The Relativity of Success

Dear Friends and lovers of anything good, I say a big seasons greetings to each and every one of you where ever you are at this moment. The long-awaited blog entitled, The Relativity of Success, is finally here. My silence for sometime is not intentional. I have been overtaken by events while been guilty of procrastinating and looking for a perfect time. However, I am glad, I finally got the positive enthusiasm and energy to publish today being the last day of 2014. I say to God be the glory. Today’s blog is indeed a unique one because of the timing and the topic itself. This because today being the last day of the year, I want you to know that, you are very successful, if you are alive today reading this blog, that means you are a success. Sounds funny, but that’s the gospel truth. This is because, many people wished they are alive to celebrate today, but its a pity they couldn’t see it. It’s not because we are so smart, strong, beautiful, handsome,rich or righteous, but it’s just because of a particular decision you made, or even a particular association or network around you otherwise you would have joined your ancestors. Alternatively, reading this blog tells me something, you are indeed very successful, because many people would have loved to have access to the internet but they don’t have it. Some of you are reading this blog with your smart phones, iPad, laptop, desktop computers on what have you. Now, let me ask you, are not successful? Yes you are! Not all persons have access to this electronic gadgets. Having said that, I want you to know that Success is indeed relative, it all depends on the angle you are looking at it from.

In other to appreciate this scintillating topic, I will like to define success and ask you a question, what do you think success is? Alternatively, what does success mean to you. Depending on your perception, interpretation and version of success, I will do justice by giving an overview of what success is. Success can be defined as the achievement of something desired, planned, or attempted, due to hard work and decision-making process;The gaining of fame or prosperity;The extent of such gain.
That said, another question I want to pose again is what do you think success is or what does success mean to you? In the society and world in which we live in today, the general and psychological concept is that, for one to say he/she is doing well, he or she must have attained some financial success in terms of material wealth. However, in the ideal world, that shouldn’t be the real definition of being successful. And that leads me to the final question what does success means to you? To some people success is attained when one is financially independent and buoyant. To others when they must have attained a particular level of academic height or qualification; to some when they are married and have been able to give their children some level of academical, spiritual and moral training in addition to seeing them doing well financially, to some, when they have been able to attain their dreams, passion and desires in life. The list is endless, you can as well add yours to it. However, most people don’t seem understand the other coin/side to success, ant that is where this blog comes in. Do you know you can be successful in your health status while not being rich. In fact, to me, that is the highest form of being successful in life because health is wealth! You must be healthy in other for you to be able to attain any level of success. And, that’s why I said, for you to be alive today being the last day of 2014 means you are successful, you were able to take care good care of your health. Also, you can be successful in terms of family. This is because, the family is the greatest asset a person can have on earth. Family can be likened to having God in your life. According to the teaching in the book life, when you have God in your life, you have everything. Same also, one can be likened to be very successful, if the family is a great one due to the values, characteristics and qualities they share. This because, when you must have lost everything in life, don’t lose your family. There is a saying when you lose everything don’t lose hope. Same also, I will say, when you lose everything in life, and your family which is your backbone is still with you, you are on way to coasting home to victory. I have a particular saying whenever the issue, value and potency of family is in issue, and the saying is this, Friend, boyfriend,girlfriend, all have an “end” attached to it, but family ends with “ily” which I literally coin to be “I love You”.

That said, let’s go into the relativity of this concept of success starting from the financial aspect. It’s a fact, one is said to be successful in business when you have evidence to show for it in your balance sheet. Many people liken the evidence of success to material and financial success. Indeed, every person will like to be successful in life,but the question is can you go through the process of being successful? Do you know the secret of success? Do you have the skills of being successful,are you fully equipped with the right information and training? Are you resourceful? DO you have values and what people need? You can never be successful if you are not relevant. In analyzing this financial aspect of success, I implore you to see the thought of Yomi Garnett who is a Radio Talk Show Host and the President of the Global Institute For Human Excellence. When you talk of being successful in life, and someone who understands what success means, you can talk of Yomi Garnnet. He said “THE QUEST FOR MATERIAL AFFLUENCE”
“Your quest for material affluence is a perfectly valid aspiration. However, you will need to come into insightful awareness of the true secret to the acquisition of wealth. Two Angels hover around you. One of them is the Angel of Wisdom, while the other is the Angel of Wealth. They both demand your unwavering attention, uncompromising devotion and unadulterated love. However, in your display of affection, you must be partial to the Angel of Wisdom. You must love her, and pursue her with single-minded focus. When you do this, the Angel of Wealth will become insanely jealous,and she will start to visit more attention upon you. The more you seek the Angel of Wisdom, the more the Angel of Wealth will seek you, following you wherever you go with blind devotion. This is the eternal and secret path to sustainable wealth.”

