Moving Beyond the Rat Race

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As a business coach, I interact with shop owners every day. I have discovered that most, at one time were motivated by a desire to move beyond the rat race. The rat race is an unhealthy competition that is created by the misguided concept that there is a limited supply of resources in the universe and that to succeed; you must do it at the expense of your competitor. I am reminded of the story of 2 competing shop owners that were in a daily competition with each other for sales and customers.

One night one of the shop owners named Joe had an encounter with a Magical Jeanie. The Jeanie informed him that he would be teaching him a lesson by granting any request he had with the condition being that his competitor would get double of whatever he asked for. If he asked for wealth, his competitor would get double the wealth. After much thought, Joe made the request to be struck blind in ONE eye! This story is a humorous illustration of the unhealthy competition that takes place in the rat race. There is one thing that I have discovered about the rat race: Even if I win, at the end of the day, I am still a RAT! So the question that I pose is how do you move beyond the rat race? I will give you three points to consider that will allow you to move and grow to the next level.

The first point to consider is destiny. When you have a focus on destiny your focus shifts from your competition to your calling. One of my favorite TV shows growing up was Alfred Hitchcock Presents. Alfred Hitchcock had a unique way of opening every episode. He would show a picture of his silhouette and he would then walk into it. His silhouette was shaped specifically for him and him alone. Our destiny is like that silhouette. It is made specifically for us and all we need to do is walk into it. It eliminates the need for unhealthy competition in that it is not necessary to compete for something that is already made for us. Our Destiny is our life plan. When deciding on a business plan, our life plan must be the first priority.

The second point to consider if you plan to move beyond the rat race is discipline. It takes discipline to move into your destiny. I watched an interview with the actor Will Smith where he was communicating success principles and he used the analogy of the perfect brick wall. He mentioned that if you were looking to build the perfect brick wall, your direct focus would need to be on the individual brick and laying it as perfect and complete as possible. The focus on the individual brick would lead to the perfect wall. This is the discipline necessary to move into your destiny. Focus on doing the right things and working one brick at a time takes away from focusing on a competitor.

The third and final point to consider is desire. Desire is what motivates your discipline and allows you to walk into your destiny. I will share with you the story that I saw online of the success guru that will emphasize this point. A young man who wanted to be successful and achieve his destiny encountered a success guru. He asked the Guru what he would need to do to be successful. The Guru instructed the young man to meet him at the beach the next day. The next day to the surprise of the young man, the Guru was standing in the water and summonsing him to meet him. The young man went knee deep into the water only to have the Guru instruct him to come closer.

He got waist deep and again was told to come further. Finally when the young man got neck deep the Guru held his head down in the water as if he were attempting to drown him. After much struggle, the Guru let him up and they went to the shore. The Guru asked the young man what he wanted to do during the time that his head was in the water. The young man replied that he wanted to breathe. The Guru then communicated to him the following lesson: “To achieve your destiny and to be successful, the same level of desire that you had to breathe is the same level of desire that you need to succeed.”

If you focus on destiny, discipline, and desire, you will be able move beyond the rat race.

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