I am asked every now and again by journalists or others what is the secret of success, or something similar. My initial response is always enormously unsatisfactory to the questioner.
“It’s not a secret.”
I know it’s unsatisfactory from the look of confusion on his face. I go on to explain as clearly as possible what the secret to success is.
“You set a high goal, and you work really hard towards it.”
The look of confusion is gone, but it’s not replaced by one of satisfaction. After all, if you’re looking for a secret, nobody wants to hear about hard work. A secret is supposed to be instead of hard work.
However, the most recent time the question was asked of me, prompted me to consider it a little more deeply. Upon reflection I may have been too simplistic in my response, or possibly even wrong.
Goals are important, and goal oriented hard work is a given, but the first component of success is vision. Not in the sense of a metaphysical experience, although that can undoubtedly help, but in the sense of the ability to see something that doesn’t exist yet. The common feature of all successful (loosely defined) people I’ve studied is that they have an overarching vision; an extremely broad, yet incredibly detailed vision.
The secret is vision. Once you have a vision, goals make themselves and every action provides simple and unequivocal feedback… You’re either closer to Oz or not.
I’m not sure what look that answer will get me from a journalist though.