‘Opportunity is missed by most people, because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.’
I saw this quote the other day when I was reading a certain book and I agreed so much with it that I decided to share it here.
I have realized that in life, most opportunity that you’ll meet will not come in what I can call “a finished form” but there will be some work, effort or something that you’ll have to do to get something of value out of it. Is it a job opportunity? You’ll have to go through the necessary procedures to get it and even afterwards you’ll have responsibilities and duties to carry out. Is it a business opportunity? You’ll have to do market surveys, business plans and so many other plans in order to grasp that opportunity. Is it a school / scholarship opportunity? You’ll have to apply, do interviews, write essays and even when selected there starts the long journey of attending classes, presentations and exams.
Just think of any opportunity, there will always be work to be done, even when you meet a new person and there’s a friendship opportunity, there’ll be things to do so that the relationship grows into a friendship and maybe even more than that. Therefore, it is important that we realize that there so many opportunities around us and if we want to seize them, we must be willing to work for it.
The interesting thing is that: most people value more something for which they have worked and tend to undervalue what is given to them freely.
I was reading a book the other by Rod Judkins titled: The Art Of Creative Thinking, and I found a story therein that can really help us understand how vital it is to seize every opportunity that comes our way. I quote:
“The Kellogg Company was transformed into a success by a counterintuitive decision by Will Keith Kellogg. In the late 1920s, Kellogg’s was one of the competitors in the packaged-cereal market. When the Depression struck, the other companies did the predictable thing: they reined in expenses and cut back on advertising. It was the accepted wisdom. In hard times, most firms invest less in research and development. They try to preserve what they have. That was rational. It made sense. Kellogg made an irrational decision: he doubled his advertising budget instead. The Great Depression was just getting started, but he reasoned that people still needed to eat, and the breakfast of choice for most Americans was “flakes and milk.” Kellogg’s accountants and financial advisers were pressuring him to make cuts, but Kellogg saw that he would never have such a huge competitive advantage again—and he was proven right, emerging as the market leader by the end of the Depression. Today, statistics show that companies that continue spending on advertising during recessions do significantly better than those that make big cuts. Despite the evidence, many firms continue to follow their emotions and cut advertising in hard times.”
When Kellogg saw an opportunity despite the fact that it was during a period of depression, he went for it. He wasn’t afraid of the hard work it would take, the risks that were present and against all odds he preserved and in the end it paid off.
Let’s ask ourselves these questions: How many opportunities have we missed because we thought the environment was not favorable? Or because there was just too much risk involved? Because we were waiting for a more convenient time or it just didn’t feel like that was it?
Almost no opportunity will come knocking on your door like pizza delivery, waiting for you to just dig in; and even in that instance, you have to use your own effort to eat the pizza. Meaning the pizza was delivered but it won’t eat itself or magically enter into your body without work being done in the form of using forks and plates to eat, chew and swallow. Don’t forget also that by eating it, you’re giving work to your body to digest it and extract what it needs to keep functioning. That’s a food opportunity that you seized in the form of a pizza.
Even the most normal and routine things in our everyday life require work. So don’t be lazy but get up and work. Work for the future you desire. In my experience, I have found that the most valuable things in life are found in rather uncomfortable places: gold, diamonds and precious stones are found underground, to get petrol, there has to be digging deep into the earth, sometimes even under oceans and so many other examples out there.
Your success depends on your own hard work, so let’s get up, get out and start working. I know it’s not going to easy and it will most likely be a bumpy ride but just believe in yourself, step out, open your eyes and decide to seize every opportunity that presents itself to you. If you’re wondering how to identify it; remember : It’s dressed in overalls and looks like work. Now that you know how to spot it, Don’t miss even a single one.
Here are a few quotes to help you on the way:
‘People become really remarkable when they start thinking that they can do things. When they believe in themselves, they have the first secret of success’
Norman Vincent Peale
‘You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.’
‘I am a great believer in luck and I find that the harder I work, the more luck I have’
‘You’ve got to get up every morning with determination if you’re going to go to bed with satisfaction’
George Horace Lorimer
‘If you have goals and determination, you have nothing. If you have goals and you take actions, you will have anything you want’
Thomas J. Vilord
‘Successful people in this world are those who get up and look for circumstances they want. If you can’t find them, then make them. ‘
George Bernard Shaw