Setting Yourself Up For Success

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This is not going to be what you expect but I'll say it anyway. Woody Allen is right: 80% of success is showing up.

As a consultant I fully understand this. I get a mix of projects -- more of low value ones than high value ones -- and I do the same thing to get both projects. I simply show up.

Showing up is consistently positioning yourself in front of the door of opportunity. The day it will open you will not be found wanting. 

You get what you go after. The reason you have a university certificate is you showed up for every exam, whether prepared or not. In fact, not showing up because you weren't prepared was very dangerous. Yet that's the strategy I see a lot of people subscribe to. They only want to show up when they are 100% ready, forgetting that the door opportunity will not remain ajar forever.

It is not the man who is best prepared or most qualified who gets the warm embrace of an opportunity. Rather it is always the man available. The one who showed up when opportunity called. 

Once you identify what you want to be successful at, all you need to do to set yourself up for that success is to show up always. Constantly present yourself for the opportunities you seek. 

In my case, I want to be a professional programmer. All the progress I have made so far are the results of presenting myself for opportunities I seek. I searched for a trainer even though I didn't know where I would find the time for the training class. Result? I got two world class trainers and one of them refused to accept payment. And what did I do to deserve that? Nothing besides showing up. I wanted to become a Microsoft MVP. I presented myself when I was sure they would be nuts to give me the award. And guess what? They gave me award. And already three times now. Every morning, I show up in front of my PC screen to crank out a blog post. There are many days I won't have any idea of what to post until 30 mins to my 8:00am deadline. In the beginning (2013), I was sure one day I would miss a day's post. Now I know better. As long as I show up, I won't miss a day. 

What is it you are hoping to be successful at? My sure tip for you is to keep presenting yourself before the opportunities that will lead to that success. Don't for once think you are not ready or not qualified (except it's a zoo's lion caregiver work). Just keep showing up.


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