When most people start out on a path to success, they imagine it going something like this…
Yet, the reality of success is that you will often encounter challenges and obstacles along the way.
If you are willing to overcome those obstacles, you will achieve the kind of success that most people simply never reach in life.
Likewise, if you are willing to change your approach to something and try something new, you will find that you simply cannot be right about everything in life all the time.
Sometimes, you have to open your mind to other ideas to see the real truth.
Two Important Questions For YouThe Ladder of Success
Almost every man wants to climb up the ladder of his chosen field, so he can declare that his life is a success.
He wants to experience the feeling of being successful and having his dreams come true, but if he is like the majority of guys in this world, he’s not prepared to climb the ladder. He wants success right now, without having to take any more steps.
Too many guys make the mistake of thinking that their rise up the ladder of success should be unrestricted because they “deserve” it.
Some guys may ask questions like, “I’m a good guy and I have good intentions about my success, so why don’t people just see that and help me? Why do they make it hard for me? Why can’t things just work the first time I try them? Why can’t I just get what I want without any effort? Why do I have to try so hard? Why is life and success so challenging?”
Here’s the thing…
Success almost always comes to those who EARN it, not those who DESERVE it and simple get it for not doing anything.
Yes, some people in this world are born into a rich family and have success handed to them. Some guys are very good looking and find it easy to attract women. Some guys are naturally better at sports than others.
Yet, the majority of people in this world have to do what it takes to EARN their success. They have to climb the ladder of success one step at a time, rather than expecting to take the express elevator because they are more deserving of success than other people.
If you really want something in this life, you have to believe that you can achieve it, but you also have to understand that your rise to the top of the ladder won’t always be care free.
Some guys have a naive, idealistic of success and expect that no-one will get in their way, they won’t encounter any challenging situations and it will all pretty much be “smooth sailing” from one step to the next.
Unfortunately, success rarely plays out that way. On your way to the top of the ladder, you will often have to take two steps up, then one back down. With persistence, you will get there and you will be more successful than 99% of people who just aren’t willing to keep going.
Keep Going and You Will Succeed
“Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.” Michael Jordan, NBA superstar
If you speak to men who have achieved amazing success in their chosen path in life, they’ll tell you that there are always going to be obstacles along the way to success.
They’ll also tell you that many of the things they discovered while overcoming those obstacles were some of the best lessons they’ve ever learned about success and life in general.
When it comes to success, it is the moments when you are feeling most challenged that you will either give up or learn, adapt, grow and become a stronger, wiser and a more successful man than you ever thought possible.
When you reach that point, you will be living your life from a position of power that most people will never experience because they simply give up and assume that they can’t make it to the top, or even close to the top.
If at First You Don’t Succeed…
Too many men try something once or twice and if they aren’t successful, they give up and berate themselves for their failure.
Falling into a world of pity and weakness, men like this refuse to step back, re-think the problem and come at it from another direction or with a different approach. These men either lack the understanding that with more effort and perseverance they will eventually achieve success, or they assume that their initial approach was correct and everyone else must be wrong.
A classic example of this is when a guy uses the “nice guy” approach on women and keeps getting rejected. In his mind, he is doing the right thing and if he gets rejected enough times, he may begin to assume that everyone is crazy or that women must want bad boys.
Yet, there is a much more simple explanation why being too nice to a woman often results in rejection…
Lessons From Successful Men
The most successful men don’t give up at the first sign of failure. They rethink their approach or get advice from experts and then try again.
Here are some examples:
1. Legendary moviemaker, Steven Spielberg, was rejected by his “dream college,” the University of Southern California several times. Not wanting to give up on what he desired, he went to another school and later created movies that have made film history.
2. When he was a child, Thomas Edison’s teachers advised his parents that he was “stupid” and wouldn’t amount to anything. Years later, although he tried over a thousand times to come up with a working light bulb, he eventually succeeded and brought us all out of the dark.