I concur with this statement in all ramification. You can never attain success by luck, there are plans that go into it. Nothing happens without a reason. For every action one takes in life, there’s a corresponding reaction. In my study of law, I learnt a latin maxim which says, you cannot build something on nothing. It’s just like the saying, there is no smoke without fire. Yomi Garnett, encouraged us to seek the Angel of wisdom first and the Angel of wealth will be insanely jealous that she will then how seek you. Is it not true that the book of life said, My people perish because of lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6). Friends, with wisdom at your disposal, there is no level of successful once can’t attain.

Another concept and relativity of success I will like to share with you is working in your job to sustain oneself and the family. You may have a job, career, skill etc with which you use to earn a living with. Now, the question I have for you is, do you like the job? Would you say you are successful in it? Friends, if you have a job which you are not passionate about, trust me, you can never be successful in it. Also talking about working to earn a living, most people feel if they are not working in a professional industry, they are not successful just because of how the society sees them. Please make no mistake about this, if everybody is a lawyer, doctor, engineer, accountant etc who will be the electrician, bricklayer, plumber, etc. In my experience in USA, most artisan/skill worker earn more than six digits($100k+)annually depending on how long you have been able to put into service. Even some professional workers don’t even make this kind of money, though all varies to how much service you have invested into your work. The irony of this logic is that, most of this skilled people are not so keen on getting formal educational, because according to them it’s not for them and it doesn’t worth it. According to this school of thought, (artisans) they derive satisfaction in what they are doing and they see success by how much you make at the end of the year as opposed to spending 6-10 years acquiring formal education and in some cases this education comes with a big price of loan + interest.

Another fundamental issue worthy to mention here is being skillful and creative. Overtime, with my interaction with friends, I have always opined that, education will give put food on your table, but your skill/gift will give you a living. Stories abound of people who became very successful in life with little or no training, because they were able to discover their talent early in life. Example Michael Jackson, the pop star legend, Beyoncé,Lebron James, Adele, Usher Raymond etc. To this group of people, indeed they have distinguished themselves and achieved a substantial level of success in their career. This group of people, I will say they have indeed attained a substantial level of level of successful both financially, professionally, satisfaction and otherwise in addition to giving back to the society. I say this, because, its is self-evident, they are very skillful, talented and passionate in what they are doing.

Another relativity of success can be linkened to the people whom I will call contributors in the society. These group of people have really distinguished themselves in their different fields of life endeavor and they taught it nice to give back to the society by way of inspiring people to be the best of whatever they want to be, giving back material gift to the deserving and less privileged in the society, mentoring and motivating they younger generation to aspire to be the best in their personal and professional development lives. This is where I think, I personally fit in, in the sense I derive joy in putting smiles on the faces of people I come across, l liking mending broken hearts, I like mentoring. motivating, and inspiring people especially those with heavy heart. Personally, to the extent I am able to put a cheerful smile on the face of anyone I come in contact with, in addition to leaving the person better than I met him/her makes me fulfilled in life.

Please permit me to share with you some nuggets in this relative world of success. For you to acclaim success, its pertinent and imperatively important you understand the components of success.

