No. 36

Some time back I heard about a real estate developer in California who made a fortune by developing an idea that all the other developers had overlooked. It seems there was a tract of land in his area that was a swamp and considered worthless by everyone who looked at it. However, this developer got the idea of digging canals throughout the area and when the swamp drained, he was left with choice lots where each home had a private boat dock and all the other benefits of living on a lake.
Now this true illustration should give rise to a very interesting question: why did one developer see real opportunity, while all the others did not? The answer to this question lies in the complexity of the human mind and the fact that every human being is unique. How we view the world and the circumstances we are in is closely linked to our success and to personal achievement, which is something most of us desire. There is no question that this developer is an achiever and he received both the tangible and intangible rewards that go with it.
Before I proceed, let me pose this question to you: do you consider yourself to be an achiever? If your answer was "yes", then you already know and will appreciate many of the things I'm going to say. However, if by chance your answer was "no", and you would like to become an achiever, please give some thought to what I'm saying because I can definitely help you get started off on the right foot. You know that the most important step in any journey is the first one.
At this point you may ask just what is an achiever? Well, an achiever is someone who accomplishes what he or she sets out to accomplish. In other words, an achiever is someone who has goals and persists or stays with their goals until they reach them. You have probably heard someone say about another person that "he or she is a high achiever." The difference between a high achiever and a low achiever can basically be found in what kind of goals they have. A person can only become a high achiever if they establish high goals. The same thing applies to low goals or no goals. This is the root problem for most people: they never take the time to establish definite, written, clear-cut goals, and because they have no goals, there is no way they can become an achiever.
Alfred Adler, Austrian born psychologist (1870-1937), came to the same conclusion. After a lifetime of study in this field, he became convinced that a continuous striving toward a self-chosen goal, not sex alone, is what motivates human beings. Now, I want to tell you the secret of achievement. The secret of achievement is not to let what you are doing get to you before you get to it. If you will think about this a moment, I believe you will see the truth of it. What keeps most people from becoming high achievers is that in most cases, they become discouraged and give up. In short, they quit too soon.
Let me share something called "Press On" that I believe you will find to be very appropriate. "Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent." Here is something to think about until our next visit: Set your goal and don't quit until you reach it. In other words, don’t let it get to you, before you get to it. (EDITOR'S NOTE: Jim Davidson is a motivational speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034.)