|A High School Drop Out Who Achieved|
Brian Tracy is known world-wide as a leading authority on the development of human potential and personal effectiveness. His peak performance seminars have been attended by over 600,000 people. His motivational tapes and video tapes are produced in five languages, sold around the world, and followed religiously by millions.
Brian Tracy's gross income in 1990 exceeded $10 million. Not bad for a high school dropout from Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.
Brian is a living example of the power that's within everybody. Proof that a sincere desire to achieve will overcome any background.
"We have a family joke. I was born during the war, my mother said that since there was nothing else to do on P.E.I. they decided to have me!"
It wasn't a bad decision, if becoming such a phenomenal success is any yardstick by "Spud Island's" criteria.
"I must admit, I didn't have an impressive beginning. I failed out of high school and then began a succession of labouring jobs: washing dishes, digging wells, working in sawmills and on farms. By the time I reached 20, I realized if I didn't do something soon, nothing was ever going to change for me. "
So Brian set out on a lifelong study of what it is that makes some people successes while others fail.
"Why is it some people make more money, are healthier, have nicer relationships? It was an obsessive world-wide search for success and achievement in all its various aspects. After about 10 or 15 years I began to apply these principles to my own life-with some success, and began sharing these ideas with other people, first individually, then in small groups. Later I addressed seminars and large public audiences."
Now one of the most successful public speakers in the English language, Brian speaks to more than 100,000 people a year. His audio and video cassettes on success in business and relationships are the best selling of their kind in the world.
I asked Brian, why are some people more successful than others?
"The major ingredient in success comes down to this one word: responsibility. Most people don't realize that they are totally responsible for everything that happens to them. Once a person understands that and accepts that, they can't make any more excuses. They have to become responsible.
"The next step is to say, here's my goal, my aim. Here's where 1 want to go."
Brian relates the story of a man who came to a seminar of his in Toronto:
"He told me he had never thought about responsibility and setting goals. He'd been a car salesman for years. He was like everyone else he knew, always broke. After hearing me speak he made a decision to design a financial plan in which he would save 10% of his earnings and reach his goal in five years. He achieved his goal in three years and almost immediately was offered the opportunity to buy a Chrysler dealership. Now he had the experience, the knowledge for money. He bought the dealership and three years later he was a millionaire. When he had accepted responsibility, made a goal, made a plan and went to work on it, he became successful."
Money may be many people's goals in life, but what of those who want to achieve in other areas? Can this advice work for them?
"In order for us to be truly happy and to enjoy peace of mind, we have to
feel that our lives are making a difference. We are making a contribution of
some kind. Success means achieving a happiness or inner peace by doing
something that you love to do and doing it very well. Making a difference in
What about age? Is there a limit to the time that a person can still achieve goals and make a difference?
"Some people get turned on to their potential when they're fifteen, others at fifty-five. Numerous people are now going back to university in their 40's and 50ís to get medical and architectural degrees to start new careers and professions. Colonel Sanders was a short-order cook until the highways department in Kentucky re-routed traffic around his cafe. A few months later he received his first social security cheque. The two incidents, loss of job and getting old, spurred him on instead of shutting him down. He got angry. He told himself he was tired of living like that so he cashed that cheque and bought some pots and pans and went out to sell his own secret chicken recipe.
"He wasn't very successful at first. One thousand restaurant owners turned him down before he sold his first rights to use his formula. Surprisingly, it was in Toronto! They promised to pay five cents a chicken to the Canadian Red Cross and that was the beginning for Colonel Harlon Sanders, who was a multi-millionaire within the next ten years and one of the most familiar figures in the world. Colonel Sanders didn't get started until he was 65!
I told Brian that one of the problems with motivational seminars and tapes seems to be that people come away full of vim and vigor and good intentions but the feelings leave them and the tapes end up in a drawer, unused. How does a person keep cranked up?
"That is the most critical question in the whole field of human success, achievement and motivation. How to get going and stay going?
"The secret to success is not to bite off more than you can chew. People who make big resolutions usually fail. A big resolution is too enormous; it's like eating an elephant. You can eat an elephant but you have to do it a bite at a time."
What does Brian Tracy, successful high school dropout recommend to young people starting out?
"The most important thing I learned as a young man and all through my years is to select something you enjoy, don't just take whatever job that comes along. Go out and interview employers rather than have them interview you. See what they have to offer. You should get a kick out of your work. Something that will make you happy to do, not just to get a pay cheque.
"Commit yourself to paying any price, to going any distance. Commit yourself to being the best. If you become really excited by what you're doing, you'll be paid more, you'll be respected more and you'll derive more satisfaction and pleasure. And-you'd be able to control your whole destiny!"
Following Brian Tracy's advice has helped many people become Canadian Achievers.
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