The next obstacle to success is when you believe that you can’t catch a break, and that you don’t have any luck.

Luck certainly helps, and one of my favorite quotes comes from Italian actress Sophia Loren: “Everyone should get lucky in their careers at least once and preferably early on.”

When you listen to successful people, you learn that luck is when opportunity meets preparation. That means that you have to do what it takes to get where you want to go. Ultimately, your success is entirely based upon being ready when that opportunity you wanted knocks on your door. When Sophia Loren met the great Italian producer Carlo Ponti, she was prepared to become the great actress that we have seen in many movies. That she ended up marrying Carlo and was with him in a wonderful relationship until his death was a streak of sheer luck. Or was it? Perhaps it was fate?

Another example is Abraham Lincoln who was defeated many times in congress before he became president. Was he lucky, or was he prepared?

You might bring up social disadvantage as an exceptionally difficult obstacle to overcome. Read a few biographies. Many great and powerful people of our times and of the past had to overcome a lot of adversity. Be the next one!

There are great many excuses as to why “something” does not happen, be it a career, a relationship, happiness, fulfillment. The way you were raised, your mother was mean, you dad was never home. The truth is, as spiritual teacher Marianne Williamson, so nicely puts it, “We all had wires crossed sometime in our past.” Sorry to break it to you, you are no different – we ALL have these issues.

This brings me to one of the major obstacles that stands in the way of having it all. It is what I call your conditioning. We are all conditioned by our upbringing, our childhood, and we have been shaped by our environment. Even poor and uneducated families can create positive successful kids and vice versa, there can be a lot of educated people who can create morons and losers, says Dr. Nancy Irwin. We all have the choice to be the best we can be and make the most of the hand we have been dealt or not. It is never too late.

You look at the neighborhood you grew up in and see what the average achievement is. You then believe if you can do a little better than the average person around you – you do really well in comparison – so why go for more? It’s pretty good where you are. If others get laid off but you can hold on to your job, you are doing pretty well, right? If your mom and dad have minimum-wage jobs, but you finish college with an undergraduate degree, you’ve already achieved more. You feel pretty good that you got this far but don’t want to push yourself to go further. Conditioning can always be changed. You have to determine where you want to be.

Tell me about where you began in life, and where you are now – was there something you knew you had to change in order to make it? Let me know about your path, your obstacles. Your experiences benefit all of us. I’d love to share them with others, and thanks so much for sharing with me!


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