No. 661



Have you ever thought about what it takes to succeed? While there are many ramifications and requirements to achieve true success, I can give you the answer in just one short sentence. If we are to achieve success, we must be worth more than we are being paid. If you will think about that statement, I believe you will also realize that it’s true. In every situation, if our value or contribution is greater than our compensation, then we will advance in our job or career and in every activity that fills our day. I would like to elaborate on the subject of success, if I may, because I believe what I am going to say will make achieving success much easier to identify and will help a great number of people who may feel that success has passed them by.
First, understand that in life we all receive two kinds of rewards. We receive tangible rewards and we also receive intangible rewards. Tangible rewards come to us in the form of “things” we can see and touch such as money, stocks, bonds, real estate and many others including things that represent intangible rewards. These may include trophies, certificates, ribbons, plaques, newspaper articles and other things of this nature. In each case these came because of effort and performance that was worthy of recognition. The people who receive these awards are winners, and in each case they proved they were worth more than they were being paid. I realize that some people may be rewarded because of power, position and family ties, but in time the scales will balance and they will receive exactly what they have earned. Do you know any disgraced politicians?
This is to say that in most cases, taking short cuts is not productive and will not produce lasting success. For the sake of discussion from this point forward, I would like to concentrate on “tangible” rewards, because these are the rewards that come from our job or career and they can be used to purchase a home, automobile, food, clothing, medical care, entertainment and have some left over for a rainy day. If you are gainfully employed, which is to say you are still working, are you worth more than you are being paid? Are you moving up in the organization, treading water, or have you been reassigned, laid off or fired? This will give you a good indication as to whether you are worth more than you are being paid.
To enable you to achieve even greater success, assuming you still have some things you would like to achieve, I would like to share some concepts that I believe will be of value. As a human being, realize that you have incredible self-worth. As the saying goes, “God don’t make no junk.” How you view yourself will go a long way in helping you achieve greater success, which is to say more and better rewards. If you don’t have any specific goals, please set some and write them down on paper so you can review them from time to time. At this point, ask yourself if you will need more education for the position and salary you have set for yourself.
Also, have a good understanding of the law of “cause and effect.” In time, you will receive exactly what you are earning, and this is why good character and good morals will be your ally. Without them they will become your enemy. To get ahead financially, you must develop the savings and investing habit. Set aside at least 10 percent of what you earn on a systematic basis, as the compounding principle will begin to work in your favor. I am a Christian and I tithe my income, but that is a decision you will have to make for yourself. I know that God has blessed me because I give back to Him a portion of what He has given to me.
Here is something a former high school principal told me one time that will be a real asset to your job or career. He said, “You don’t out smart people, you out work them.” Here is something I hope you will really think about. Most people work on a job and they work and work and work, but they never seem to get ahead. The reason is because they are not working with a purpose or a goal in mind. They are just working for a paycheck. The person who has a goal and has set their sights a little higher has a different attitude because they are constantly learning and looking for better ways to do things.
And finally, here is one of the most important things of all. Don’t Quit!! Hang in there and keep working with a purpose and with a goal. When the going gets tough, most people quit and they never realize how close they came to achieving success. In other words, they quit too soon. It’s been said, “The person who is lost in his work has found his future.”
As I look back over the years I have come to realize that hard work, treating others with dignity and respect, setting goals, trying to improve myself, and staying with each task until a bigger one came along has served me well. I praise God because He is faithful.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Jim Davidson is a public speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034. To support literacy, buy his book: “Learning, Earning & Giving Back.”)