I’m putting together a wee workshop I’ll be delivering in a school later in the week and was just writing an important point that, well, is important! It’s an important point of great importance, if you get where I’m going!
Anyway, here it is; I seem to be encountering a lot of people, especially the teenage people, who are under the mistaken belief that those that they see as successful, powerful or a role model got to where they are today easily and effortlessly with little hardship, struggle or fight. You know, as if it just happened for them. I know to some readers, that this may seem like a ridiculous thing to believe but let me ask you to do a quick check; how many people you have looked at during your life and thought ‘wish I was that lucky’ or ‘I could never do that’? As I’m sure many of you know, luck has little to nothing to do with it and yes you could.
Performance is one of the main places I see and hear this happen. People think that those that perform or speak in public do it with no nerves, without a second thought or piece of preparation when actually every performer you ever hear speak talks about how a little bit of nerves before going ‘on’ is good thing. The performer with no nerves tends to also have no personality!
Anyway, let me ask another question, are nerves a good thing for you?
Personally, I always get a bit nervous before I start speaking. But, for me, that’s part of the fun! I love that buzz! I’m speaking at this school on Thursday, I’m doing something in public I’ve never done before (please note: this activity is family friendly and audience appropriate!) and I’m already excited by it. The butterflies have started already as I think about how awesome its going to be.
See, that’s the point, your success or failure in any area comes down to your perception of the climb you face to get there. When the nerves start, when the difficulty arrives, when you are told to give up because you’re just not good enough, what do you do? Do you use these things as fuel or do you make them into a wall? Is one challenge, one challenge too many or could you. Face infinite challenges and keep going despite it all?
Can I add, and sorry to disappoint, I’m not advocating that any 38 year old, 25 stone Glaswegians should all of a sudden pick up their tennis racquet and think that Wimbledon 2014 is a realistic goal (that’s called wishful thinking) but I am saying that doing something is a whole lot better than doing nothing.
I’ve seen marathons run, I’ve seen weight lost, I’ve seen businesses started, I’ve seen injuries recovered, I’ve seen relationships blossom, I’ve seen dreams that really do come true.
And I’ve seen all of these things happen against the odds because even when the world says these people were wasting their time, that’s the point they dig their heels in, refuse to give up and push even harder.
Because that’s what successful people do. And, if you aren’t already, you totally have what it takes to be one. So, one last question…when are you going to start?