Is more money going to help us to be successful? I listen to a documentary on Sadguru, and I conclude that it was not wealth that made him a success story. In fact, he surrendered his businesses which were making money to pursue yoga which he perfected.
I think that Sadguru was focused on what he was doing. He was eager to spread yoga and spent his time developing his skills in that field. When he started his yoga classes, students stayed with him because they realized that he had something of value to offer them.
When Napoleon took charge of France his reputation as a soldier was well known. France was in a state of anarchy after the overthrowing of the monarch. With numerous uprisings across the country, Napoleon was called upon to quell disturbances. Seeing that law and order was now in his hands, he declared himself ruler and went on to change the culture of not only France but entire Europe and the world.
Swami Vivekananda went to the Parliament of World Religion in Chicago in 1899 penniless. Despite this, he was the most outstanding presenter in the Parliament and the people were so eager to hear him that the organizers placed him last to speak so that the previous speakers would have an audience.
Swami Vivekananda’s thoughts awakened Indians and inspired them to organize and fight for the liberation of India. He also went on to formalize the Ramakrishna Mission, the first monastic order with an organizational structure with the objective to serve the welfare of the people. It was the first time that monks or sannyasins realized that their task was not confined to meditation and begging for alms but serving the needs of the poor -Daridra Narayan.
NR Narayan Murthy founded Infosys with 10,000 rupees he borrowed from his wife. While Narayan Murthy had limited capital, he had adequate knowledge that gave him the confidence that he would make a success of his venture.
Sudha Murthy related that she and Narayan agreed to spend Rs300 on books every month. She related that Murthy would use up the Rs300 for three months consecutively when she would have to intervene and insist that the next month’s allowance would be for her to make her purchases of books.
It was not money that built Infosys into a tech giant in India but the ideas that Narayan Murthy had in his head. Without knowledge, there can be no innovation and entrepreneurship and consequent wealth. Unfortunately, too many of us believe that wealth can be generated by working hard and saving money only to remain poor and destitute, the faith of most of mankind.
V.S. Naipaul’s life has been one of struggle. If he had not won a scholarship to Oxford, his chance of becoming a writer and winning the Nobel Prize might have been impossible. Naipaul focused on his writing and despite his many challenges persevered.
Amitabh Bachchan’s success is not because of wealth but his skills as an actor. Amitabh declared bankruptcy after his business enterprises failed. With creditors knocking on his door, Amitabh returned to acting and was able to once more rise to the top.
Brian Lara and Shiv Chanderpaul are two popular cricketers. Their success was because of their love for the game of cricket. In the case of Lara, his elder brothers took him to coaching classes and when they were not available a sister would take him along. In the case of Chanderpaul, his father was his coach and was never too tired to bowl him. It was never about making money from the sport but perfecting the skills.
Too many of us work too hard hoping that it would bring us wealth when our focus should be on perfecting what we do. If individuals can take a skill that they like and focus their energies on, they are going to excel without and if money comes in abundance, then it’s all the better.
So those of us who are hustling to make ends meet should focus on a particular skill, know it inside out and success would be theirs.
All the great leaders and revolutionaries did not have much money but whatever they set out to do they were confident that they have the knowledge to make them succeed.