"Excellence is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction, skillful execution and the vision to see obstacles as opportunities."
The above anonymous quote was displayed prominently in an office, where, oddly enough, it seemed to attract very little attention. In any case, it has made enough of an impression to invite a look at these words of wisdom and see where these words may apply.
When embarking on a road trip, unless a bout of aimless wandering around the country is the intent, it is essential to have a destination in mind and a map. Most people in the world are living someone else’s agenda. Stated differently, most people are on a path of aimless wandering – much like a traveler without specific destination or map. It would be most valuable to look at different areas or aspects of life and ask “what is the intention here?” Consider the areas of family, business, spiritual practice, financial means, retirement, education, self development, health, and social interaction. Most people, by their own admission, are not living fully actualized lives and full potential. One main cause is a lack of clear and focused intention and direction.
Without clear direction, “sincere effort” is impossible. Perhaps effort becomes sincere when clear intention is established. Most people merely do an adequate job of trying whatever it is they’re doing because they are relatively un-inspired by the task. Sincere effort stems from high intention. It flows naturally. Look at the areas of life where one is just “hanging out” or “clocking time.” This indicates insincere effort – an opportunity to create a more focused and clear intention!
As humans we tend to see in purely linear “cause and effect” terms. “When given lemons, make lemonade” is certainly simplistic, but most people who are successful have had to become adept at taking some perceived challenge and using it as an opportunity for benefit, value and profit. This comes from introspection, the counsel of open minded and visionary people (of which there are few).
Each of these steps, when applied, provides opportunity, challenge, impact and benefit. With these steps in mind, it is a matter of will to trade in mediocrity for excellence!