At some point in time, most of us find ourselves reflecting on where we are in life. For some it’s the start of a new year, while for others it might be the anniversary of a special occasion or even some defining moment in life. It might be a thought provoking exercise or a simple assessment and evaluation, where you ask yourself, how am I doing? Am I living up to my potential? What have I accomplished?
Today, most unexpectedly, I found myself doing an inventory of sorts. Why, I’m not sure. Maybe it’s because it’s my birthday, (all gifts accepted) or maybe something else with a deeper meaning.
This morning, I awoke to the sounds of singing birds outside my window. At first, I was somewhat annoyed as it was about an hour before I usually wake up. I thought about getting up but it was still dark, a little bit chilly, and besides the coffee wouldn’t be ready. (I have a coffee pot with an alarm on it) I thought about going back to sleep but after listening to the birds for a few minutes, I knew it would be a futile effort.
As I lay there listening to the serenading birds, I thought about a recent conversation where I was asked, “what is my greatest accomplishment?” Being that it was in the context of a business conversation, I assumed that he was looking for an answer related to a sales transaction I closed or something to that effect. I quickly rambled off the details of a mega-deal I closed in my past and we moved on to the next set of questions.
But today, laying there in the darkness with nothing but my thoughts (and the constant chirping of the morning birds), I found myself taking an inventory of all that I have accomplished in my life. Not just from a professional standpoint either. Although I like to think that I have had more than my fair share of successes and major accomplishments in the business world. I also thought about my marriage, my three wonderful children, all my friendships and relationship (both personal and professional), all the places I’ve been, all I’ve done in the community, and yes my individual and personal accomplishments.
I can proudly proclaim, in the words of singer /songwriter, Joe Walsh, “Life’s been good to me so far”.
Has it always been smooth sailing? Absolutely not! God knows I’ve had my share of epic failures. But I learned from those failures and come out better for it.
Do I consider myself lucky? You bet. Although, to me, luck is where preparation, hard work, and opportunity collide.
Am I fortunate? That’s an unequivocal yes. I’ve been very fortunate to be surrounded with and accompanied by some really great people. Any major accomplishment and the success that comes with it, is never truly a “one-man show”. It takes teamwork and more often than not, it’s the people behind the scenes that make the difference.
But as I consider all the things that I’ve accomplished, all the good fortune I’ve enjoyed, I know that I would never be where I am today without an “Attitude of Gratitude” and an unyielding faith. Faith in the many people in my life, faith in a higher power, and faith in knowing that the best is yet to come.
Next time someone asks me, “what’s my greatest accomplishment” I won’t give them some half hearted lame answer; I’ll simply tell them that while I have had some success and some significant accomplishments, but, the best is yet to come.
How about you? Have you accomplished all you have set out to accomplish? Have you reached your full potential?
Feel free to share your thoughts.