Greatness is a Choice

I study successful people. When I was in high school in 2009, I wrote President Obama’s speech word for word at the dining hall while everybody else was watching. It was awkward. At that time, all I knew was that I wanted to be successful. It did not matter what the other kids thought. I did not know exactly what I wanted to do but it made sense to just draw inspiration from someone who had made it.

Over the years, no matter how hard life has been to me; I have always looked up to the final goal .Success. I now have a rough idea of what I want to do and the shape I want my future to take but it has taken so long for me to actually relate to the struggle that every dreamer has gone through to achieve their dream.

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When Michael Jordan talks about rising up early to go for practice because he knew he was not the best, I can relate. When he says that he’s missed the game winning shot 26 times, I can relate. When he talks about failing your way to success, I totally relate.

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When Marie Curie, in a field dominated by men, after many failed experiments, finally earned her Nobel Prize in Physics and Chemistry, I could relate. When Elizabeth Holmes founded Theranos in 2004 at the age of 20, I could relate. When Colonel Sanders attempted suicide at the age of 65, later founded Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) and became a billionaire at 80, I could relate.

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When J.K. Rowling talks about being rejected by 12 publishers, I can relate.When she says she was so excited when she was coming up with ideas to include in ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’,I definitely relate.

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When Lady Gaga, Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates talk about dropping out of school, I can relate. When Bill Gates put up a video that described Microsoft as the Future,I absolutely related even though I saw it years later.When Lady Gaga said a person’s career is the only thing that would never wake up and leave, I was in full agreement.

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When Oprah Winfrey and Condoleezza Rice decided not to get married,I could relate.When Condi attributed her excellence to sports, I related big time.When Oprah asked us to find our purpose,I nodded my head in agreement.When she said that we should only compete with ourselves,I was there in full armor.

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When Barbara Corcoran turned a 10,000 USD loan into a multi-million dollar franchise, I could relate.When she said an entrepreneur fakes it till they make it,I used what I had to get where I wanted to be.When David Rudisha and Tyler Perry talk about working hard at something you love,I can relate.

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When Jay Z and Beyoncé talked about being taken for granted at the beginning because ‘young peopledo not know anything’, I could relate.When they said, later, the same record labels presented a deal, I could totally relate. When Walt Disney said everyone thought he was crazy for thinking anybody would watch animations, I could relate. When Ruth Handler, the creator of Barbie,was mocked for thinking a doll could look like an adult,I could relate.

Did you know that Mackintosh, the one our moms used to stop us from peeing on the bed is actually someone’s real name? Talk about branding.

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When I saw a picture of the garages where Facebook,Apple,Google and Amazon started, I could relate.When Ed Sheeran,at the 58th Grammys said ‘Thinking Out Loud’ was written on his couch,I could relate.

When he said,

“If you would have told my 11 year old self that I would have received an award from Stevie Wonder,I would be shocked.’

I could relate.

Listen:

Find something you love doing. Aim at being the best in that area. Your role model has a role model. You will be one of the greatest at it, if not the greatest. Until you do that, until people call you crazy or refuse to support you, you will forever think Illuminati is real. Chase your dream and drop people along the way if you have to.

I am great at motivation. It took time but I now own it.

Go out there and be great!

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