“Once upon a time, a long time ago, in a land far away, there lived an old man in a house on top of a hill. He had dedicated his entire life to study and meditation. He was known far and wide for his intelligence, sensitivity, and wisdom. Politicians, businesspeople, and dignitaries came to visit him and ask him questions. His answers were always correct. He seemed to have a special faculty that enabled him to cut to the essence of any problem or issue. When his answers and solutions were implemented, the result was always excellent. His fame soon spread throughout the land.
In the village below the hill was a group of boys who played together. Sometimes they climbed the hill to visit the old man and ask him questions, for which he always seemed to have the correct answer. Over time, it became a little game, with the boys continually trying to think of a question that the old man could not answer. But they were never successful.
One day, the ringleader of the group, a boy named Aram, called the others around him and said, “I have finally found a way to stump the old man. Here in my hand, I have a bird. We will go and ask the old man if
the bird is alive or dead. If he says that it is dead, I will release it and it will fly away. If he says that it is alive, I will crush it, and the bird will be dead. Either way, he will, at last, have been proven wrong.
Excited about the prospect of finally catching the old man with a wrong answer, they hurried up the hill. The old man watched them coming and noticed the eager looks on their faces. Then Aram stepped forward and asked, “Old man, I have a bird here in my hands. Is it alive or is it dead?”
The old man looked at their mischievous, expectant faces and then quietly said, “Aram, it is in your hands.”
The point and moral of this story is that almost everything that happens to you is in your hands. Your destiny is very much up to you. Your future is largely determined by yourself, by your own choices and decisions. What you achieve is the result of what you do, or fail to do, day by day and year by year.
When I was 21, in the middle of a cold, cold winter, I sat in my small one-room apartment and contemplated my future. It didn’t look very promising. I was a high school dropout working as a construction laborer, too broke to even go out the week before payday. Suddenly, I had a revelation. Just like the story about the old man, I realized that everything that happened to me from that moment onward was in my own hands. No one else was going to do it for me. I was responsible.
The management guru Peter Drucker wrote, “The very best way to predict the future is to create it.”
Everyone wants to be happy, healthy, popular, prosperous, and successful in whatever they do, but the only way for you to achieve and enjoy all that is possible for you is to create your own future. And the good news is that there have never been more opportunities, in more different areas, for you to fulfill your dreams and goals than there are today. Your chief aim in life should be to take full advantage of everything that your world has to offer.
There are basically two types of people in our world, the active and the passive. Only about 10 percent are proactive, and although they are very much in the minority they are the movers and shakers in every area. They are the people who take their lives into their own hands and make things happen. They accept complete responsibility for themselves and the results of their actions. They dare to go forward in the face of risk and uncertainty. When you decide to create your own future, you join this vital minority. You begin to push to the front of the line in your own life.
The majority of people tend to be passive in their responses and reactions to life, constantly wishing and hoping that something good will happen to them. They buy lottery tickets, watch television endlessly, and complain about their situations. They resent successful people, but they are not willing to make the efforts that others have made to achieve what they have achieved. They live their lives like people waiting for a bus on a street where no buses go.”- Page 9, “Create your Own Future “ by Brian Tracy