The Secret of Success – The Long, Straight Road

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A man is headed north to reunite with his long-lost family.  He knows of only one route to arrive at his destination; a long, solitary road.  He sets off one dewy morning full of resolve, pacing himself and stopping to smell the roses along the way.  Though he faces daily adversity, he remains faithful to his purpose.  Though he sees many lovely gardens and palaces, he remains determined to reach his goal.  Though he hears rumors of a quicker road through the hills, he stays true to his plans.


Whatever your life’s road is, you’re bound to face some detours along the way.  Nothing ever quite goes according to plan.  If you want to push on, you’ll have to learn to roll with the punches.  Perseverance separates the successful from the unsuccessful.  When something doesn’t work out the way you hoped it would, saddle up again and keep riding.  Kick the concept of “giving up” out of your mind.  Instead, seamlessly change directions when you have to, and march forward down your road with purpose.


Besides perseverance, you’ll need plenty of focus to follow your road toward success.  Life will throw many distractions your way.  Some of these can be totally ignored.  Some you’ll have to handle with care and thoughtfulness.  Either way, don’t lose sight of your destination.  Devote regular time to reaching your goals.  Focus on improving your skills and your connections.  Concentrate on building your networks and your capabilities.


At times, you may be offered chances to take the easy way out.  Look closely when you encounter these opportunities.  Remember, if it looks to good to be true, it often is.  Consider the examples of your successful predecessors and inspect them carefully.  Did they get lucky with shortcuts, or did they realize their accomplishments the traditional way with grit, diligence, and resolve?  What appears to be a shortcut home may lead you right into the woods.

Arriving Early and New Destinations

Sometimes success is staring you right in the face and you don’t even realize it.  You might find yourself looking forward and seeing that you’ve reached the end of your road.  If you’ve reached your goals, don’t let your sense of purpose waver.  Keep focusing on improvement, and maintain and nurture your business.  Instead of being complacent, map out some uncharted territory and march forward toward a new destination.  Your continued resolve will offer you continued success.

There is No Secret

There is no magic pill to swallow to become successful.  In fact, you define your own version of success.  Maybe success to you is a well-balanced life that includes business, family, friends, and adventure.  By acting purposefully, you’ll begin to create the path you’ll be compelled to follow.

Stay true to your beliefs; remain focused on your goals, and work diligently to achieve them.  The secret of success will unveil itself to you.  You’ll see that the answer was right in front of you the whole time.  Your success is a mirror image of your hard work.

Matthew Toren

Matthew Toren is a serial entrepreneur, mentor, investor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com. He is co-author, with his brother Adam, of Kidpreneurs.org, BizWarriors.com and Small Business, BIG Vision: Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right (Wiley).

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