- Posted on Jul 21, 2010
It's easy to be positive when everything in life is going great. The hard part is staying positive when life kicks you down and knocks you around.
It's even harder when we see so many people around us and on television who are enjoying great success. As a society we celebrate the rich, successful and famous and too often focus on the picture of success rather than the journey it took to create it.
It's as if we see only a picture of someone enjoying the best moment of their life while the video of the struggle and pain it took to get to that moment sits in the closet. We don't hear about the obstacles and adversities people, organizations and businesses had to encounter to create their success.
The fact is no one goes through life untested. If you study history and business you will find that every great leader and team had to overcome adversity and challenges to define themselves and their success.
Apple and Steve Jobs are all the buzz right now but let’s remember that Steve Jobs was once down and out, fired from his job and Apple was left for dead. Mark Ruffalo, one of my favorite actors, struggled for years and faced countless auditions and rejections before becoming a movie star. As for me, I can attest that I was rejected by almost every publisher before finally getting published. I have faced countless obstacles, rejections, naysayers and energy vampires on my journey. Everyone does. I have learned that with so many people telling us we can't do it we have to be positive and believe we can. We have to have faith and trust in a bigger plan for our life.
The concept of the "overnight success" is a myth. Get rich quick schemes don't work. Life is a test and a deciding factor of whether we pass or fail is the answer to the following question "Are you going to stay positive in the face of your doubts, fears and challenges?"
Jennifer Hudson, from the movie Dream Girls, said in an article that positive thinking was essential to her success. Mortgage and real estate companies are encouraging their employees to stay positive during this challenging market. Every week I receive emails from people who have received promotions because they have stayed positive. And history is defined by people who overcame challenges and obstacles to change the world.
Staying positive is not about putting on a fake smile or believing you can do it all yourself. Rather it's about being optimistic and living with hope and having faith. The measure of our success will not be determined by how we act during the great times in our life but rather by how we think and respond to the challenges of our most difficult moments.
Jon Gordon is a speaker, consultant and author of several books including the recently released The No Complaining Rule: Positive Ways to Deal with Negativity at Work