It occurred to me today that, when all is said and done, people are measured one of two ways:
Most are judged by their relationships
A few are judged by their results.
Living an extraordinary life has a price that most people are either unable or unwilling to pay. Typical people are held to be successful or failures based on who their friends, acquaintances, and peers are – where they fit into the social pecking order. Are they liked? Do they “fit in?” Make waves, stand out so much that you make others feel bad about their mediocrity, or challenge the status quo, and you will lose some folks you thought were friends, narrow your band of acquaintances, and draw the fire of most people who consider themselves your peers. In fact, you may even scare your boss.
On the other hand, the people who truly matter in life will start to notice you, too. Achievers and winners like to surround themselves with other winners and achievers. People with a quest for adventure find ordinary people stifling. People who have earned their own self-confidence can sense a lack of it in others…including the fakers…like a dog senses fear. Most can also tell when they encounter someone who is truly comfortable with who they are and aren’t afraid to be judged on their merits.
In the end, the choice is yours. You can be judged by your ability to blend into a crowd, or you can be judged based on your ability to out-perform one. It isn’t about talent. Hard work will overcome a deficiency there. It isn’t about luck. Perseverance makes her own luck. Winners need a little of all three to be successful, but that is how you control the game. You do the right thing all the time and you try to put yourself in the right places. Then, when you find yourself there at the right time, you’ll be doing the right thing. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is when magic happens to people – when they are in the right place at the right time doing the right thing. The only one you can always control is what you are doing.
But you will always have critics. It comes with the territory.