After I’ve banged my head on a wall enough times trying to achieve my dreams, I’m tempted to think that I’m just not going about it the right way. I feel like I’m missing the silver bullet or the magic formula that will propel me to success. And then I pick up the phone and talk to my mentors, and they set me straight. My mentors have walked the path to success and they remind me – all the time – that there is no single right way to get to where I want to go. They tell me over and over that there isn’t a single belief system or behavioral pattern or spiritual practice that I must follow to get to where I want to be.
It’s tempting sometimes to go to the self-help section of a bookstore and get 100 books by successful people and try to follow their path. The problem with this approach is that the path successful people write about is their path, not my path. Each one of us has developed a number of personality characteristics, beliefs and values that is unique, different from anyone else in the world. We have to remember that. Because we are all different, each one of us has to approach success and life in a way that is personalized to who we are.
Does that mean that we can’t go buy those 100 self-help books? Nope. It just means that we have to take what we like in those books and leave the rest. I’ve spent years trying to cram myself into various spiritual practices and success programs, even when every fiber of my being was screaming that they were wrong for me! I would follow the directions of my latest guru to the letter, figuring that if the approach worked for my guru, it would work for me. I came out of every one of these experiences less hopeful and more disillusioned than ever. But I also learned a whole lot of useful tips, tricks, techniques and practices that have served me well for years. It wasn’t all a waste of time. I just didn’t know how to “cut and fit” the programs to suit my needs and personality.
As you walk your own path to enlightened wealth, just remember that you are an absolutely unique individual with particular needs. You were given a set of values as a child, but they may not be right for you. As you go searching among various practices and programs for a set of values and beliefs and practices that will work for you, just remember that you don’t have to take everything whole hog. Take the pieces that work for you, strive to understand why they work for you, and integrate them into your life. Don’t smother you uniqueness into a “one size fits all program.” At the same time, don’t let your uniqueness be an excuse for not succeeding – don’t be terminally unique!
Even though we call it a journey to wealth, realize that it’s not a single path with a single set of beliefs. It’s your path, and your path will look very different from anyone else’s path. You can be a devotee of Ghandi, collect stamps, be a vegetarian or live in a primitive hut if it helps you live your dreams. It doesn’t matter if you feel like you have to stand on your head to be successful. Stand on your head if that’s what it takes and never believe anyone who tells you that you won’t succeed by standing on your head. If it works for you then do it! Be forewarned, though, if you become very successful by standing on your head, all kinds of people will come to you wanting to learn how to stand on their heads too!
Here’s to walking our path, whatever the path may be. So long as we’re happy and living our dreams, so be it!