October 7 – Seizing opportunities

October 7. “Opportunities are seldom labeled.” (Claude McDonald)

There are a lot of little quotes about opportunities. Some reference whether or how often opportunity knocks, others about how opportunity might be hard to recognize because it looks like work. It seems that people are always looking for opportunities, and seem to have a hard time finding them. Maybe this quote helps because it reminds us that opportunities don’t come gift wrapped with a neat label. It’s up to us to recognize the opportunity and to seize it.

I have a friend who I did some work with a few years back when I was a Dale Carnegie instructor. We have been friends on Facebook since. I remember that at the depth of the recession, she had posted on her page the quote that said she refused to participate in the recession. She had decided for herself that she was not going to fall victim to the belief that there were no opportunities, and that she was going to forge ahead and make her own. And, she did. She built a successful business for herself when the country, and even the world, was in the depths of recession.

For me that is the heart of the matter when it comes to opportunity. It’s very rare for something to just pop into one’s existence that is a golden opportunity. Rarely do you find the golden ticket in your candy bar, stumble on the winning lottery ticket, or kick over a big chunk of ambergris on the beach. No, that’s not how opportunity works. If I want opportunities in life, I need to not only seek them, but usually to make them.

The world is full of great chances to make a difference for myself and others. I just need to be willing to roll up my sleeves and dig in. I have to be willing to make the opportunities for myself and my family, and not wait for them to fall into my lap.

Today my reflection is on seizing opportunities that I make for myself.

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