I spent years juggling three passions—my company, making art, and teaching leadership—waiting for something external to show which I should devote myself to. I was doing above average in each, but wanted to excel.
The sign never came. Having said “You have to say no to a lot of good things to have a great life” many times, I decided to live by it. I chose to focus on leadership and let go of the company and the art.
Suddenly the signs I had hoped to happen happened. I started getting leadership job offers, connections, clients, revenue, and so on. Why did it happen after I chose? Couldn’t the signs have come before, and made deciding easier?
I’ve used the following quote a lot recently
“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.”
― William Hutchison Murray
It’s remarkably accurate, in my experience.
Why committing makes luck seem to happen
Everyone has passions—dreams they want to make happen. They also have fears and vulnerabilities that hold them back from acting on their passions.
When you commit, you commit to facing and overcoming those fears and vulnerabilities. People who have given up on their dreams would rather help you achieve yours than go through life never making any dreams happen. So they come out of the woodwork to help.
Like the quote says, I recommend committing to a few of your passions. Make luck happen for yourself.
Learn to make Meaningful Connections
with a simple, effective exercise from my book, Leadership Step by Step.
- Step by step instructions
- Video examples of me and Marshall Goldsmith
- An excerpt from my book