that achieves something great—is the most ecstatic thing life has to offer. And, in stark contrast to the zeitgeist of the day, it is the result of individual choice, effort, and perseverance. It is everyone’s birthright. It is also a snowball of momentum that rolls up like-minded people.
Success, in my experience, is rarely captured in after action reviews, post mortems, or business case studies. Execution through difficulty is often a messy affair—a very messy affair. But, a year or so later, the feat is described as ‘flawless execution’ or a ‘well planned strategy’ and, what always occurs, people who stood on the sidelines clamor to take credit.
I’ll save a discussion of the debacle of credit-takers rising to responsible positions for another post. Now, I want to cover the raw experience of what it takes.
Steven Pressfield describes masterfully in his books: The War of Art, Turning Pro, and Do the Work the best metaphor for the 'how' of any success. He highlights that whenever an individual or group strives for something great in the creative field of business or art the counterforce of Resistance rears its head. Pressfield covers how we are Knights and Resistance is a dragon that we must fight with all our power to get the pearl of great price. The closer we get to the finish line the stronger the resistance opposes our efforts and the mightier we must fight it.
I exhort those reading this: identifiy that dream you've had for yourself; that dream that engenders butterflies and fear; unsheath your sword, steel your nerve, and fight that dragon. It is your birthright.
I’ve slayed dragons and wiped the sweat from my brow. I’ve been part of a team that slew dragons. If we have the
fortitude, it’s in the capacity of each of us, and there’s nothing else that counts as much or tastes as sweet in all the world!