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Greatness Won't Find You; You Have to Go After It

Just knowing what you want will not take you to greatness. You’ve got to take yourself there.

Walter Russell, a noted artist, sculptor and author, once remarked. “I believe that mediocrity is self-inflicted and that genius is self bestowed.” He might have used the word “greatness” instead of “genius,” but I would amend his statement even further. To say that mediocrity is self-inflicted is to imply that you have to do something to yourself to become mediocre. It’s been my experience that mediocrity does not result from something you do. It results from all the things you don’t do.

My life began to turn around when I discovered that you don’t get to greatness by just taking things as they come. You get there by deciding what you want to do, then actually doing it. You may wake up in the morning knowing exactly what you want and exactly what you have to do to get it. But unless you’re willing to get out of bed and do it, you’ll never be anything better than mediocre. You’ll be like the guy I’ll call Johnny. His mother was having trouble getting him out of bed.

“C’mon Johnny,” she called, “It’s time to get up and go to school!”

“I don’t want to go to school,” said Johnny.

“But you’ve got to go to school,” said his mother.

“Give me one good reason why I should get up and go to school,” demanded the son.

“I’ll give you two,” she said. “Number one, you’re 47 years old. And number two, you’re the principal. Now get up and get to school.”

It’s time to leave mediocrity and go for greatness!

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