Decision Process: It’s only a foolish man who sets out on a journey without planing. According to John Wooden, Failing to prepare is preparing to fail. Nobody on earth achieves success without having a road map/plan. You will concede with me, the decisions you make today determines the schedule you keep and the schedule you keep determines the friends, you keep, the friends you keep determines how you will you spend your time, and how you spend your time will determine where your soul will be on the last way. Again, if you make a bad decision both in your personal, professional and business life style and existence, you are definitely hitting the rock. According to Jim Rohn in his book 7 Strategies for Wealth and happiness, he said “If there is one critical ingredient for your successful quest for happiness and happiness its discipline. Discipline is the bridge between thought and accomplishment. It should be noted that, discipline is the foundation upon which all success is built upon. In order for you to make the right decision, its imperative for you to know the right information. There is no gain-saying the fact that, information is power, hence if you are not informed, you are deformed and once you are deformed you can’t perform, because information leads to reformation and transformation. Still on decision, you need wisdom to make the right decision. The two ways to learn wisdom is to learn from your own life and learning from the life of others. This statement testifies to the saying, a wise learns from his mistake, but a wiser man learns from other people’s mistake. According to Anatole Francis ” To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream, not only plan, but also believe”.

Failure: It is pertinent to note that there is no successful person living on the surface of the earth that has not experienced failure. It should be noted that, its is through failure, that the determination of a progressive minded person is tested. Failures shows how passionate and determined one can be in life. Pessimists see failure as end of their life struggle, while the optimistic see failure as success turned inside out. Stories abound of such failures eg. Abraham Lincoln. The idea in failing is not failing, but when you fail or fall down and you refuse to stand up and fight back, that is when failure comes in. Whether we are working to improve our health, wealth, personal and professional enterprise. The difference between triumphant success and bitter failure lies in the degree of commitment one is willingly to commit via studying and applying the right information. It’s worthy to note that, we grow from two things, the joy of wining and the pain of losing. Failures often serve as valuable lessons one has to learn. Albert Hubbard had this to say on failure ” A failure is a man who has blundered, but is not able to cash into the experience”. According to Aristotle ” Excellence is an art won by training and habitation. We do not act rightly because we have the virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence therefore is not an act but a habit”

GOALS: No one has ever attained success without having any set goal in mind mapped out. I don’t believe in luck. What people call luck is what I see as opportunity meeting prepared minds. The major reason for setting goal is to compel you to become the person it takes to achieve them. If you are asked what’s the greatest value in becoming a millionaire? The greatest value in becoming a millionaire is not the money per se, rather it is the skills, knowledge, discipline and leadership qualities which you develop in reaching the elevated status. Provided, you are focused minded to achieve your goal, your ability will always grow to match your dreams. It’s important to note that unless you have goals, its impossible to manage your time effectively.

Time: Whenever you are dealing with success in life, time is like the wife or its twin sister as the case maybe. Time is so precious and fundamental to the a progressive focused minded person. Needless to say that, time is money! If you would like to know the value of a minute ask a passenger who missed his/her train, if you want to the value of an hour ask a person who gets paid by the hour, if you want to know the value of a day, ask a laborer, if you want to know the value of a month, ask a woman in labor,, if you wan to know the value of a year, ask a student who failed an exam and will have to take it in order to graduate form college. On issues of wealth creation, don’t spend major time on minor things and don”t spend major time on minor things. The best use of time and money comes into play when you attach maximum value into it. Due to how precious my time is, I always ask my self, am I making the best use of my time at the moment. Some questions you should be asking yourself is: What are you doing at the moment? What are you listening to? What are you reading? And where are you going? These are some of the questions we should be asking ourselves daily as we climb the road of success.

Three greatest causes of failure of success are : Procrastination, giving excuses and the blame game. The idea of leaving for tomorrow, what you can achieve today, giving excuses as opposed to owning the lapses or what I say taking responsibility for your actions while striving to make ends meet and finally but not the list, apportioning blame instead of fixing the problem is not idealistic and as such hinders success in any endeavor.

