Norton: The island of success
For some of us, an island of success immediately conjures up the idea of living on a tropical paradise somewhere, removed from our worries and obligations, and living without debt or drama. We imagine ourselves on white sandy beaches, warm ocean breezes, enjoying island delicacies and sipping tropical drinks. And for
However, there is another island of success. It’s the island we can place ourselves on as we separate ourselves from the crowd and elevate ourselves from the pack.
In the pursuit of success, it is our ability to see life and opportunities differently and break away from the deafening noise that surrounds us each day. I have had the benefit of speaking with and learning from many wise and successful mentors in my life. Some in my business life, some in my personal life, and some along my spiritual journey. And one common trait among them was that they found time to step away from the crowd to focus on their work, their lives, their families, and their faith.
“The best thinking has been done in solitude” — Thomas Edison
“Without solitude, no great work is possible” — Pablo Picasso
And to underscore those two quotes, here is another saying that I had read recently, “A place of solitude is essential. Otherwise, one cannot think beyond the noise.” The noise is everywhere and sometimes the demands on our lives intense. To rise above the noise and the demands we must find time to be, to think, and to dream. In a world where stress and being stretched too thin drives us to work harder and not smarter, achievers have figured out that creating an island of success comes from their moments of peace and solitude.
So where can we find these islands of success? Some find it on walks along the beach, a hike in the mountains, in a cabin or retreat, or even stopping on a great tree run while skiing to take in a few moments of solitude surrounded by aspens, evergreens, and blankets of untracked snow. Others find it in their commute to work, using the time for reflection and processing. Some make it a conscious habit of waking up earlier than others in their home and finding time each morning to simply be, think, and dream.
We cannot underestimate the power of solitude and peaceful moments when it comes to finding our passion and igniting or creativity. When we think about what Thomas Edison or Pablo Picasso said about solitude, we see where our best thinking and our greatest works are achieved. Our job along the journey toward our own success is to rise above the noise and demands to find our island and build in time for ourselves along the way. This is not selfish or to be considered an act of selfishness as the more time we can spend thinking and doing great works, the more likely it is that the outcome will be of significant benefit to others in our lives personally and professionally. We become difference makers in this world.
So how about you? Aside from the tropical islands we all fantasize about, have you found your peaceful moments to be, think, and dream? And when you do, do you feel your passion and creativity growing even stronger? I would love to hear your story at email@example.com and when we can find our own island of success, it really will be a better than good week.
Michael Norton is the Chief Revenue Officer for Eventus Solutions Group, a strategic consultant, business, and personal coach, and motivational speaker. He writes a weekly motivational column for the Vail Daily.