Under the CircumstancesHow often do we get a chance to read stories of unsuccessful people? Not often. Not too many authors take up the challenge. There is little value to the story other than reading about someone else’s problems with an unhappy ending. Stories written about failure, that we find interesting focus on overcoming failures on the way to success. They have a happy ending.

The most successful people are the people who failed the most, learned from their failures and never quit. They don’t wallow in their circumstances. We listen and may identify with where they have been but we are excited about where they end up. It’s not where you grow up … it’s where you end up that counts. You can’t change where you grow up … but you determine where you end up.

Everyone has circumstances and some people don’t mind telling you all about them.
Circumstances are the descriptions of our past and present. They can’t be changed but they do have value. Circumstances can be used as excuses or reasons. They are excuses to continue on our current path or reasons to choose a new direction. We make the decision.

But you don’t understand my circumstances. My teachers were not very smart. Or did you choose not to study your lessons. But the teachers didn’t tell me to study. But why did you think you were going to school? Because my mom told me I had to go to school. People with out vision live in the past. They know their circumstances.

But you don’t understand my circumstances. I do understand your circumstances. We gave you a free education. We gave you schools, teachers, books, transportation, and meals and you decided not to take advantage of these gifts. I do understand your past. But there is a lesson that you can learn from your circumstances. You can change. Make your circumstances the reason to grow, to focus, to dream and to achieve great things.

There are many stories of people who never had a formal education and still achieved success. They went back to school, learned a trade or developed a skill. They started a business. They raised a family. They taught others that they can achieve their dreams. Success starts with a decision. Success starts by shedding the cloak, the weight, of your circumstances.

It’s not where you grow up…it’s where you end up that counts. You can’t change where you grow up…but you determine where you end up.

In my new book, Grandpa And Andy…a grandfather’s handbook, Grandpa tells Andy that it’s OK to be bad at something so long as you keep learning from your circumstances. You can’t get good at something until you try it once. That’s Grandpa’s logic. He says that circumstances are stories of the past. Write your own story about your future. It will be the roadmap to success.