"Without energy, drive, constant propulsion, a person need never expect to become truly successful." So says Editor-in-Chief Herbert W. Armstrong in his booklet, The Seven Laws of Success. Just what is drive? Why is it essential for success? And how can we apply it in our lives? In this series of studies, we have learned that there are definite laws that one must follow to achieve true and lasting success. The first of these laws is to set meaningful and worthwhile goals. Then one must prepare himself to achieve them. This involves education — the second law of success. Third comes good health. But following these three laws is not enough. After all, success is accomplishment — it is doing. Like a salmon fighting its way upstream, one must drive himself forward to accomplish his goals. He must put a constant prod on himself, applying the fourth law of success — drive! In this fourth study on the seven laws of success, you will learn why drive is absolutely essential for real success, and how you can develop it in your life. But before you begin, be sure to get your Bible, a pen or pencil and some paper. Writing out the Bible verses that answer the questions asked in this study will help you to remember the important principles you'll be learning. 1. Just how much effort and energy is required to become successful in all that we undertake? Ecclesiastes: 10, Colossians 3:23. Throw yourself wholeheartedly into all that you do! Whether in your studies at school or in your work on the job, put all your energy into it. If you're active in sports, strive to do your best. And if one of your goals involves music — practice, practice, practice! Whatever your goals, put all your energy, will power and effort into accomplishing them. Halfhearted effort may carry one partway toward his life's goals, but it won't get him far enough to actually reach them. Your accomplishments will largely be a reflection of your drive and determination to achieve your goals. 2. Will the person who really applies himself become a successful leader? Proverbs 12:24. Will he find himself in the company of successful people? Proverbs 22:29. But what happens if one lacks drive and initiative — refuses to put forth effort? Proverbs 10:4, 13:4, 24:30-34. Those who are universally acclaimed as being successful have one thing in common — they drive themselves. They put a constant prod on themselves. They refuse to give into the urge to slow down and take it easy. To become truly successful, you must also propel yourself forward energetically. But this kind of drive also includes your attitude of mind. You need to have a deep, inner enthusiasm for all your work and for life itself. Former U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt was a man who radiated enthusiasm. He generated enthusiasm in others. His life was one of activity and great accomplishment. Illustrative of his attitude was a statement he made to an audience at the Sorbonne in Paris, France: "It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. "The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, and comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds: who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devoting; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat." How can you generate this kind of enthusiasm? One way is to think about your goals as if you had already reached them to picture the benefits their accomplishment will bring to you and others. You will then have a clear mental picture of what you want to accomplish. Picturing the benefits will help you desire your goal more. And desire is the fire that ignites enthusiasm. Enthusiasm in turn leads to positive action that, if continued, leads to success. And success produces confidence that leads to even greater success! 3. Will some goals and projects we undertake not be all pleasure will some tasks involved in achieving them be difficult? Proverbs 20:4. Should we nevertheless drive ourselves to accomplish them? Proverbs 14:23.
Former U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt practiced the fourth law of success — drive! (Wide World Photo)
Don't let the immensity or difficulty of any goal or project overwhelm and discourage you. Don't procrastinate, quit or make excuses. If necessary, break the project down into smaller parts and concentrate on one part at a time. Then put all your energy and mind power into the task at hand and complete it with zest! If you cannot finish it, at least get started. Then be sure to return and complete it later. As Proverbs 14:23 shows, you will profit from your efforts in the end. 4. Does the principle revealed in Proverbs 13:20 and 27:17 show that friends can be a great influence to spur us on to do well and be successful? You may have noticed that when you're in the presence of some people, you tend to be invigorated and motivated to accomplish. This is because we tend to follow the example of those with whom we associate more closely. Search out and be friends with those who are an inspiration and who are themselves success oriented. 5. Regarding the overall purpose of life that of becoming a member of God's universe-ruling Family — did the apostle Paul drive himself so that he might attain this No. 1 goal in his life? Philippians 3:11-14, II Timothy 4:7-8. And did he encourage others, including the young man Timothy, to do the same? I Corinthians 9:24-27, I Timothy 6:12. 6. Did Jesus Christ, who knew firsthand what it was like to be a member of the God Family, exert great energy and effort to reenter the Family of God? Hebrews 4:15, 5:7, Luke 22:41-44. Does He want us to also strive to eventually enter the Kingdom of God? Matthew 6:33. Paul and Christ knew and thoroughly understood the great purpose in life — the purpose for their very existence! It was their No. 1 goal and they, with the help of God's Holy Spirit, pursued that goal with all their might! They set us an example. 7. Will God help us to have the energy, drive and motivation to achieve our No. 1 goal in life, as well as our secondary goals, if we seek Him wholeheartedly and desire to actually do His will? Isaiah 40:28-31, Psalm 119:2, Philippians 2:13, I John 3:22, Hebrews 11:6. God is the ultimate source of the motivation and drive we need to achieve the purpose for our existence — our No. 1 goal in life. If you trust God and do your part, He will also help you to attain your other goals and ambitions — as long as they are within the limits of His overall will as revealed in His Word — the Holy Bible. Remember: To be truly successful in life, you must put a constant prod on yourself. You must drive yourself to accomplish. Begin now to apply this fourth law of success, along with all the others. You will be amazed at the results!