One fundamental of success is that you won’t get a free ride to success. If you want success you have to know what you’re willing to give to get it. What are you willing to give in terms of your own persistence and determination? What are you willing to give in terms of the value you bring that will make other people want to give you their money to help you to get to success? What are you willing to give in terms of your own personal investment of time, talents, and treasures?

Success is an elusive dream for those who lack persistence and determination. Success is truly a journey not a destination because as you achieve each mile stone on the path for success there is always another mile stone to work toward. The journey is never without challenges, set backs, and emotional trials. Persistence and determination spring from your intense desire, passion, or even obsession to obtain the next mile stone on your journey. Without persistence and determination you give up short of the prize. You’ll be like the gold miner who spent many years, all his money and the money of his friends digging miles of tunnels seeking the mother lode before giving up and selling his mine flat broke and in debt to everyone he knew. The new mine owners dug but a few feet before striking the largest vein of gold ever found. Now this particular miner learned a lesson in persistence and determination and went on to become the most successful life insurance agent of his time because he never took “no” as a final answer.

You don’t buy things unless the perceived value of what you want is greater than the asking price, and neither will anyone else. Whether your ideal of success involves selling a product or service or obtaining a higher position in a bigger organization your value proposition for what you bring to the table must be greater than it’s perceived cost. This fundamental of success and sales is inviolable. The only way you can know if your value is greater than your cost is through research into and about your market.

What are you willing to invest? Your investment of time, talents and treasures will be great, and that’s why you need a passion almost an obsession for your ideal of success. If you’re a parent you know your greatest treasure is your children yet if you knew before you conceived your child the investment you would need to make in your child you might have been terrified. But you would gladly make that investment for the treasure of your child.

Your total investment will only be worth the price if your success satisfies your natural motivators and fulfills your values. You have attitudes about knowledge, utility, people, aesthetics, power, and how you should live your life that are your natural motivators. You need to have these natural motivators satisfied. You also have a set of values that are important to you that you need to have fulfilled. When you account for your motivators and your values as you develop your plans for success, you will find that you’ve truly achieved success as you mark off each mile stone.

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