We are so focused on the destination and not so much on the journey, aren’t we? When translated into the pursuit of dreams, we aim so hard for success and for the prize at the end that anything less than that won’t make us happy. Really! For instance, two friends equally talented, educated, trained, hardworking and smart seek the same goal or success, but the first guy gets it while the second one does not – do you think that the second guy is less successful than the first one?
By every criterion set down by the world, the first one rates as big success. That’s by the world’s standard which recognizes the man who achieves what he has set out to do as the winner.
But I wouldn’t deem the second one a failure either because he did just as much as the first guy, was highly motivated, worked hard for what he wanted, had put in his best effort, spent the same sleepless nights toiling over papers, bleed his brains dry over problems and working out possible solutions, poured over books relevant to the task, and tapped a network of friends and peers picking brains where he decently could or allowed to. He was as tough fearless and dogged as the first guy. The same true mark of a winner and yet --- he still didn’t make it. Tough luck!
And so struck by his defeat he crumbles. But if somebody near him could and I wish that he would… I would tell him to give this guy a good kick in the butt! --Figure of speech, of course. But in my book, he is as much a success as the one who got away with the prize. Why?
Because I’m looking at 'effort' --- and the person who makes it happen. A person who stands his ground in the midst of battle, who wouldn’t buckle down when the going gets tough, who gives his utmost best to the task, who never gives up the fight down to the very end, and who fearlessly takes up the challenge and competition – that’s the stuff successful people are made of, win or lose. And I’ll bet that if given another chance he will be up front throwing his punches once more.
So what if he missed on some things that he should or could have done, failed to be perfect in the chase and suffered because of it. But he gave it his all --- his best shot. This should make him proud. Isn’t it that we are told to give our best shot to everything that we do in life? Well, he did just that and in my book – that is called success – regardless if he reached his goal or not.
And so does Fran Tarkenton think so who has this to say…
"Success, in my view, is the willingness to strive for something you really want. The person not reaching the top is no less a success than the one who achieved it, if they both sweated blood, sweat and tears and overcame obstacles and fears. The failure to be perfect does not mean you're not a success."