Last night, I celebrated a milestone birthday for my Grandmother, taking her to a fine dining establishment in Nottingham called Harts. It\’s a nice restaurant based in the Park – about a million miles away from where I grew up and certainly not a location I would have ever expected to find myself when younger, let being able to pick up the tab for the whole table.
It made me think about all the people I\’ve had the opportunity to learn from over the last 25 years – those who have taken the effort to teach me by example and share their experience and wisdom with me, but also those who have taught me the opposite of how I wanted to act. I have found both types of experience equally invaluable and both contributed to me sitting in that restaurant.
A lot of what I know and the way I act has been developed as an inperfect art rather thanan exact science. Having a curious mind, an open heart and a good dose of determination and positivity have all helped, but the exact measure and combination required for success has remained elusive, despite my attempts to get the measures right. So much of what I\’ve achieved has been trial-and-error; anyone that knows me well will be able to tell you I talk about my failings as often as I talk about my successes. A good dose of what I\’ve achieved has almost felt circumstancial, and it\’s here that I find the power of preparation to be essential.
To be prepared means to be ready to be creative, to withstand dissapointment, to take calculated risks, develop connections and relationships, seek out inspiration and ultimately to commit time and hard work in pursuit of a goal; even when you\’re not certain that the next step is the right one.
I see success in life as a mindset, rather than a location or set of possessions. I once read that the happiest man in the world was the one who was satisfied with what he has – I believe that to be true. To be satisfied with one\’s accomplishments is important, to be comfortable with uncertainty and setbacks is important. To understand that nothing is guaranteed but that the most important things in life are your health, friends and family – I believe these things to be coming close to success.
I\’ve been faced with plenty of opportunities to give up pushing towards where I am today. I nearly have, more than once. I\’m certain that I\’ll be faced with plenty more reasons to give up pushing towards where I want to get. I\’m absolutely determined to continue to build flexibility, mental resilience and the ability to help those around me; together, we will ensure each others success.