Secrets of successful people (Pt 2)

Posted: 16 June, 2012 in inspiration, motivation, Staying positive, writing
Tags: , , , , ,

Never underestimate the value of a beautiful sunrise.

Another common trait in successful people is that they know their value and they know they’re valuable.

I have been in a few jobs where I walked away thinking I was worth nothing because I wasn’t valued in that role.  Successful people know that just because they or their opinions aren’t valued doesn’t mean they themselves are without value.  They know they have something to give and they give all they can.

Every success story revolves around a product or service that had value to someone and the person behind it working on getting that to people, regardless of setbacks or opposition.  This is hard to do if you see yourself, or your product, as worthless.

Let’s face it – there will always be people telling you that you can’t do something and some of them will even list some pretty decent reasons why this is so.  But if you are confident in the value of your product (and yourself) you can overcome these arguments.  Even if you are starting with nothing in the way of cash or assets, knowing that you still have something of value to give can help you succeed.  I’ve read about this so many times – people starting with nothing and still succeeding – and these stories always inspire me to keep going:

  • Australian entrepreneur Dick Smith started his million-dollar empire with just over $600;
  • Robin Chase started the successful car-sharing company Zipcar and GoLoco.org (a carpooling company) with only $78 in the bank;
  • The creators of Guitar Hero were about $2 million in debt by the time they launched their product (their company later sold for $100million);
  • James Dyson, developer of the Dyson vacuum cleaner, owed around $4 million by the time he sold his product but was able to pay it back within five months of that first sale.

How much faith must these people have had in themselves that they continued with their plans even when things seemed so financially dire?  I can’t even imagine being $2 million in debt.

As a writer, I’m in one of those fortunate positions where my only start-up expenses are pen and paper.  Maybe a computer. What I have, that I attach value to, are the words that I put down on that paper.  Not everyone is going to value those words, and some have tried very hard this year to get me to give it up and return to the stability of a 9-to-5 existence.  But I no longer listen to others’ evaluation of me.  I am the one who determines my worth.

Again I think of all those authors whose books were rejected countless times before finding a publisher:

  • Gone with the Wind – rejected 25 times;
  • Jonathan Livinston Seagull – rejected 40 times;
  • George Orwell’s Animal Farm;

Even Dr Seuss was rejected at first for being “too different”.  Today we can appreciate that his being different is what makes his books so wonderful. The words and stories of these authors were not appreciated in the beginning, but when they found that publisher who saw the value in what they had written, it was like striking gold. These authors had found someone who valued their work as much as they themselves did.

Today, it’s enough for me to know that I have something worthwhile to say and I’ve invested in myself so that I have the chance to say it.

Let’s just hope that, one day, my investment pays off.

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