“It really seems (at least if you read popular media) that who you know and whether you get ‘picked’ are the two keys to success. Luck. The thing about luck is this: we’re already lucky. We’re insanely lucky that we weren’t born during the Black Plague or in a country with no freedom. We’re lucky that we’ve got access to highly leveraged tools and terrific opportunities. If we set that luck aside, though, something interesting shows up. Delete the outliers – the people who are hit by a bus or win the lottery, the people who luck out in a big way – and we’re left with everyone else. And for everyone else, effort is directly related to success. Not all the time, but as much as you would expect. Smarter, harder-working, better-informed, and better-liked people do better than other people, most of the time.” ~ Seth Godin, Whatcha Gonna Do With That Duck?
“Today, working hard is about taking apparent risk. Not a crazy risk like betting the entire company on an untested product. No, an apparent risk: something that the competition (and your coworkers) believe is unsafe but that you realize is far more conservative than sticking with the status quo. Richard Branson doesn’t work more hours than you do. Neither does Steve Ballmer or Carly Fiorina. Robyn Waters, the woman who revolutionized what Target sells – and helped the company trounce Kmart – probably worked fewer hours than you do in an average week. None of the people who are racking up amazing success stories and creating cool stuff are doing it just by working more hours than you are. And I hate to say it, but they’re not smarter than you, either. They’re succeeding by doing hard work.” ~ Seth Godin, Whatcha Gonna Do With That Duck?
“The only thing that I see that is distinctly different about me is I’m not afraid to die on a treadmill. I will not be outworked. Period. You might have more talent than me, you might be smarter than me, you might be sexier than me; you might be all of those things – you got it on me in nine categories. But if we get on the treadmill together, there’s two things: You’re getting off first, or I’m gonna die. It’s really that simple, right? … You’re not going to outwork me.” ~ Will Smith
“It is going to be tough if you look for the easy way out because very rarely is there an easy way out. There is nothing that replaces hard work.” ~ Arnold Schwarzenegger
“Life doesn’t reward the naturally clever or strong but those who can learn to fight and work hard and never quit. ~ Bear Grylls
“What you do in practice is going to determine your level of success. I used to tell my players, ‘You have to give 100 percent every day. Whatever you don’t give, you can’t make up for tomorrow. If you give only 75 percent today, you can’t give 125 percent tomorrow to make up for it.‘” ~ John Wooden
“Time lost is time lost. It’s gone forever. Some people tell themselves that they will work twice as hard tomorrow to make up for what they did not do today. People should always do their best. If they work twice as hard tomorrow, then they should have also worked twice as hard today. That would have been their best.” ~ John Wooden
“If you imagine less, less will be what you undoubtedly deserve. Do what you love, and don’t stop until you get what you love. Work as hard as you can, imagine immensities, don’t compromise, and don’t waste time. Start now. Not 20 years from now, not two weeks from now. Now.” ~ Debbie Millman
“Whatever your life’s work is, do it well. A man should do his job so well that the living, the dead, and the unborn could do it no better.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.