3. Although it may have taken Edison over a thousand attempts to create the light bulb, it took British inventor, Sir James Dyson, 15 years, his life savings and 5,127 attempts to come up with a revolutionary new vacuum cleaner system that brought him outstanding success.
He refused to give up and his efforts have literally cleaned up our lives and saved our wives and girlfriends from countless hours of sweeping and dusting.
4. “Colonel” Harland David Sanders brought his “Kentucky fried chicken” recipe to more than a thousand restaurants that rejected it saying that their patrons wouldn’t like it. Now he has thousands of KFC restaurants worldwide where people line up for his “finger-lickin’ good” chicken.
5. It took three of his automobile companies going bankrupt (imagine just experiencing ONE company going bankrupt or you going personally bankrupt) and iron determination before Henry Ford’s car designs became one of the most successful in the world.
6. He was fired from his first newspaper writing job because his editor didn’t think that Walt Disney had any imagination or good ideas. (I think Mickey Mouse, dozens of other characters and billions of people worldwide who have enjoyed his movies, cartoons, books theme parks, toys and more would probably disagree with his first employer’s evaluation!)
7. When he didn’t speak until after age 4 and was considered a “mentally handicapped” student, there seemed little hope for Albert Einstein. Although he may have been a “slow starter,” he later went on to win the prestigious Nobel prize for physics.
8. When he applied for an engineering job at Toyota, Soichiro Honda was rejected. To help pay his bills, he started to make motorcycles which eventually brought him his initial success. That enterprise then led him to starting his own automotive company and ultimately becoming a billionaire.
Those are just a few of 1,000s of examples of famous men who failed to succeed early in life, but went on to be a huge success later in life.
I’ve used famous people as examples because most readers will recognize the names or things they achieved. I’m NOT saying that the type of success these men achieved is what every man should aim for (i.e. business success or success in Hollywood for example), but I am saying that if you want to be successful, don’t think that it will happen in a simple, straight line.
Be prepared to drive over the hills, hang on and stick with it when going through rough terrain and use your determination, desire and intelligence to cruise on to ultimate victory.
It’s fortunate for all of us that the men listed above (who could have easily considered themselves a failure and simply given up like most other men do) were confident, determined and dedicated enough to their dreams to push through to success.
They went on to become valuable contributors to humanity because for them, failure was NOT an option. Where most others would have given up, they were strong enough to keep going until they reached the top of the ladder. They didn’t stop climbing because life forced them to take one or even two steps back. They pushed on.
Through courage, hard work and belief in themselves and their abilities these men went on to achieve phenomenal success in life.
How about you? Will you give up on your dreams or will you be brave, wise and strong enough to push through to the success that is waiting for you?
“Wanting something is not enough. You must hunger for it. Your motivation must be absolutely compelling in order to overcome the obstacles that will invariably come your way.” Les Brown, Musician
Do You Have the Right Attitude For Success to Naturally Happen to You?
If you have the right attitude and the right information, the path to success will naturally unfold before you. Of course, there will be bumps in the road along the way, but if you have the courage and will to continue, the success that you desire and dream of will begin to emerge before your eyes.
Here’s an example of what I mean…
Not too long ago, I watched a documentary that interviewed 25 (mostly American) character actors. I recognized them all from TV shows, commercials, movies and so forth, but if their name wasn’t up on screen while being interviewed, I wouldn’t have known any of their names.
These actors were often cast in “character” roles as a lawyer, friend of the leading man, doctor, cop, salesman and so forth. However, despite not being a well-known megastar in the movie scene, in the highly-competitive world of acting, for the most part, these men would be considered successful.
By getting those secondary roles, they had their “foot in the door” and at that point in an actor’s career, he either will “take his foot out of the door” and give up trying to become a leading man or he will use his strength to continually push until he gets the door fully open and walks right into the Hall of Fame, so to speak.