Attitude: The greatest asset a person can have in other to achieve success is having the right attitude. I once read a book by Keith Harrell entitled “Attitude is everything. No one achieves success in life without having the right attitude. Attitude is like the lubrication to success. Whether you are at work, church, family, society, sports, market etc having the right attitude gives you an edge above all persons. It is a fact in life, if you want to succeed in life, you need to work harder on yourself than on the job. Your attitude determines in large extent how you will live your life and how far you will go in life. Even employers of labour value and cherish employees with the right attitude. During interviews, they look at the attitude a persons shows in addition to finding out if the person is passionate about the job in addition to having the necessary skills, knowledge and understanding to do the job as expected. A positive attitude is the most priceless possession a person can have. Your attitude should be an indication of where you intend to be in life as opposed to what you have being through and where you intend to be. Knowing yourself and understanding what drives your attitude and emotions is the first step to self-knowledge. Also, take note, its your attitude and not your aptitude that determines your altitude in life. Finally on attitude, its worthy to note that, real wealth is not measured by where you are, but by the spirit that lives within you. Success is indeed relative.

Happiness and Contentment: These two words summaries this article. This is because in order to find the common ground for the relativity of success. It’s important we know without happiness and contentment on earth there will be no joy and satisfaction in whatever one does, whether in marriage, job, material and wealth acquisition etc. There is no successful man/woman regardless of what he/she is doing that is not happy and satisfied with his/her works. That’s why its good for people to always follow their passion in life. Happiness and contempt is never jealous or angry with the success of other persons. Alternatively, one can say, it’s the satisfaction one has and being able to appreciate what God has endowed in each and every one of us that makes one satisfied in addition to having a feeling of contentment of what God has given to us as opposed to wishing you have the gift of other people. Most people fail to realize what they have is far better and more than what they don’t have.

Handwork: This is resultant effect of success if done in the right way. I have never seen any person who dies as a result of hard work, rather the person gains strength and endurance. According to Thomas Edison, ‘If we all did the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves”

Saying No: This is one trait successful people share together. They perfectly know where to draw the curtain. Saying yes, to everything makes one to have the appearance of jack of all and master of none. Taking a clue from one of the distinguishing trait of an entrepreneur, you must know the specific need/solution of what product you are bringing into the market. You must be specific on want you can do and stand for in life. According to Bill Cosby, ” I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everyone” Friends, you can be everything to everybody, whether in relationship, business, Christianity, you must learn to say no and draw the line. That on its own, accords respect to an individual. Even Kenny Rogers said in is track the “Gambler,”, “You must know when to fold them, when to walk away and when to run”. He went on to say, “every gambler knows the secret to surviving is to know what to throw away and what to keep”

Benjamin F. Fairless finally concluded saying The recipe for successful achievement are :1. Choose a carrier you love. 2. Give it the best that is in you,3. Seize opportunities. 4.Be a member of the scale.

I will conclude with this sentence from a friend “The greatest lesson I have learnt from my experience is that to be successful you must have a strong faith and a big vision that drives you. You must have a strong desire to succeed and back that desire with action and self belief. You must have absolute belief in yourself that you have what it takes to be successful and when setbacks or tragedies occur, do not give up; instead see them as opportunities for growth because success thrives on adversity. As the saying goes, “A calm sea does not make a skilled sailor. Nothing worth gaining is gained without difficulty”.

Beloved friends, I know this article is detailed, but at the same time it is not exhaustive of all relevant issues needed to be discussed. However I want you to know that you are very successful due to the choices you made in 2014 for having seen this last day of 2014, . Having said all this, I want to encourage you to stay positive regardless of the vicissitudes of life you have been through and still going through. I don’t know how many times you failed in business, searching for the right one, faced disappointments, academic failures etc I want you to have the attitude of experience, I mean see all the negatives as experience as supposed to seeing them as failures nor matter bad you felt. I hope I have been able to do justice to this article by showcasing the relativity of success and its relativity to other life endeavors. Be positive, be fruitful and don’t forge to share with article, information and knowledge with your friends, because that’s one of the beauty of life. I ask, what’s the value of knowledge if not shared? Let’s live well and succeed friends. I wish you a resounding and blissful 2015 filled with positive accomplishment in Jesus name, l say Amen to that prayer. Cheers….

10 thoughts on “The Relativity of Success

  1. Mr Henry Utazu, thanks for this riveting and challenging piece.Indeed, success is relative, and this is a case in point. Keep up the good work.

    Like

Leave a reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s