“Two men were walking in a forest, when they suddenly saw a savage, hungry-looking bear. One of the men quickly put on a pair of running shoes. The other guy exclaimed, “You idiot! You can’t run faster than a bear …”
To which the first guy replied, “But I don’t have to run faster than the bear, I only have to run faster than you!”
The Wrong Take Away
In the business world I’ve most often heard that little story told to get the wrong point across. Usually the person relating the story uses it as a spring board to convey some point along these lines.
If you want to be successful you must outrun your competition.
Nope. Wrong. Dumb. Misses the greater truth.
I caught myself falling into that line of thinking at work yesterday.
Things have been nuts. We’ve all been scrambling just to keep our heads above water. We’re all a little behind.
As I was assessing the situation and where I was at I thought, “Well at least I’m not as far behind as my boss.”
Nope. Wrong. Dumb.
The Wrong Measure
Truly successful people don’t keep their eyes on everyone else’s progress. They keep their eyes on their own lane.
If you measure your success relative to how everyone else is doing you’ll probably end up far below your potential.
One of my good friends in the Navy washed out of pilot training later than anyone else I ever saw, after he got his wings. He used to joke that he was the Worst of the Best.
I would usually “correct” him jokingly and say he was the Best of the Rest.
Getting it Right For Success
We all have seeds of greatness planted within us. Those precious seeds will ultimately come to fruition when we maximize our potential.
And we can’t maximize our potential when we are focused on how poorly people around us are doing.
Rather than simply trying to outrun the next guy, take a close look at which track you are on. Too many people have spent their entire lives climbing the ladder of success only to find they had it leaning against the wrong wall.
Are you running the best race for you?
Or are you running someone else’s race better than they are?
Take the time to find the best race for you to run. Then don’t let yourself get distracted by how others are running the race you were meant to run. Run your race to the absolute best of your ability.
When we do that we will no longer settle for being the Best of the Rest. That will be the point when each of us finds ourselves truly becoming the Best of the Best.