Website DIVISIONS (Over 600 articles to help you to grow in every facet of your life)
Written by Jimmie Burroughs Email to a friend
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Success comes in many different ways. Sometimes it is quite by accident; just a matter of being in the right place at the right time. Sometimes it is because of the right associations; born in the right family, or having the right associates. Sometimes it is because of exceptional gifts. Most of the time, however, success is the result of personal development in conjunction with knowledge. Here are 3 ways to enhance your chances of success through personal development:
King Solomon is considered to be the wisest man who ever lived; he wrote that “Humility and the fear of the LORD bring wealth and honor and life” (Proverbs 22:4). The fear of the Lord means to respect God for whom he is. Solomon also said that “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall” (Proverb 16:18). Pride and haughtiness are the opposite of humility. The definition of haughtiness is being scornfully and condescendingly proud.
Humility is defined as having a modest opinion or estimate of one’s own importance, rank, etc. Almost without exception the successful people I’ve known have been humble. And I don’t mean a humility that is forced or just an act, but rather the humility of truly feeling that humans deserve to be treated equally. It would be amusing at how some in high society go about as if they should receive special treatment because of their social or economic standing if it was not so disgusting. No one is a god; we all experience some of the same emotions; we all face some of the same tragic events in life; we all are just human beings.
Why, you might ask, does humility matter as far as success? Before I answer that question let’s first consider what success is: Success is measured in different ways. Mostly it is measured by the amount of wealth a person has, or by how much money a person earns, or by how well someone is known. While those may be a legitimate measuring stick, there are also other considerations which include a contribution to society, enjoying good health and long life, and raising children who contribute to society rather than being a liability.
The last mentioned above are the qualities most desired when it comes to success and not money and fame, which both can be present without really bringing success in full measure. The examples are numerous of people who have wealth and fame but are undesirables, and who contribute little or nothing to the world they live in. I don’t think we could call them successful merely because of their wealth and fame.
Back to the question: Why does humility matter as far as success? Humility has several affects on a person’s life. First, it removes the stress of trying to impress others. One’s own importance isn’t a consideration. I noticed that quality in former President George W. Bush today as I watched an hour long televised interview with him. He plays down his importance and shifts interest to those things which have lasting value to mankind. Humility gives way to dedicating one’s self to having a purpose in life that lends to the welfare of others instead serving self. It gives purpose to life that goes far beyond accumulating material wealth. It takes away the stress of a self focused life.
John D. Rockefeller Sr. was one of the richest men in the world in his day, but the stress and the drive required to amass such a fortune had robbed him of his health. (Stress is a leading cause of disease and premature death; humility, on the other hand, promotes a healthy, long life.) Mr. Rockefeller lived primarily on goat’s milk and was actually dying. One day he was talking to a neighbor over the fence, and his neighbor said something that would change Rockefeller’s life forever. It was concerning helping others. Mr. Rockefeller changed his entire focus of life and began to search for ways to use his great wealth to serve others. Instead of dying as was expected, he returned to good health, and lived to be 97 years of age, and went down in history as one of the greatest philanthropists of all time.
Rockefeller spent the last 40 years of his life in retirement. His fortune was mainly used to create the modern systematic approach of targeted philanthropy. He was able to do this through the creation of foundations that had a major effect on medicine, education, and scientific research.
His foundations pioneered the development of medical research, and were instrumental in the eradication of hookworm and yellow fever. He is also the founder of both the University of Chicago and Rockefeller University. He was a devoted Northern Baptist and supported many church-based institutions throughout his life. Rockefeller adhered to total abstinence from alcohol and tobacco throughout his life.
One of the greatest strengths of humility is focusing on the needs of others rather than your own. The reason it enhances success is the unwritten rule that “what goes out from us to others comes back again except multiplied.”
Rude and arrogant people are generally disliked by everyone, even though they often do manage to become wealthy, and sometimes at the expense of others. However, they never have the honor that is bestowed on those who care for and help others. They are miserable human beings living for themselves, and caring little what happens to anyone else.
Politeness on the other hand is a way of showing others that you do care for them and respect them. A business man or woman who genuinely cares for others will not take advantage of them, but will try always to provide the best and most helpful service possible. The opposite of this is seen today at some doctor’s offices and veterinarian clinics where it is common practice to do an up-sale to patients and pet owners of services, tests and medication that isn’t necessary just in order to increase revenue. We see that not only in doctor’s offices and animal clinics, but all around us. It is an example of showing little concern for others. Politeness is simply caring for the welfare of others and expressing it by the way we treat them and respect them.
Being polite is just as easy as being rude. It is being careful to do the little things that most are unwilling to do. It is a desire to want to serve others rather than to use them or to be served by them. It is the in-defensive attitude of not returning rudeness for rudeness. It always develops a good reputation for any person or business and brings a return in terms of success.
Courage is going where others fear to tread. A survey was conducted of people who had reached retirement. One of the questions was: If you had it to do over, what would you change about your life? One of the frequent answers to the question was to do the things they were fearful of which would have given them a much fuller life.
Taking calculated risks is one of the most important attributes of successful people. Courage does not mean fearlessness or carelessness. It means that a person is willing to move ahead even if there is fear, carefully plotting their course through life, and taking the necessary risks. When they see an opportunity, they are willing to weigh the risks and take the step. Sometimes they misjudge and fail, but it never thwarts their courage. They get right back up and try again. It isn’t uncommon for extremely successful people to have made and lost several fortunes.
One of my favorite characters of the Bible is the Apostle Paul. The statement that best summed up his philosophy in life was, “For me to live is Christ and for me to die is gain.” That was his spiritual stand. In other words Paul was saying that what mattered most was not whether he lived or died, but it was his purpose, Jesus Christ, that mattered and that the attributes of Jesus were visible in Paul’s life.
We can use that same philosophy not only for our spiritual stand, but also in all of life. It is like not concerning ourselves with our personal life, success, wellbeing or longevity, but spending our effort and energy toward accomplishing that purpose which is dearest to our heart. It may be more than just one purpose; it may include being the best husband or wife; the best parent; the best provider for your family; the best friend etc.
I think that humility, politeness and courage have marked my own life, perhaps not to the highest degree, but they certainly have been an important part of my life; I must add, not because of myself, but because of God who has been my partner since age 13. He has been the strength of my life. God would also like to live in your life. You can have the power of the universe residing within you, which can make possible those things which seem to be far beyond your grasp. Read this article about having a relationship with God and give it some serious thought.
May God Bless you my friend,
I would like to hear your views: Please leave a comment below!
About the author: When I started on the Internet a few years go, I knew absolutely nothing about it, nor anything about a computer. I bought a book to learn the basics about the computer and asked a school teacher friend to teach me to copy and paste. I wanted to write about some of the things I had experienced and learned in my life, especially about personal development, that I thought would be helpful to others; so I ordered some online courses to teach me how to set up a website. I learned that a blog website was the most popular, so that is what I set up. Now, there are over 250 articles on this website alone and I have four other sites. If you are interested in setting up your own blog, I will give you the 53 page informational eBook that I wrote with all the step by step information that I learned to set up this website. It cost me hundreds to learn it but its yours free. There have been over 12,000 copies given away. I hope you get your copy while it is still available. Just put your correct email and first name into the form at the top right hand side of this page.
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