The other evening I was out having a cigar and a beverage. While sitting around a fire pit (an outdoor wood fire), I overheard an interesting conversation. [We were all sitting and standing pretty close to one another and this group was talking fairly loudly, so one couldn’t help but hear.] This guy was bemoaning how bad his life was. He looked to be in his late twenties. His wife offered a different perspective on their life, but he would have none of that. He went on about the many events in his life that had defeated him (and he obviously felt he was a “victim”). He complained about all the things that had happened to him or had been done to him. He complained that no matter what he did, things kept turning out wrong. He even pointed to where they lived as proof that he was a failure. Then he continued on about how God must have abandoned or punished him. He also decided that surely he must have “bad” genes – that he was simply wired for failure.

Now maybe you don’t know anyone like that or maybe all that sounded a bit extreme, but let me draw a parallel to some of the people I’ve met in business. I’ve seen lots people who have done “OK”. They have a business, a home, and a family. They can pay their bills for the most part – at least the minimum payments. They’re liked by others, and view themselves as capable and competent. And yet… something is wrong. In spite of what they’ve achieved, they know they are destined for more. Inside, in their heart of hearts, they know that where they are in life is not where they could be. Some of these folks secretly feel they’re destined for greatness of one kind or another. Some secretly feel they’re destined to impact large numbers of people. Some secretly feel they’re destined to have great financial success and recognition. But none of these folks have realized their destiny. In fact, they’re often nowhere near where they want to be.

No doubt they started their adult life in pursuit of their destiny with big goals, ambition and energy. But time after time their efforts met with mediocre results. They tried one approach to achieve success, but didn’t have much success. Then they tried a different approach, but got the same result. And next, a third approach with poor results. And consequently, slowly but surely, they begin to accept mediocrity. They begin to accept the “fact” that they just aren’t meant to succeed. That the destiny they once envisioned for themselves was a fantasy and instead, their “fate” or ultimate destiny is to be “average”. These people have the very same mentality as our friend at the fire pit. These people end up adopting a defeatist attitude – and you already know how I feel about the importance and impact of attitude on our life. (If not, go to my website and read my recent article on attitude.)

Maybe you are one of those people I described above. Maybe you (secretly) know what your true destiny is, but have gotten to a point where that spark of a vision has almost been extinguished. Maybe you have tried “everything” and feel that your “destiny” is one of mediocrity – living check to check, not having much of an impact, and/or being completely unenthused.

Anyone can make great strides towards advancing in the direction of their destiny – but it takes a definite shift in attitude, a definite shift in action, and a bit of courage…

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Written by Michael Beck, “Head Zookeeper” at, a marketing strategies website dedicated to getting more clients, making more money, and having more fun! Receive a FREE program on recruiting & prospecting success at:
Permission to reprint with full attribution. © 2008 Exceptional Leadership, Inc.