One of the characteristics I most admired in my study of self-made millionaires, was their confidence. At first, in the early days of my five-year study of the rich, I considered confidence a prerequisite, an inherent characteristic, that all successful people must have had prior to realizing success. But I was wrong. Confidence, I learned, was a byproduct not a prerequisite.
It takes courage to pursue your dreams and the goals behind those dreams. Courage, because the pursuit of a dream is very risky. In the beginning, nothing goes right. Mistakes, pitfalls, setbacks and obstacles are ever present in the lives of those who pursue a dream. In the early going, the pursuit of a dream feels like you are at war. Every day is a new battle to overcome mistakes, pitfalls, setbacks and obstacles. But those mistakes, pitfalls, setbacks and obstacles force you to learn what to do and what not to do. You grow. You evolve. You learn. And that growth, evolution and learning becomes the foundation upon which those who pursue their dreams build their foundation for success. The more mistakes, pitfalls, setbacks and obstacles you are able to overcome, the sounder that foundation. Success, it turns out, is built upon a mountain of mistakes, pitfalls, setbacks and obstacles. The more mistakes, pitfalls, setbacks and obstacles you are able overcome, the higher your mountain.
True success is defined by your ability to overcome the mistakes, pitfalls, setbacks and obstacles that you encounter during your success journey. Each time you overcome them, you gain confidence. Confidence grows with each victory. And the more confident you become, the more certain you become that you will ultimately succeed. That confidence then fuels you with optimism and enthusiasm and you gain more courage along the journey. You begin to believe in yourself like never before. You begin to believe that you can overcome any mistake, pitfall, setback or obstacle that life throws at you. And those challenges lose their power over you. They no longer intimidate or frustrate you. Confidence, it turns out, is an acquired trait. One acquired during the journey towards success.