Significance in life is all about overcoming obstacles.
Here’s why: The sizes of your obstacles are in direct proportion to the sizes of your objectives. Set big goals and you’ll face some huge challenges; attempt nothing significant and little will stand in your way.
Here is one simple suggestion for overcoming the obstacles that try to keep you from achieving your goals: take one step forward. No big leap, no jump to the top, no blind swan dive over the cliff; just one step forward. I give this advice for three reasons.
First of all because one step is all you can ever take at a time. When I decided to get some post-graduate education I had a wife, three children, a full-time job, and no money for tuition. So I took one class – that’s all – just one class. And a few years later I had earned my Master’s Degree.
The second reason I suggest you take one step forward is because in many cases that one step will cause your obstacle to flee like a scared cat. Many of the obstacles you see in front of you appear much larger than they actually are. Face them, step into them, confront them with even the smallest step forward and you will notice they are not the imposing monsters you once thought.
The third reason a step forward is what you need to take is that the accumulation of those small steps will grant you victory over time. Your determination will break down resistances and your persistence will power you through problems.
But do you know the biggest obstacle you will face each day? It is not the mountain in the path before you; it is the monster of fear inside you. You are the biggest obstacle you face. There will always be more reasons to quit than persevere, to forfeit than fight or halt rather than take another step forward.
A friend of mine climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa. He told me, “The closer we got to the top the more difficult it became. We were short of air, exhausted from the climb, but so close to the summit. During the last few yards to the top all we thought about was putting one foot in front of the other.”
And that, my friend, is what I’m suggesting you do in the presence of the obstacles that stand before you: put one foot in front of the other, take one step forward.
History celebrates those who persevere but disregards those who give up. But you’re something special. You were made to overcome, you were created to persevere; you were born to significance.
- You Can Solve Any Problem
- From Scrooge to Saint