A friend once told me that sacrifice is essential for success. I didn’t believe him. I was at that ripe age where I still felt entitled, I still believed that greatness was within my clutch, and I was still prideful in who I was and where I was going. Sacrifice was unnecessary.I was shocked when the post-college world revealed to me that greatness isn’t something you simply unlock once you step out into the real world. Rather, it’s stepping-stones that stretch for miles on miles. Greatness is at the end of a very long road.
With each step forward on that long windy road, I am constantly reminded of what my friend told me. It wasn’t until the end of college that I started applying his advice. What I learned is that sacrifice is the necessary shortcut to achieving greatness.
Society preaches to us that we are never to make concessions for our passion. It is because of this that sacrifice has become the lost ingredient in the recipe for greatness.
Yet, sacrifice is not necessarily about making concessions. It’s about attaining the humility to step towards a better future. It’s about doing what is necessary for the betterment of yourself and others.
As each day rolls into the next, here are the many ways I have had to sacrifice, and the many ways you might have to sacrifice in order to accomplish greatness.
Don’t let money muddy the waters of your craft. Be willing to be poor to do what you love, because if you truly care for your passion to that degree, then you will certainly be rich in the fruit of your work.
SACRIFICE HANGING OUT
There are many times when my friends are hanging out and I can’t join them because work needs to get done. This might be difficult, but the funny thing about time is that it moves forward, and in order for you to move forward in your life, you have to be willing to let time carry you into another opportunity to hang with your family, friends, or loved ones. Don’t let greatness slip through your fingers because you couldn’t pass down one opportunity with people who you’ll see again. While community is essential, too much community can paralyze us into never taking hold of greatness.
SACRIFICE FEAR OF FAILURE
The fear of failure stuns my body into immobility. But if I truly was too scared to fail, I would never take the risks necessary to create beauty in the unknown.
You could always be doing something else. But to achieve greatness requires that you schedule the time you need to devote your energy to your passion.
We all need rest. Don’t fool yourself into believing that your passion takes precedence over your time to decompress. Rest, relax, and then reengage your work. If you step away from your work, you give yourself the opportunity to gain the energy you need to knock it out.
Humility and sacrifice are great dancing partners. In order for sacrifice to work, humility must be present. We should not think of ourselves too highly, otherwise, we deny ourselves of the community that happens below us.
We are not entitled to anything. Rather, we are simple beings living a complex existence. The only way we can make it is if we travel on the same level as everyone else, not above them.
As I read over the Gospel story, I see the sacrifice that Jesus gave on the cross. He gave His very existence for the betterment of society. In doing so, He achieved greatness, not for Himself, but for all of humanity. It is no coincidence that a sacrifice was mandatory for the greatness of salvation. Because of Jesus Christ, I learned that sacrifice is a component stitched into the very D.N.A. of greatness. We must be willing to sacrifice in order to achieve greatness.
I am still in the process of learning what it takes to be great, but sacrifice is definitely helping me get to end of the road faster. What are aspects of your life you could sacrifice for greatness?