Before you begin to influence others, it is very important to know you strengths and weaknesses. Your greatest enemy is often the person you see when you stare into a mirror. By being aware of your own strengths and weaknesses, you have the foundation which can allow you to reach the heights of power. When you are aware of what you can and cannot do, you are less likely to overextend yourself.
One factor that separates successful people from those who are unsuccessful is that successful people have a deep understanding of themselves. They tend to be highly introspective, and they spend a great deal of time studying their own strengths and weaknesses. As Sun Tzu so famously said, "if you know your enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the results of a hundred battles."
For example, a bird will not fly higher than it needs to. It will not exert more energy than is necessary to capture its prey. If you watch predators such as lions or bears, after they pursue prey for a certain period of time, if they are not able to kill the prey then they will simply stop chasing it. The reason for this is because the predator does not want to risk injury, or tire itself out. You too can learn a lot by using nature as an inspiration. Animals have a keen sense of awareness when it comes to what they can and cannot do.
One step towards becoming successful is to be aware of this within yourself. To become successful in business or the corporate world, you need to know what you are skilled at. Broadly speaking, most of us are either left brain or right brain. We are either highly analytical and technical, or we are overly artistic. Then there are also people who use both sides of brain equally.
The Role of the Left and Right Brain in Success
People who are able to use both sides of their brain equally are known as polymaths. One notable example of a historical person that was a polymath is Leonardo Da Vinci. However, such individuals are rare. The first thing you will want to do is determine which side of your brain you use most often. Are you the type of person who has a knack for numbers? Do you find solving math problems fun and easy, or you enjoy working with mechanical objects? Or, perhaps you are the type of person who enjoys creating art, or you are a big fan of literature. No matter what you are skilled at, there is a way to make lots of money doing it.
The people who become very successful tend to be those who maximize their talents. They take the time to find out what they are good at, and once they understand their skill-set, they go into careers they enjoy which make maximum use of their skills. When you go into a field that you love, and it is one that makes perfect use of your natural skill-set, you will have a tendency to become highly successful. However, to truly be successful, you must do more than simply love what you do. You must also be obsessed with it.
How Obsession is a Key to Success
History shows that those who are obsessed with reaching a goal tend to achieve it. It is irrelevant whether or not the goal is good or bad in the eyes of society. Having an obsession with something tends to gradually pull your towards achieving what you want. Lyndon B. Johnson was a man who was absolutely obsessed with becoming the president of the United States. While virtually everything was against him, he was determined to achieve this goal. Johnson was known for spending long hours working on political campaigns, and in fact, he worked so hard on one campaign that he had to be hospitalized after winning the election.
Nikola Tesla was an inventor who was obsessed with revolutionizing the world with alternating current. Both Tesla and Johnson achieved their goals. Lyndon B. Johnson became president of the United States, and Nikola Tesla became the father of modern AC electricity. But here is the question. Why is it that these two men became successful, while the average man and woman does not? Is it because they have some innate ability? Is it because they are just lucky? The answer is that both men were obsessed with reaching their respective goals, and they knew their strengths and weaknesses. This is what drove them, this is the reason why they existed.
If you wish to become successful, you to must become obsessed with achieving your goals. When you wake up in the morning, it must be the first thing on your mind. When you go to bed at night, it should be the last thing you think about. But being obsessed does you no good if you are not aware of your weaknesses and strengths. However, if you are keenly aware of what you can and cannot do, you will succeed.