What Makes Great People Great

If I find 10,000 ways something won’t work, I haven’t failed. I am not discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward.

Thomas Edison

We all know some great people in our lives. There are hundreds of examples: Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Neil Armstrong, Van Gogh, Gandhi, Maya Angelou, Nelson Mandela and many others. But what makes them so great? Dr. Kimbro, author of the book, ‘What Makes The Great Great’, believes that being great depends on a commitment to making dreams come true. He writes in his book: “All high achievers make choices, not excuses.” Such an apt explanation. We all have a million excuses for why something failed, but only a handful go on to achieve their goals in life despite any number of obstacles.

Are they born great? Most certainly not. Did they have silver spoons growing up? Nope. Did they have their fair share of problems? You bet. So what made them great then? Dedication? Perseverance? Tenacity?

Greatness is to be learned. There are certain crucial elements, which when combined together, enable you to become great.

Hard work:

If you wish to achieve greatness, you should be willing to work your butt off. As Margaret Thatcher puts it beautifully: “I do not know anyone who has got to the top without hard work. That is the recipe. It will not always get you to the top, but should get you pretty near.” There is no substitute to this. The way the protagonist in ‘Shawshank Redemption’ chips away a little bit of wall with his little chisel- it took him a few years, but at the end he did make a hole big enough for himself to escape out from.


Practice does make you perfect

Practice means to perform, over and over again in the face of all obstacles, some act of vision, of faith, of desire. Practice is a means of inviting the perfection desired.

Martha Graham

Practice and you shall get there. We learn things by Practicing.Be it walking, dancing, or even brushing our teeth. We do these things again and again until we become good at them. Great people practice like there’s no tomorrow. They are completely dedicated towards learning their craft and that shows.

Your critics do you the biggest favour:

They fuel you to do better. Every great person has his or her critics, who think the worse about them; doubt their talent. However, not every person critiqued, is necessarily great.

Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.

Winston Churchill

No one likes to be critiqued, but if it enables you to do better, then why not? The key is to absorb things that will do you good and ignore those that won’t.


Selfless service

All great people have one thing in common. They have all been selfless in their service to others. That was their intention all along: to serve others, to help them overcome obstacles. As Martin Luther King Jr said: “Not everybody can be famous but everybody can be great, because greatness is determined by service.”

Be ready to lead

When the time comes, be ready to lead. That is what separates the weak from the strong. Great people are not just about talking. They actually jump in when the need arises.

Leadership is about taking responsibility, not making excuses.”

Mitt Romney

Leadership isn’t only about believing in yourself. It is about making the men you’re leading believe in themselves. It is about having a vision and doing everything to get there. It is about holding your nerve under pressure situations, like Dhoni. You will rarely see him flustered no matter what stage the game is at.

Courtesy:  http://www.mensxp.com


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