking. If you are a high school student or college student, we have some scholarships available and you can get feedback for free. Click here to contact us.
Don’t delay, invest in your future. Take these actions steps to move closer to a place of greater satisfaction and experience the joy of achievement. You will not regret it.