The journey towards success is a path met with choices, challenges, and celebration. We don’t simply stumble upon our goals by accident. We shouldn’t just sit back and wait to magically hit “lotto numbers”. Instead, we should focus on what we want as well as on what we can control. This is the approach that makes anything achievable.
As children, we are told that we can do anything, be anyone, and that the deck of life is full of possibilities. Then as we grow up we are faced with rejections and obstacles that make us question our worth and abilities. Don’t succumb to the self-doubt, and instead channel that energy towards a plan for the future.
If we truly want success and happiness, we need to put the best possible plan in place, and take actions with intention. Keep in mind that a good plan is elastic, with a fundamental component of flexibility allowing for necessary adaptation to predictable and unforeseen roadblocks that may lie ahead.
While it can be challenging to fully digest the concept of structured fluidity it is critical to long term success. Along the way, we are going to make mistakes and fail at times. That’s okay. Don’t harp on the results, concentrate on the process. Don’t allow negative thoughts to crowd your mind, recognize the feeling, and shift your thoughts. Don’t get angry at the rain, grab an umbrella!
The same concept for success in poker holds true in our personal and professional lives. Those components are managing our financial and emotional resources intelligently. To that end, we need to have a solid strategy because we only have so many chips in front of us, and we need to be selective with which hands to play. We also need to decide how to play those hands, while managing any negative emotions when the cards don’t fall our way.
We have to ask ourselves, what are we willing to commit to? Are we going to go for it, or are we going to walk away? What are our goals? What is our purpose? As mentioned above, this is a process. Have a clear vision and desire in mind, and be willing to pivot when necessary.
Because the plan for success is dynamic which may sound daunting, I’m going to share the Personal Success Equation as offered by the Napoleon Hill Foundation and keynote speaker, Greg Reid. This formula was one of the most valuable ideas I’ve learned upon my entrepreneurial journey. I share it often with business groups, entrepreneurs, and high school age students. No matter where you are, let this soak in so you can get reenergized or off to a strong start.
PASSION and TALENT. First, do what you love, and do what you’re good at. This may sound cliché’, but the reality is that when you are playing in the game you want to play the way you want to play it, you’re in a position to be your best. It’ll also help keep you going when things get tough, as well as make victory sweeter and sustainable. If you’re at a point in life where your passions and talents are unclear to you, please do what was suggested to me. Find some quiet time, make a T-Chart with passions and talents at the top, and write all of them out on a piece of paper.
ASSOCIATIONS. Once you have a clear understanding of where your passions and talents lie, begin to think about what type of associations can amplify those passions and talents. Start to figure out who to connect with, social media is a good research tool for this. It’s said that you will be no different in 5 years than you are today except for 2 things, “the people you associate with most, and the books you read.” I personally believe that books are a metaphor for all of the things you learn. The help of coaches was invaluable to sharpening my game. Once you figure out what you want to do, find someone who has done it, learn as much as you can from them, and incorporate it into your own style.
ACTION. This is where your plan really begins to take off and develop. Use your passion, your talent, and your associations to take action whether that is a step of a business plan, or sitting down at a poker table, do something! Apply it, get feedback, and try again! I suggest this acronym for people to “ACE” their decision making in the actions they take; Assess, Calculate, and Execute, more on this decision making process another time.
FAITH. Continuing to believe in yourself and your mission when faced with challenges is where many people give up. If you’re going to do something, make a conscious decision to commit to it 100%. Don’t allow fear or temporary defeats to stop you, let it empower you. Channel that energy back into the fluidity of your plan, and reassess your process. In the game of poker, business, and life you are faced with tough decisions. Sometimes you can do everything right and still lose. Don’t let this frustrate you, just realize it’s part of the game. Prepare yourself for the possible risks, continue learning, and keep going ALL IN!
SUCCESS. In this context, we are using success to mean achieving your goal. However, success means something different for everyone. As a matter of fact, if you haven’t spend the time before, I highly suggest writing out your goals as well as defining what success means to you. Consider what matters to you most. Keep in mind what makes you happy, where you add the most value, and when you feel significant.
As we live our lives and gain new experiences and information, our perspective and priorities tend to shift and change. The crucial takeaway here is that in order to achieve and sustain success, we need to have a strategy that allows for flexibility to adjust along with those new changes and challenges. Implementing this idea is easier said than done, but by keeping a level head, and remaining focused on the process while continuing to work towards our goals, we will live happier, be more productive, and even more successful than we already are!