How to be great
I suppose we all have a vision to be great in life and leave a legacy when we die that we achieved something great and in our lives and we were regarded as great. We want our names in obituaries and our children and great grand children to remember us. Well, this may not be the case with everyone but I at least admit that I would like to be remembered not just for doing something great in my life but being great myself.
Mohammed Alhy was once quoted saying other achieve greatness but I was born great. If we were to take such a notion and not relate it to our own lives, we will find ourselves believing that we owe greatness to our birth and if we were not born great then we have an excuse of not achieving greatness in our lives. Bill Gates on the contrary, said that it is not your fault that you were born poor but if you die poor then it is your fault. In this context we find that yes "greatness can be achieved". No genius needs to be born in you for you to succeed. If you do what successful people do, you will end up being successful. That does not mean copy and paste what they do but follow their principles and ways of life that make them achieve greatness.
Start by admitting that greatness doesn’t come from the distraction and busywork that often fills up our lives.
It comes from making a difference in the world. Ask yourself what can I do to make the world a better place for someone? The reason I mention someone is that what you do may not please everyone but if helps many, then you are on way to greatness
Now consider how you can make a difference in the lives of others. Consider your current work, which perhaps already makes a difference — how can you refocus yourself on this work? Or consider creating a side project, and carving out the time for this.
Be the example of compassion for others around you.
Know that it doesn’t matter if you achieve the compassionate result you set out to achieve — what matters is the intention to improve the lives of others. You can’t control the result, but you can control the intention. There is one saying that says "You can take a donkey to a well but you cant force it to drink". Your initial intention is for the donkey to drink but if doesn't open its mouth, you might as well forget about achieving the result. Do not be carried away by the story of the donkey, lest go back to our intention to improve other people's lives.
Do not give up on your intention in fact show up, every day. With that intention.
Carve out the time. Put aside everything else. Realize that this life is limited and precious and amazing, and you shouldn’t waste a minute of it. Remember we may recover lost money, lost property, but we have never and we will never be able to recover a lost second.
Pursue this compassionate work with single-minded devotion. This one thing matters, and all else can be put aside for now, unless it’s in support of your work. (Good health supports your work, including a whole-foods diet, exercise, and sleep.)
Practice until you’re amazing.
This compassionate work, with good-hearted intention, pursued with single-minded devotion: this is greatness. At the end of life, you will be satisfied that you made a difference in someone's life and that is greatness.