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Archive for September, 2009

Taking Inventory

   Most of us like the feel of a new beginning. Some of us wipe the slate clean on January first, making a list of resolutions for the New Year. Some of us get that psychological boost when we do Spring cleaning, inside and out. And others put their personal and spiritual affairs in order in the Fall, with the start of the High Holy Days.

   Author Napoleon Hill was a master at helping people take inventory of themselves. He identified the characteristics shared by successful people and, conversely, those traits that almost always ensure failure. I won’t itemize his lists here, but I will share two important characteristics that help us boil it down.

   The one quality that every successful person exhibits is Persistence. Talk to anyone who appears to have the tiger by the tail; ask them if they ever suffered a defeat. Every last one of them will tell you they failed many times before finding the winning formula. The key is that they picked themselves up, dusted themselves off and tried again.

   One of the most common causes of failure is Procrastination. Anxiety clouds our thinking when we begin a new project or tackle a new resolution. We wait for just the right moment, operating with the belief that timing is the secret to a successful launch. But Hill says the time will never be “just right.” Start where you are and work with the tools you have right now.

   Beat the New Year’s rush. Resolve today to conquer any tendency to procrastinate, and persist until you get it right.

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