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OpportunityFor years Bob felt there weren't any opportunities in his life. He wanted a life of comfort and ease, but felt he'd never have it. Bob wasn't exactly dumb, but he was lazy and made dumb choices in life.
He wasn't willing to better his odds through schooling, on-the-job training, attitude changes or other avenues of self-improvement. In a sense, he became satisfied with being dissatisfied with life because it was easy and familiar.
Like many, Bob came to think the good life was only for the privileged few. He thought his destiny was that of low-paying, menial jobs. He envied people with nice things, but wasn't willing to do what it took to have them. It took too long and required too much work, and he wanted instant gratification.
Instead of instant gratification, which is perhaps the biggest psychological trap of our times, a slow-rising bitterness grew within him over his lot in life.
As the years passed, Bob slowly spiraled downward into a deep depression. At one point during his despair Bob thought about making changes, but instead he again opted for instant gratification and settled for liquid comfort—he slowly slid into alcoholicism.
He spent what spare money he had in bars. He spent his time nurturing bar room friendships that didn't exist outside of the tavern walls. He spent his energy drowning everything he ever wanted in booze.
What Bob didn't understand is that life itself is opportunity. Death is the end of opportunity. Bob spent more time wishing than working. He spent more time envious than industrious. He spent more time blaming his bad luck than creating good luck. He made excuses for his lack rather than making a plan of attack to get what he wanted.
Bob died several years ago from alcohol related illnesses. Before he died he'd lost several jobs and ended up living on welfare, his wife had divorced him, and his only child disowned him. Such was the life of someone that chose an attitude of defeat rather than an attitude of hope. Who knows what he could have done if he'd only been willing to pay the price of a whole-hearted effort?
I knew Bob well. I knew his wife. I knew his son. I didn't know how to help him. Perhaps no one could help him because he wouldn't help himself. Bob chose to live a defeated life. At this one thing, he was successful.
Life is opportunity, but opportunity rarely forces itself upon us. Bob didn't want to waste his time on small opportunities, he wanted that one big shot at glory. He didn't understand that small opportunities are the stepping stones to bigger opportunities. His opportunities were lost on him because they weren't dressed in grandeur.
Don't you make the mistake of doing nothing now because you dream of big things in some misty future. Right now is the time to make the most of your life, which is your opportunity. There is no other time but now. Do you want the good life? Then you must be willing to do the little things now to get there later. Overnight success is not only highly improbable, it's a fool's game of chance with life as the stake.