The men who reach the top of their game are those who never stop learning, believing and trying. It’s not enough to just believe that you can do it, you also have to learn how to do it better and then try again and again until you get it right.
Three of the actors in the documentary caught my attention because of their uniquely different attitudes and how that applied to their level of success.
One of the actors was often cast in the “tough guy” role because of his looks and size. The acting work he was usually hired for was as a cop, a criminal, a firefighter, construction worker and so forth.
Despite his rising success, his bad attitude towards auditions eventually became his downfall. He hated auditions because he saw himself as a “big shot” actor and looked at auditions as something that newer actors should have to do…but not him.
After a couple of decades of acting in his typecast roles, he thought that producers should just look at his previous work and decide if they wanted him for a certain role.
If they asked him to audition, he would do it if he wanted the part badly enough, but he resented having to go through the audition process and it showed in his attitude before and after he did his scene. Producers weren’t impressed by his attitude and gradually, his agent began getting less and less calls for him until the phone just stopped ringing altogether.
This is a classic case of a guy getting half-way up a ladder and thinking, “Well, I’ve gotten this far. Where is the lift or elevator? I’m too special to have to keep climbing up this stupid ladder! I’m a VIP…the rest of this should be all taken care of for me!” and while he was living in that fantasy land, other men were climbing right past him on their way to bigger and better success.
The same applies to success with women. Often, a guy will learn how to approach women and then begin approaching women, get a few good responses and maybe even collect a few phone numbers and go out on a few dates.
Yet, when those dates don’t turn into kissing, sex or a relationship, he will stop, half-way up the ladder, thinking, “Why am I not at the top of the ladder yet?”
He stopped climbing!
You have to keep going. You can’t get half way to success and expect that the rest will just unfold naturally without any effort. It would be nice if life worked that way, but it doesn’t. You have to push on to victory by continuing to learn, believe and try. Eventually, you will break through to a level of success that most guys never reach in their entire lifetime.
Another actor in the documentary had the look of a “professional” and he often was cast as a lawyer, a doctor, a banker or some other role that required a man who looked good in a suit or who was believable as an authoritative character.
What impressed me about him was that he was wise enough to enjoy the audition process and fully embrace the path of life that he had chosen. His thinking was that even if he didn’t get the role, for those few minutes during the audition, the part was his.
He would “get into character” and embrace the role as best as he could and enjoy the process. Not surprisingly, he often was cast in whatever role he auditioned for because he had the confidence and joy of being that “character” (if only for a short time).
As a result of his approach to auditioning, he was requested often by film and TV executives if they thought he might possibly be right for the part.
They wanted to audition someone who was willing to embrace their film or TV idea as well as the character he was auditioning for, not some arrogant guy who thinks that everyone should bow at his feet because he’s been trying to get somewhere in the acting business for years.
As for the second actor who had a great attitude toward auditions, even if producers couldn’t cast him for that particular part (for a variety of reasons such as scheduling conflicts, he appeared in a similar part recently, etc.), the next time they had a possible opportunity for him, they would call his agent to set up an audition for him or simply ask if he was available for a part they knew he’d be right for.
The second actor with a great attitude is a classic example of how success will unfold for you if you use the right approach and have the right attitude.
Eventually the door just has to open for you. It has to.
When the door opens and you keep climbing, you eventually reach the top of the ladder and achieve the type of success you only ever used to dream about. It’s inevitable as long as you keep learning, believing and trying.
The third actor was someone who I’d watched many times before on TV and in small movie roles. In the interview, he admitted that he still gets nervous before an audition for a role.
In an attempt to calm his nerves, he said that he would learn his lines (if they were available to him), do some research on the character and get used to talking and acting like the character. No matter what he did though, he always felt nervous.
Although he still doesn’t understand how to overcome his anxiety and nerves, his “be prepared” approach has allowed him to keep pushing on and on, to the point where he has been cast in about 80% of the roles he’s tried out for, which is a very high success rate in the acting industry.
