One of the greatest secret of success is helping others to succeed. Your chances on success increase exponentially when you help other people attain success. Someone once made an observation that has become a signature on my emails. He said “when a man is wrapped up in himself, he makes a pretty small package – and that package contains an unhappy person” Think about it for a moment: Have you ever known a genuinely happy self centered person? I doubt.
I once read a story about a man who was hiking in the mountains. He was taken by surprise in a sudden snow storm and quickly lost his way. He knew he needed to find shelter fast, or he would freeze to death. Despite all of his efforts, his hands and feet quickly went numb. In his wandering, he literally tripped over another man who was almost frozen. The hiker had to make a decision: Should he help the man or should he continue in hopes of saving himself?
In an instant, he made a decision and threw off his wet gloves. He knelt beside the man and began massaging his arms and legs. After the hiker had worked a few minutes, the man began to respond and was soon able to get on his feet. Together the two men, supporting each other, found help. The hiker was later informed that by helping another, he had helped himself. His numbness vanished while he was massaging the stranger’s arms and legs. His heightened activity had enhanced his circulation and brought warmth to his hands and feet. Isn’t it ironic that when he lost sight of himself and focused on solving another’s problem he solved his own problem?
Hakeem Olajunwon is the all pro centre for the Houston Rockets, the world’s champion of the National Basketball Association in 1994 and 1995. The year before they won their first championship against the New York Knicks, Hakeem realized that because he was a team leader, his responsibility was more pronounced than anyone else’s. He recognized that he had a weakness in his game, which was the fifteen-foot jump shot. Think about it. He earned a multimillion dollar income and had been all pro for six consecutive years. However, he felt that the team would never win a championship until he improved his shooting from fifteen feet
Before the 1993-94 seasons, he went to the gym everyday and practiced five hundred fifteen-foot jump shots. That’s an incredible test of building strength, endurance and improvement in performance. In 1994, when the Houston Rockets defeated the New York Knicks in seven games, there was only one game with more than a five-point difference in the score. Replays revealed that had Hakeem not improved his shooting percentage from fifteen feet, the New York Knicks would have won instead of the Houston Rockets.
Here are some questions for you to think about: First, do you believe that Hakeem is popular with his teammates as a result of the extra efforts he made to help bring the championship to Houston? Second, do you believe Hakeem was thrilled to win the world championship ring? And third, do you understand why he got a significant raise when his contract was up for renewal?
It is true. You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want. Hakeem helped his team mates, the owners and the fans gain that championship. He won big-time because he, too, was part of the championship team and as a matter of fact, was named the most valuable player for his tremendous efforts.
The fastest way to reach the mountain peaks of life is to forget about self and help other people reach greater heights.
See you at the top.