A well-known person recently stated that if you’re going to take advice, only take it from someone who is exactly where you want to be and doing exactly what you hope to become. In other words, only take advice from someone who has already succeeded.
Does that mean that a freshman should refuse the advice of a sophomore simply because that person hasn’t graduated high school yet? Should we decline to listen to a financial accountant about how to become a millionaire because the person only has $650,000 in the bank? Does that mean that Thomas Edison was a loser at his 9,999 attempts to create an electric light bulb and that his advice on the subject of electricity only became valuable after he tried one more time (it took 10,000 attempts).
This post is less about who to take advice from and more about giving advice to our kids about how to become successful.
Our kids have to know that success is not an all or nothing and a person’s worth does not suddenly appear after a certain level of success is reached. What makes people successful is a determined effort to succeed. It’s in this upward struggle that a person will learn, grow, change, and transform into the person they want to be.
I once heard a famous motivational speaker say that he didn’t know that he had succeeded until after ten years of being successful. It just dawned on him one day after a decade of telling others how to be successful that he had finally arrived where he wanted to be.
It’s because he rightly saw success as a process, something to constantly strive to maintain and not simply a designation to reach.
We should remind our kids that success is a process and not an event.