At the end of the documentary, there was a note saying that the second and third actor (who I described above) had recently been cast as “series regulars” for new shows that were starting the following season.
When I checked up about the first actor with the bad attitude about auditions, he had only had a couple of very small, unimportant parts in some B-grade movies and low-budget TV show pilots. For the second and third actors, much of their success has been due to their positive and productive attitude towards what they are trying to achieve.
The first actor stopped half-way up the ladder and expected everyone to make the rest of the climb easier for him, while the other two have continued on as best as they can in pursuit of their dreams and now are seeing more success.
How about you?
Are you allowing the path of success to unfold naturally before you because of your great attitude, or have you stopped climbing the ladder and feel like the world should just lift you up to the top because you’re a good guy?
Do you expect women to suddenly make it easy for you and allow you to climb the ladder without you having to do a thing, or are you wiling to learn what you need to learn to be more successful?
A Personal Story from Me
When I was in my first year of high school, the teachers notified us students that there would be a long-distance running competition at the school.
The winner would get a trophy and a prize and the top five runners from each year level would get to go to a forest retreat for a week-long training camp that would improve our long-distance running abilities in preparation for inter-school competitions.
On the day of the running competition at my school, I told my classmates that I was going to win and most of them laughed at me because one of the bullies shouted out, “Ha ha, Bacon thinks he’s gonna win. What a loser!”
Anyway, so I won. Not only did I win, but I also came first out of the entire school beating all of the older kids in the higher year levels.
That year, I competed against other schools and even with all of the training and hard work I put in, the best I could achieve was fifth place in one event and seventh in another. Despite my obvious talent with long-distance running, I didn’t know that I was lacking a key component for success – the right information.
I had absolutely NO techniques to use to help me run faster. I was just running.
My school teachers were not experts at the sport of long distance running and simply told us to “run” and “try your best” when at the training camp. They didn’t teach us ANY techniques that would help us improve, but simply woke us up early each morning to run for an hour, then another 30 minutes during the afternoon and 30 more at night.
Later in life, when I had discovered that “the right information” is so crucial to success, I met a successful runner (he’d competed in national and world championships) and asked him what type of techniques he used for improving his running game.
As he sat there reeling off technique after technique, I was astounded, shocked and disappointed. I said to him, “If only I’d known this stuff back at school, I would have won at least some of the major races. The guys from the elite private schools only beat me by a few meters, which is nothing in a long-distance race.”
After our chat, I tested out his techniques and instantly added at least twice as much “horsepower” to my running. I felt like a “running machine” when I did what he recommended compared to the inefficient, clunky style that I was using, which was consuming more energy that necessary.
His techniques allowed me to make more efficient running strides with less effort and I felt like I was running in “fast forward.” When I experienced that, I just knew for sure that I could have won those races if I’d just been given the right advice and shown those techniques.
The moral of the story?
You can have all the talent in the world, but if you don’t have good technique, you won’t be successful unless you get incredibly lucky or fluke your success. The way to make success easy is to get the right information and great techniques that are used by successful people.
Just look at what Thomas Edison had to go through to create the light bulb (thousands of failed attempts because he was doing it wrong), or think about the 150+ times I had to approach women before I eventually worked out what I now teach here at The Modern Man.
If someone had just given Edison the ANSWER, he could have made light bulbs and the other great inventions he thought of much faster and easier.
Likewise, if someone had just given me the advice I needed about approaching and attracting women, I wouldn’t have had to face so many cold, harsh rejections and bitter, empty feelings as I headed home alone each time without even so much as a phone number.
Back when I didn’t know how to attract women, they were cold and uninterested when I approached. They didn’t help and allow me to climb the ladder by teaching my what I didn’t know. They just rejected me and let me fail.
I was on my own.
Even though I was trying hard to succeed, I was doing it WRONG. I didn’t know the correct way to attract women because no-one was there to help me and tell me what I was doing right and what I was doing wrong.