Strength is a loaded and multifaceted word. There is physical strength, the ability to undertake tasking physical activities with ease or that other people wouldn’t be able too. There is mental strength which allows a person to mentally persevere under the most taxing cognitive tasks. One of the most revered types of strengths though, is emotional strength because this is the type of strength that allows you to push through pain, adversity and, in some cases, inability. Is it enough to be strong though? Does this guarantee you success?
Just one tool for the job
Strength will keep you going when all other sources are exhausted, but that doesn’t mean that it will take you all the way to your goal. Much like a runner that trains months in advance for a marathon or event, his/her strength is built up through a consistent and strong work ethic. They must regiment their meals, down-time and even family life to achieve those goals. A construction worker needs a hammer to build a home, but would be heavily restricted in his task if it was the only tool in his belt.
When to use it
Adherence to a goal can also be considered as strength, but when that goal becomes a losing fight, you’re most likely damaging yourself pursuing said goal. Think about an athlete that injures themselves. They can continue playing that one game, or step off the pitch, recover and continue the season. On the opposite side of the coin though, if the athlete’s strength is used to push through the pain of the injury, it will probably damage him/her even more resulting in them being forced to leave the season, or even worse the sport. Don’t allow your strength to become stubbornness, again use it as a tool and be prepared to put it away if you can’t use it.
There are unforeseen factors
You can be highly organized and set on your goals and aspirations, but as the saying goes: “If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans”. What I’m saying here is don’t give up for the fear of unforeseen circumstances, but be mentally prepared for if your goals don’t work out. It will soften the blow, creating less damage and allow you to recover quicker. Let’s look at the other side again, as the Roman philosopher Seneca said: “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity”, and opportunity is a set of circumstances that makes it possible to do something. Let’s take a real world example: during the dot com boom of the 90s anyone that had graduated with a degree in computer sciences, programming or engineering was a shoe in for a job. Some of those people went on to create empires of the tech world (most noteworthy: EBay and Amazon). If they came ten years before or later they might not have had the unbridled success they enjoy today.
The Mind is King
What do I mean with this sweeping, yet cryptic declaration? That any asset or tool is useless if it is not used in combination with a critical mind. You must be able to assess, modify and be fluid to be successful. Netflix is a great example of this compared to Blockbuster. Back when Netflix started they would send their subscribers DVDs in the mail and the consumers would send it back when they finished. Later on they added a streaming video service, which they separated from the company for a little, but reintegrated it when it wasn’t performing well. Later on they added company-produced content (which has also been awarded multiple times) while Blockbuster stuck to its format and eventually went out of business. Adaptability and critical thinking saved Netflix.
Are there any other keys to success that you would like to add to our list? Then let us know in the comment section below.