There will always be a reason why we cannot accomplish something. Some thing, or being, is standing in our way. Some limiting belief or factor in our lives is beating us down. For every goal we have we can always find a thousand reasons why we cannot achieve it. Then we watch someone who actually does. We witness that person who obtains the goal they set out to achieve and then we come up with the excuses as to why they were able to do what we could not.
Work ethic is one of the two things I mentioned in when it comes to achieving your 2021 resolutions (read about the other here). We can and must work as hard as possible to reach the goals we have set for ourselves. The amount of work required to even have the opportunity to be successful is so great that it is a huge barrier to entry for many. The funny thing is you can work extremely hard, do 90% of what is required to be successful and still walk away with nothing.
As Nick Shaw mentioned on my podcast, you could write 90% of the code for a software application and you wouldn’t have 90% of a working program, you would have no program. Do 90% of the work to develop a vaccine and you don’t go down in the history books as the person who almost invented the vaccine. You just don’t go down in the history books at all. What we frequently fail to talk about is the difference between the person who goes 100% of the way toward their goal and the person who does not. For good reason. It doesn’t matter what the difference is.
All that matters is the result. The individual who accomplished their goal, who took the objective, is the individual who made it happen. They found a way to win. Regardless of all outside circumstances. Regardless of everyone telling them they could not. Regardless of everything that got in their way. They managed to take the objective and prepare for the next fight. This is the difference between winners and losers. Winners make it happen and get over the goal line or reach the top of the mountain.
This is not to exclude your ability to chalk a loss up as a win in certain categories. There are times in life when we set absurd and audacious goals that we fail to meet. Yet we find ourselves shooting for the moon, missing, and remaining with the stars. It’s good to find the positive in those situations, re-assess the goals we set in the future and move forward.
Nine-tenths of tactics are certain, and taught in books: but
the irrational tenth is like the kingfisher flashing across the
pool and that is the test of generals. It can only be ensured by
instinct, sharpened by thought practicing the stroke so often
that at the crisis it is as natural as a reflex.
John McCarthy is a Father, Son, Husband and former Marine Infantry Officer. He serves his local community and just wants to push people to be better humans. Check out the Tough Talk Podcast and other writings on this website to learn more.