This is a success story that will help you learn about how to use the right mindset to find success and it will also teach you how passion can save your life.
Below you’ll find a video in which Hawking gives us his 3 most important pieces of advice. But before you scroll down, take some time to know why I am posting this here.
A Deadly Illness
Imagine you’re 20 years old and with the expectation of a brilliant future career. You’re celebrating your birthday, you’re happier than ever and decide to take a walk with your girlfriend. After awhile you lay down on the grass to look up the sky while you talk and make plans for the future. Unfortunately, when you try to get up, you just can’t. You cannot even move.
That’s how it all started for Stephen Hawking. Doctors diagnosed him amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) which meant that his muscles would weaken gradually until he would have difficulties talking, swallowing and breathing. They predicted that he would not be able to survive for more than two years.
But he’s already lived for more than 50 years past his diagnosis.
Only 4% of cases survive more than 10 years and very rare cases are able to live more than 50. It is less than 1% and Stephen Hawking is one of them.
But what does this have to do with having success in a business? We all face struggles, deceptions and hard times,but not all of us are capable of getting over all those obstacles.
Any other person with that fate would have given up and prepared to have an acceptable quality of life for the rest of his remaining life. But he decided to go on with his Cosmology studies and became one of the most renowned scientists in the world.
What he has achieved is amazing for a person who cannot move or barely speak. He’s an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, he has received the Presidential Medal of Freedom (highest civilian award in the United States) and from 1979 to the year of his retirement was the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge. (This is the same seat that Isaac Newton held)
He has been able to fund his medical treatment and assistance through his books. He’s written several popular science bestsellers such as A Brief History of Time.
Now I must ask: how does he manage to have the strength needed to keep on working despite all the difficulties?
The 3 Pieces of Advice
He gives us some clues on this quote about the best pieces of advice he has given to his children:
- “Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet.”
- “Never give up work. Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it.”
- “If you are lucky enough to find love, remember it is rare and don’t throw it away.”
- Remember to look at the stars” means that you should have high goals and keep in mind the Big Picture so that you don’t get entangled in you daily struggles.
- By saying that “work gives you purpose” and that you should never give up, he’s saying that work is what approaches us to our goals. We must not lose sight of the stars (our main goals) but at the same time we should work on it and have all our steps clear.
- Love can be seen as personal love but also as passion. Don’t disregard your passions because they also provide meaning and give you the necessary strength to go on.
The Fourth Piece of Advice
If you give others all you have, you’ll get twice as much in return. What I mean is that you must keep adding value. Whatever is you want to do on you business, your main goal should be to help people. Help people with your products or services, or sharing what you learn.
It’s all about giving. Note how Stephen has given his life to research and reveal the secrets of the universe and help all of us to understand. He has worked to help people through his own limited means.
And he gets back through recognition and assistance. He could have spent his last 2 years in a hospice, instead he’s spent his last 50 years in the stars.
Take your time to share and comment. Would you add another piece of advice? How could you apply this to your current situation?
Image: Jim Campbell/Aero-News Network – Flickr – Licensed via Wikimedia Commons