Secrets of Success   ̶   Cold and Hungry    


A good friend of mine once passed on advice he received from his father about career development and life in general. His father told him:

“Always keep yourself a little
bit Cold and a little bit Hungry”

This wise advice has it origins in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs motivational Theory. At the bottom of the pyramid are our basic needs for food and shelter which are categorized as Deficiency Needs.  Deficiency Needs arise due to deprivation and are said to motivate people when they are unmet. Note that achieving ones full potential is at the top of the pyramid as the ultimate goal.

This advice was not meant to be taken literally.  What it is advising us to do, is to maintain a high level of motivation at all times and keep focused on achieving our ultimate goal. Each day we need to recognize that if we haven’t yet achieved our ultimate goal then we must remain focused and hungry to succeed. Most of all don’t become complacent and accept less than what you know you are capable of achieving until you reach your full potential.

Make Things Happen
Being a little bit cold and a little bit hungry is a condition that motivates us all into action to change our current situation. As you will read in Chapter 7
my family did not have a lot of money when I was growing up. As a result I was motivated by my situation to seek part-time work at a very early age.  I recall delivering the local newspaper when I was ten for about $2.00 a week and when I was eleven, I started my own small business selling light bulbs door to door. 

When I was about 14, I started my first 'real' job at the Seldon Hotel where I carried guests bags, delivered room service and on the weekends managed the front desk at night. Later I worked for Olive McDonald's Flowers delivering flowers on my bike after school and working in the store. Then I worked for Tamblyn's Drug Store delivering orders on my bike and stocking shelves in the store.

I was able to leverage these early childhood experiences later in life to motivate myself to work harder and strive for excellence in everything I did.  For example when I found myself overwhelmed by the challenges of the day and feeling sorry for myself I only needed to reflect on my past to remind myself what I was working for and why I was striving for that next promotion.

How Do You Make It Happen?
Keeping yourself ‘a little bet cold and a little bit hungry’ is not as difficult as you might think. It’s all about adjusting your perception of your current situation and focusing on seeking opportunities to improve.  If you see yourself as being capable of doing better or doing your boss’ job, then you will make it happen. If you commit yourself to ‘continuous self-improvement’' and take note of your progress by looking back at the end of each month and documenting your accomplishments, you will make success happen. It’s about not letting yourself become complacent - not being completely satisfied with current situation. It’s about motivating yourself to do better each and every day.  Never accept ‘good enough' when there's room for improvement. Always strive for excellence in everything you do.



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