Just think for a moment…where would we all be today had it not been for Scott Boilen, or George de Mestral. All of our childhood days would have been drastically different if not for people like Richard James. And business people, especially those who might be organizationally challenged, we owe so much to Dr. Spence Silver.
These are all very successful people who took something simple, and turned it into something hugely successful. I’ll bet that none of you, without Googling (see Monday’s blog), know who any of the aforementioned people are, yet you have been directly affected by their success.
None of you know Scott Boilen from the man in the moon, but many of you have, on a cold winter’s night, snuggled up on the couch in your very stylish Snuggie. I would even venture to say that some of you reading this were amongst the 20 million people who bought a Snuggie in the very first year it was available. That very simple little design has brought much success to its creator Scott Boilen.
Many of us have sported “them baggy sweat pants and the Reebok’s with the straps,” yet we never knew who George de Mestral was – the very guy who invented the Velcro that made those straps, and many, many other items using Velcro, possible.
There is not an individual reading this right now who has never owned, or at least never seen a Slinky commercial. The name Richard James means nothing to us, but it was James who, after seeing a spring fall to the floor, came up with the idea of the Slinky toy, which netted him hundreds of millions of dollars.
Right now, as many of you sit sit at your desk, reading this blog, some of you employed at one of the larger companies in the world – within arms reach is a stack of Post-it notes, invented by Dr. Silver who was actually researching a news type of glue when he stumbled upon the glue that would hold these sticky notes together. Those simple little brightly colored square pieces of paper with that unique adhesive has sold billions, and made Dr. Silver a very successful man. But again – you’ve never heard of him.
You probably know where I am going with all of this.
Culture, especially here in the United States, has led us to believe that success and happiness and “meaning in life” only come when people recognize you. You must be rich and famous, have your face on billboards, drive nice cars, live in gated communities in order to be successful, happy, fulfilled.
There is this misconception that the accountant on the 3rd floor of an office building in the corner cubicle, or the cashier at the local Wendy’s, or the Elementary school custodian cannot be successful or happy because of what they do, the amount of money they make and the fact that they are not famous. We’ve been led to believe that people in certain occupations cannot make an impact on others.
I beg to differ.
Success and happiness come, not in being known by what you do, but by the pride you take in your work, how you perform it and how you treat other people.
I love the quote from Jim Carrey that says:
“I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it’s not the answer.”
No. It’s not.
Can you do whatever you want to do in life? Can you live where you want, and be what you want, and drive what you want? Yes! But if you are an accountant, or a waitress, or a bus driver, you can be just as happy and just as successful as an NBA player or the CEO of a Fortune 500 Company.
You should have goals and dreams and aspirations. Just don’t belittle what you are doing now and think you cannot be successful or happy, or that you can’t make an impact on someone else today. YOU CAN!
Take pride in your work, show up on time, dress professionally, do something nice for somebody, don’t slack on your performance, do the best you can do, and at the end of the day, you will have been successful, happy, and accomplished.
Your true success will come by taking small things and doing big things with what you have. Glue. A spring. A piece of fabric.
Fame, houses, cars and Hawaiian vacations are the results of someone committed to doing their best at whatever they do and striving to make a positive impact on others. “THINGS” do not bring you success and happiness…they are a result!
Life begins TODAY!!!