Webster’s defines opportunities as, “a good chance for progress”.
Dictionary.com defines it as, “a situation or condition favorable for attainment of a goal”, or “a good position, chance, or prospect, as for advancement or success.”
Notice the repetition of the words good, chance, progress and success in these definitions. You see, I believe we all are given opportunities in life, and most only last for a short time. If we don’t act on the opportunity when it arises, we may never have the chance again.
It may be a chance to go to a good college, improve a skill, make a great investment decision, or even advance our careers. However we often fail to act because we assume the opportunity will present itself again. Remember the old adage, when you assume you make an ass out of u and me.
Making and Taking Opportunities, There is Hope
The good thing is sometimes opportunities arise out of our actions, despite our inaction. We do this not by sitting around waiting for opportunities, but by making them happen through dedication, hard work and striving towards our goals and dreams. As Alexander Graham Bell once said, “When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.”
One of the little secrets about opportunity is that our actions can increase our opportunities.
If you want to increase your chance of advancing your exposure to opportunity, try going beyond the status quo and try something different.
Making and Taking Opportunities: 11 Tips
- Volunteer at your local church, hospital, non-profit, school etc.
- Join a civic group like i.e. Rotary Club, J.C’s, 4-H, lions, etc.
- Attend a seminar or two or three.
- Make an effort to talk to strangers.
- Research new ways to invest money or use your talents.
- Go to a networking group that acquaintance keeps telling you about.
- Call an old friend and discuss ideas or make some new friends.
- Keep learning, go back to school, sign up for night classes.
- Spend time with your parents, siblings and other family members.
- Join a church, sing in a choir, attend a PTA event, talk to strangers, read new magazines, join a karate class, gym or your local YMCA.
The secret is to get out there, start making new connections, and obtaining new knowledge. Make an effort to do things you have not done before, and meet some new people. You might be surprised how many opportunities arise when you make an effort.
The tough part is knowing when to jump into an opportunity. There is no secret formula for success in this area. Sometimes we just have to follow our instincts, deal with our fears, and try to make an “educated guess”.
Some opportunities require us to stop doing something we love, or even make big changes in our lives. It is important to remember that nearly all-great accomplishments are only arrived at when we are willing to make great sacrifices. This does not mean we have to neglect our families or health, but outside of these two areas nearly everything else is negotiable.
Making and Taking Opportunities Conclusion
Please, Please, Please don’t let fear stop you from responding to an opportunity. If we start doing things outside our normal activities, maybe a new opportunity will present itself along the way. So get going and start taking action, you might find you make your own opportunities.