Are You a Winner or a Survivor?

I believe that a powerful energy emerges when we learn to translate everyday words to pictures and new meanings. This is a skill that we need to learn to survive through our journey whether we are building a business or life that you love. Please view my video below.

The story I shared in my video came from my book, “Sheer Determination, Swimming Upstream in a Downstream World” Chapter 29: ONE STEP AT A TIME, WITH A STOMACH MADE OF IRON. Here it is for your reading.

One year, I attended a conference sponsored by the Small Business Administration. I sat in a room with 40 local business owners and listened to presentations on topics such as human resources, marketing, and finance. The shock for me came at the end of the presentation on finances. The instructor pointed to the four corners of the room and said, “Now, I want to see how many years each of you has been in business. Please go to your area as I call out the years.”

I wondered what he was trying to prove. I didn’t like being singled out and felt very nervous.

“Everyone, please listen carefully. Everyone who has been in business for three years or less, please move to this corner of the room,” he said.

Around 70% of the people moved to the corner of the room he pointed to.

He continued, “How many of you have been in business for three-to-seven years?” A hand-full of participants moved to their designated corner.

“All of the people who have been in business for seven-to-twelve years, go to that corner,” the instructor instructed. Only two people went to that corner. By this time, I was the only one not standing in a corner.

“The last corner is for people who have been in business for 18 years or longer. I see that only one person is left,” he said as he looked at me, “So how many years have you been in business?”

I was a bit self-conscious, but said, “I’ve been in business for 28 years.”

“Wow, that is a record-breaker!” the instructor exclaimed.

“Everyone, please give this woman a big round of applause. She is a survivor!”

I must have looked stunned, as the whole room clapped. People came up to me wanting to know my secrets for longevity in the business world. 

That moment was when I realized that there are no winners in small businesses; there are only survivors. Many of the trendy, small business owners whom I had envied in the past, had gone by the wayside. And yet, here I was, still standing. 

Now, when people tell me I’m successful, I always reply with, “I don’t know if I consider myself successful, but I know for sure that I AM A SURVIVOR.” 

SURVIVOR: There are no winners in business or life, only survivors.

YOUR TASK: Define the meaning of success. Be willing to climb to the top of the mountain to achieve your personal goals.

YOUR AHA! MOMENT: When you reach the top, you realize how much you learned from your struggles and how much you wished you were climbing again!

Please send me your thoughts and ideas on the word, Survivor. Do you think you are a Survivor? I know you are.

Comments

Karla
Reply

What a good story! You are very good at relaying stories. And lovely video, too. You’re doing great!

And 28 years is such a testament to your drive. My goodness, a testament to all sorts of positive qualities. This gives me food for thought to first figure out what success means to me. I haven’t given that any attention other than just generally thinking I’d like XYZ to happen, etc. So, I won’t know if I’ve been successful or not, other than generally.
Thanks for the helpful post Kay! I’m going to make some tea and give that some thought. : )

KayHirai
Reply

Karla, you are definitely a survivor. Oh my gosh, the work we are doing is not easy…everytime you learn something, there’s another learning curve ahead. When we get going with our on-line courses, we will realize how much we went through (the ups and downs, and all the times we got discouraged and wanted to quit. But did we? No. We will make it to our goal.

Chloe
Reply

Hi Kay,

Love these articles. Would love for you to share more about the challenges you faced at different stages of your career and how you overcame them.

Best,
Chloe

KayHirai
Reply

Hi Chloe, I’m glad that you liked my article. Thank you for your feedback. Yes, I will share more stories of my business journey.

Leave a comment

name*

email* (not published)

website