Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Driving Force: Achieving Personal Success

The Driving Force: Achieving Personal Success

By: L.Starling


“Some succeed by what they know, some by what they do; and few by what they are.” – Ebert Hubbard 


   Success really isn’t that easy to define, especially when it refers to a college student’s perspective of success. Success means many different things to many different people. Between ages, culture, finances, and ethnic groups, success can be classified in numerous ways. That being said, a student’s idea of what success truly is will constantly change throughout his/her life.

   In my own life, I’ve had to fight for my education. Growing up in a strict religious atmosphere, I was taken out of school at the age of fourteen and had to work in my family’s business in a warehouse. For me, academic education had always been a struggle, so I didn’t allow myself to measure my success on acquiring degrees. My personal success was determined by the amount of effort I put into whatever I believed in and cared deeply for at the time.

   But how does one achieve one’s own measure of success? What are the common steps in order to succeed? Perhaps the first step would be to make a list of the values that we hold of great importance. Then we might get a clearer perspective on what direction we’re driving our lives.

   According to the motivational specialist, Anthony Robbins, from his 12th volume of Power Talk: Strategies for Lifelong Success, he states:

“The truth is that even in the information age, information is not enough. Action is what unites every great success. Action is what produces results. Knowledge is only potential power until it comes into the hands of someone who knows how to get himself to take effective action. In fact, the literal definition of the word ‘power’ is ‘the ability if act’”.

   According to Robbins there are seven basic triggering mechanisms that can ensure your success:


Trait #1: Passion

Trait #2: Belief

Trait #3: Strategy

Trait #4: Clarity of Values

Trait #5: Energy

Trait #6 Bonding Power

Trait #7 Mastery of Communication


   Many others can benefit from Robbins formula, but despite his teachings, there is another factor that must be considered. Are college students really aware of which direction they are heading? Are students paying attention to their lives and making realistic decisions in order to attain their dreams? Or is it the power of judgment from the outside world that influences a young person’s decisions? 

    In reference to the essay Indian Education, written by Sherman Alexie, Sherman had a different view of academic success. Having lived on an Indian Reservation, Sherman’s writings greatly illuminated how powerful outside influences can impact a child’s life.

   Early on, a child is learning the most basic and most complicated forms of values in life. Depending of the atmosphere they grow up in, a child’s idea of success becomes formulated and is carried on throughout their future. If personal values are not balanced, or if one value clashes with another, such as the two common beliefs “Seize the moment!” and “Don’t jump the gun!” a great conflict can disrupt that child’s logic as they become a student. According to William Zinsser in his essay College Pressures, he states that “it will be the student’s own business to break the circles on which they are trapped. They are too young to be prisoners of their parents’ dreams and their classmates’ fears. They mush be jolted into believing in themselves as unique men and women who have the power to shape their own future.”

   So, in conclusion, I believe that it is beneficial for a college student to determine who they are and what they truly desire early on in life; otherwise they could become lost inside the opinions of others without even realizing it. To be a success really depends on one’s outlook, what one admires and judges. In essence success can depend on what you know… or what you do. But most importantly success is in knowing who you are. 

L. Starling           



Works cited

Robbins, Anthony.  “Power Talk-: Strategies for Lifelong Success. Unlimited Power.   

Audio Book.  October 12th, 2005 

Alexie Sherman. Indian Education, written by Sherman Alexie. Patterns for College

Writing (2004) 126-133. Sept 6th, 2005. October 11th 2005.          

Zinsser William.  “College Pressures.”   Patterns for College Writing (2004) 447-55.

October 11th 2005.

Hubbard Ebert.  “Quotations” The Quotation Station. Posting date unknown. 

October10th, 2005  <>


About the Author

This article was wrtten by L. Starling.

Starling Books is a website that focuses on independent writers and artists and promoting quality work of a spiritual nature. We also specialize in Artwork, Prints, Graphic Design, Web Design, High Impact Still Photography, Traditional & Graphic Novels that relate to meditative healing and Global Awareness.

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