Reposted from Psychology Today
1. Don’t Think Your Success Is A Matter of Luck
Lesson: Prepare your mind, and when a lucky opportunity comes, take advantage of it. Have the courage to pursue your independent ideas. You must be honest with yourself.
2. Plant Many Small Seeds From Which A Mighty Oak Tree Can Grow
Lesson: Always remember to work on many different small problems, because you never know which one will grow into the next big idea. “You can’t always know exactly where to be, but you can keep active in places where something might happen.”
3. Turn Your Problem Around. Change A Defect Into An Asset
Lesson: “Ideal working conditions are very strange. The ones you want aren’t always the best ones for you.”
4. Knowledge And Productivity Are Like Compound Interest
Lesson: To be great you must have tremendous drive. Sometimes you will have to neglect smaller things in order to get bigger things done. Talent matters, yet “solid work, steadily applied, gets you surprisingly far.” But hard work and drive are not enough: they must be applied strategically.
Lesson: Seek out stimulating people because they can help you find important problems to solve. When you are working on an important problem don’t let anything distract you. A truly deep commitment is necessary for first class work.
6. Prepare Your Mind For Opportunity
Lesson: Have ideas about how to approach problems through so when opportunity comes, you are ready to fully seize it.
7. Work With the Door Open. You Will Sense What Is Important.
Lesson: “Working with the door open” today is really about being open to other fields, ideas, and thoughts that are outside your area of expertise. In order to identify problems worth solving, don’t get stuck by just learning from people in one field.
8. Know When To Work With The System, And When To Go It Alone
Lesson: In any organization there will be expectations to conform. Even though you want to be original all the time, it can pay to have the appearance of conformity. There are moments to fight and change the system, and moments to work with the system to produce a first class product. Of course, sometimes, you must have the courage to go it alone.
© 2014 by Jonathan Wai