Success is a Unicorn

Shellby GT 500

I remember Gone in 60 seconds with Nicholas Cage because they call the Shelby GT 500 a Unicorn. An they go a little further saying a Unicorn is something unattainable. This is why I say Success is sometimes a Unicorn.

A Unicorn is a magnificent beast that cannot be caught, unless you have a virgin of course.

In one of his notebooks Leonardo da Vinci wrote:
The unicorn, through its intemperance and not knowing how to control itself, for the love it bears to fair maidens forgets its ferocity and wildness; and laying aside all fear it will go up to a seated damsel and go to sleep in her lap, and thus the hunters take it.
From the Wikipedia on Unicorn

I am not saying achieving success is unlikely, I am so sure I can help you build success that I have changed the name of this blog to Building Success. That said, lets face an uncomfortable truth, success is not likely for everyone in every field of our choosing.

Yes your mamma lied to you. You can’t really do it all.

There are many reasons why people will not achieve success, some of those are circumstantial and there is nothing you can do about it. Think of the Football player who gets badly injured on his first week on the NFL. This is part of life, and thats the reason why success sometimes seems to be a Unicorn.

How can I tell if I am hunting a Unicorn?

Before you start any particular project, endeavor or company, ask yourself the following questions for 3 days on a row without looking at you answers from the day before.

  • What is the worst case scenario for me and this project?
  • Can I endure the worst case scenario?
  • Is my competition better qualified?
  • Can I add real measurable value to this particular endeavor?
  • Am I knowledgeable enough to achieve success on this project?
  • What will be my responsibilities and how will I be accountable for them?
  • How comfortable am I with these responsibilities?
  • Am I willing to pay the price of success in this project?
  • Do I have the skills set needed to perform admirably?
  • If I am not knowledgeable, is it expensive for me to acquire such knowledge?
  • Ho fast can I change, and how willing am I to adapt to a changing landscape?

On the third day, compare you own answers. You may notice some answers become more objective as you think about them. This is a great sign, it means you are actually able to see the forest from the tree.

No one can tell you if you will ever achieve success.

But if you are willing, you have the knowledge –Or can acquire it in terms–, the right mindset and skills, it doesn’t even matter if you have no talent what so ever. You just have to endure, to show up every day and keep doing what you do in the best possible way.

Do you know who Kurt Warner is?

Nowadays, Kurt is a sports broadcaster. He is also a former Arizona Cardinals Quarterback and the only one to have ever won a Superbowl with the team so far. However he was not a star in his first years, but he decided to endure, to pay the price, he wast cut off the Packers training camp and decided not to give up hope. I invite you to read his story and be amazed by it.

Needless to say, if you lack the willpower or the skills, then you are lost and you should sincerely reconsider whether or not this is the right path for you. If you stick to it because is what you know you are going to end up hating what you do, and miserable, and it will totally be your fault.

Do not try to catch a Unicorn, decide to excel at what you can do.

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