“Don’t wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Weak people wait for opportunities; strong people make them.”
– Orison Swett Marden
You are never going to be prepared enough for your first concert. You could have practiced more, memorized the veering structure of the songs one more time or reviewed every single step of your performance before the show.
You are never going to be one hundred percent ready for a final exam. You could have studied more, read one last page before entering the classroom or taken one more practice test to enhance your knowledge.
You are never going to be prepared enough to start an ambitious project. You could have asked for more opinions, attended different preparation courses or made a deeper research taking into consideration hundreds of possible variables and scenarios.
The truth is that you are never going to be prepared enough to take the train. But if you don’t do it, you may be losing one of the best opportunities that will come your way. You won’t get unlimited chances to have what you want and nothing is worse than regretting the opportunities you didn’t seize.
As André Gile said: A man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.
Opportunities require courage, and this only depends on us.
We often miss great opportunities because we believe that we are not prepared for them, that it is not the right moment. We think that we lack knowledge or experience to face new challenges and we lay back in our perfectly ergonomic chairs without even trying. We are scared, afraid of failing or running without knowing where to go and what to expect on our way.
The truth is that we are never going to feel fully prepared when we get a great chance. And that’s OK.
Great people do things before they are ready. They do things before they know they can do them. That’s how people and organizations grow, by taking risks.
Jump on and don’t look back!
By definition, an opportunity is a challenge. Opportunities force us to take one more step, to reinvent ourselves, to run into the unknown and to leave the comfort zone in which we are used to live.
An opportunity involves difficulties and implies uncertainty. It doesn’t come with a guarantee of success or the promise of a better future. But one thing is for sure, you will develop and grow from the experience. You will improve and get better for the next time and, if you fail, you will learn from your mistakes and won’t repeat them again.
You will never know if you can succeed unless you try and push your boundaries.
If it scares you, then it might be a good thing to try. Trust your gut and go for it. Taking chances requires some blind trust in most cases.
Here is my advice: Say ‘Yes’ and then figure out how to do it.
As Paulo Coelho wrote: When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back.
Many times we realize that we missed an opportunity when we cannot do anything about it.
Don not miss the train. Opportunities are often late, but they always go away fast.