From time to time, people ask me about how people become wealthy.  Most of those who ask to believe that hard work and long hours are automatically pre-requisites to accrue tremendous wealth.  I hate to burst their bubble, but I can give anyone numerous examples of friends and colleagues of mine over the years that did neither of those…they did not work extraordinarily hard, and they did not give away their lives for 5-10-20 years to “arrive.”  Even looking back at my life, one of the most significant returns I experienced was an investment in a fish food company, buying a 4% interest for $20,000.  After Walmart chose them as one of their preferred suppliers, the company caught the eye of a publicly-traded company, and all of us were bought out, my 4% interest turning into $1.1 million!  Hard work?  Lots of time?  Neither!  

Can you choose the formula of hard work and long hours for success?  Sure, but there is no guarantee, and I can describe numerous stories of those who failed along that exact path and, in the process, made a tremendous sacrifice in their personal lives…some even abandoning the relationships that they determined later was the essential part of their lives.   Some of these scars never heal.  By the time they figured it out, there was no reason to start all over again… and no time.  The exercise they just went through totally robbed them of any belief in accomplishing their dreams, living their dream lives, making the difference they wanted, which would define their lives…and even more importantly, the change they wanted to see in this world.  So, the impact of coming up short can also rob you of your future…but only if you allow it.  I prefer to view every experience as just that…a learning process to eventually get you where you are headed!

But when we align success exclusively with working hard and spending endless hours, I call that result “doubling down” on limited thinking.  First of all, if you believe that hard work and dedication will always produce terrific results, you have faulty thinking.  There are so many variables that are involved in success.  Timing, the idea itself, competition, market trends, decisions along the path, collaboration, or lack thereof, just pure bad luck…the possible reasons are endless.  We all need to estimate the probability of success as we don’t want to take flyers, but no investment is a sure thing, especially those someone guarantees!  

So, what is one of the essential elements of success?  First comes the clarity and definitive decision in your mind.  It is amazing how many entrepreneurs are indecisive and focus more on why it should not work versus all the reasons it will.  Yes, awareness of the possible pitfalls is crucial so that plans can be made…especially projects that will support your avoidance of those potential pitfalls.  However, choose to refer to all of those as challenges that you will overcome.  Then, decide to move forward with a definitive plan for achieving the goal.  Any vagueness in the thinking will stop you from moving forward with the strength of your conviction.  Without clarity and an ALL IN commitment, you have a plan purely based on luck or whim. 

The formula of a Great Idea plus a Burning Desire is nothing new!  There are great men, thought leaders who discussed this at great length and accomplished incredible results in their lives from as early as Napoleon Hill.  Notice the power of the human mind in all of this formula.  First, where do the great ideas come from?  They start with us, freeing our mind from limiting beliefs.  If you have determined thinking, those “great ideas” will be negated by “all the reasons why not.”  Choosing to start with a foundation that “anything is possible” allows the mind to expand on all possibilities freely.  Every great inventor never allowed “all the reasons why not” to stop them as there will always be reasons why not.  Use those thoughts to fine-tune your idea, not rob you of possibilities.  Put all the vagueness behind you and be crystal clear on exactly what you want!  

Desire, determination, and definiteness of purpose…all are required to reach success.  If you allow doubt to enter in, it is like putting nails in your car’s tires and expecting high performance.  Too many entrepreneurs do this, allowing their negative thinking to question the possibility of success.  So, always remember, as a man thinketh, so is he.  The power of your positive mind will create your results!