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Prepare for Success

by Vicky Lampros

Virginia and Don lived in a small cottage on Long Island. The cottage was cluttered with evidence of their many interests—music, gardening, mathematics, history, birding. A friend decided to surprise them with an anniversary party in their own home. She needed a way to get the clutter out of the way, so she sent them flowers. She knew that Virginia would always clear and clean to make way for beautiful flowers.

What would you do differently if you were expecting something beautiful to arrive soon?

Dr. Louis C. Smith is a scientist and a photographer. He told me about a student who once conducted an off-the-wall experiment with surprising success. When he asked the student how he planned to follow up, the student replied, “I don’t know, I wasn’t expecting it to work.” Dr. Smith reprimanded the student, not because he did the unexpected, but because he had not prepared for success. According to Dr. Smith, you should always prepare for success.

How would you prepare for success? What would need clearing and cleaning? How might you look at your life and your work differently if you were expecting success? How would your focus shift? What would you let go of? Would you recognize success if it arrived on your doorstep? Could expecting success change the likelihood of success?

Suggestion: pick one thing that you’d do differently if you were expecting success and start with that. And, of course, notice what you notice. Have all the fun you can. Success should be fun, don’t you think?

Tools for Transformation is a series of blog posts about improving your life. The series is about using what you already have—yourself, your community, and your resources—to make a difference, to add meaning and grace, to explore new territory, and perhaps have more fun than you ever thought possible.