You continue to grow and along the way someone reflects that part you had cast aside, placed elsewhere. You think, “Maybe?” You think, “Maybe they have THE answer.” So you dress like that girl in high school. You read that book your boyfriend said was fantastic. You admire a business professional and say, “That’s something I want.” And, you delight in the approval received through imitation. You allow that something free, and yet, you still feel on the shelf. You recite of affirmations to un-tether your Self, yet they seem incomplete.
- “Authenticity is the key to success.” Oh, by the way, you need to develop an Elmer Gantry[i] hook to get others to notice your authenticity.
- ·“Do what you love and the money will follow.” Oh, and by the way, you may have to take a job at something else until the money shows up. But continue to do what you love.
- “Passion, persistence and determination make for the achievement of goals.” Oh, and be certain they are the goals you “really” want.
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Who was the first self-help guru with THE answer? Dale Carnegie? Napolean Hill? Does it go back father than that? Benjamin Franklin? Farther? Jesus? The Buddah? Someone with THE answer has been with us throughout the ages. Yet THE answer still eludes us. Why? It is the conundrum.
Should I continue to write, am I simply another Gantry with THE answer? Or am I one of the searching souls simply sharing thoughts in search of MY answer?
My answer continually unfolds. Today with the instant, insatiable connection that technology brings, information is the physical manifestation of the abundance that is available to all of us. Limitless. Yet does this information hold knowledge of THE Answer for us, individually?
I began working for myself about three years ago. That is actually an inaccurate statement in that in these three years I have come to realize that I have always worked for myself. My “take-home” compensation was after deductions for marketing support, technology support, operational support etc. etc. To digress into this observation is another story for another writing.
As I began “working for myself,” the Internet provided endless answers to success. The 10 Steps To Starting A Business. The ABC’s Of Marketing. How To Move From $0 To $100K In Six-Months. With all this information readily available – and so much free – how could I not succeed?
I am succeeding. Yet in very different ways from the ABC’s and 123’s that if I had followed in detail, as prescribed, to the letter (again the sub-text), I too, supposedly, would be as financially rich as the creator of the program, the tool, the support.
There is the rub. In the world of Google that abounds with the “LOOK AT ME!. I am the living proof, my way leads to success,” a world that infers becoming successful necessitate identifying something you have that others want; yet success lies in finding YOUR answer to that something that brings you success, how do I become successful if I set myself up with having THE answer when the truth is YOUR answer is what will make you successful? Did that make any sense?!
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One day you sit and wonder, “Why?” Why other people seem so free and you do not. You so want to feel that freedom. You imitated. It worked for awhile and only so far. Then somewhere inside says, “Dare.” So you dare, dare to show that which is uniquely you, that part of you that has been on the shelf. The learning through imitation was just that – learning and imitation – and it held you back from all that is you. You are the only one who knows that which is You, and only you can set your Self free.
Yes, ABC’s, 123’s, a coach, therapist, and teachers are instrumental in continuing the journey. However, it is awakening to the awareness their answers were examples of what comes when you stop looking outside to others for the way to your success, and look to who you are and what you are meant to do in this world that holds YOUR answer.
Oh, that does not mean there is no practice, no imitation along the way. Picasso imitated George Braque early in his Cubism period. The author of “Sound and the Fury,” “Absalom, Absalom! ” William Falkner was greatly influenced by Proust and Joyce. When they dared to create from within them Self, then the clichés were fulfilled.
Claude Monet was never wealthy by the standards of his day. Yet he did what he loved, the money followed to support him and we see his immortality for it.
Steven Jobs was passionate, persistent, determined, and we are witness to his goals that succeed in changing civilization forever. Do we remember he was fired from Apple once?
Hemmingway’s authenticity is embodied in “A Farewell to Arms,” “For Whom the Bell Tolls.” We forever feel his presence in his writing, though he struggled throughout his live against crippling emotional shocks and scars, .
So where does one go to find their answers? Now if I had that answer and shared it, would I not be Elmer Gantry? See my conundrum?
I coach. I am passionate for the work I have found because my success lies in assisting others in finding their answers.
MY answer will ever continue to unfold, as will yours. It is in this duality of following another and braving your own unexplored trails that you encounter your Self, success, and fulfillment in whatever that definition is . . . for YOU.
[i]“Elmer Gantry” is a 1960 drama film about a con man and a female evangelist selling religion to small town America, based on the 1927 novel of the same name by Sinclair Lewis. Elmer Gantry (Burt Lancaster) is a hard-drinking, fast-talking traveling salesman with a charismatic personality.