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Thursday, March 26, 2015

Success Leads to Success


Well, that seems rather obvious, doesn't it?

Success leads to success.

In the great lottery of life, some fortunate few are born with the world as their oysters. The successes of their forebears almost ensure that these lucky ones will be successful, even before they begin. Yet, some of those who seem to have it all go on to squander their head starts.

Some people start life with even less than the short end of the stick. They have no other option than to work hard and make the most of what they've carved out for themselves. Sometimes those who may never have started with the basics rise to the tops of their fields.

The type of success to which I'm referring is the kind where a person feels a deep, personal satisfaction with achieving a goal. In this case, let's strip away a person's socio-economic background or perceived privilege, or lack thereof.

Every person has dreams and desires, yet not everyone follows these dreams, sometimes because they simply don't know how to articulate what it is they actually want out of life.

As a writer, I'm used to looking at large, nebulous projects like turning story ideas into novels, then breaking down the various components into manageable pieces and tackling each part as I encounter it.

Something that I've discovered: every time I'm successful in this sequence of mastering steps, my sense of achievement spills over into other aspects of my non-writing life.

For example, because I've grown familiar with breaking down large projects into sequences of smaller projects, I've discovered that tackling a rather large lifestyle change for health reasons has been a lot easier than I would have imagined possible.

Instead of looking at the Big Picture, which seemed self-defeating, I simply split the lifestyle change into one hundred little mini-challenges and set an achievable pace of one year. Because I'd already achieved success with my writing projects -- and before that, with my film projects -- I knew that if I focused on smaller milestones such as every ten, and also each quarter mark, I would head for the larger one-hundred challenge goal with ten milestone successes and four quarter marks already in the bag.

If you've been dreaming of writing and perhaps think of a whole novel as too big, perhaps setting a non-writing goal of clearing out your over-stuffed garage will help you see over that mountain. Every time you scale a new height, the view from there helps you see your way clear to that next goal.

Success really does lead to success.    

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