Success Equals Hard Work


ID-100147799As a student of human behavior, I am often so very amazed at the vast number of people who think that success comes via dumb luck.

Consider this quote from the great Vince Lombardi.

?The dictionary is the only place that success comes before work. Work is the key to success, and hard work can help you accomplish anything.?
? Vince Lombardi

Vince Lombardi was one of the greatest NFL football coaches of all time, and some might say “THE greatest”.? Lombardi had such an impact on the NFL that the Super Bowl trophy is named in his honor. According to Wikipedia, Lombardi never had a losing season as a head coach in the NFL – a job he held for over a decade.

Lombardi played baseball and basketball in school, but never amounted to much in those areas due to the fact that he had poor eyesight and was, by most accounts, a sub par athlete.? Having tried and failed at several different types of work, he finally got his first coaching job, as assistant football coach at a Catholic High School in 1939, and finally, in 1954 – 15 years later – he started his career with the NFL, and went on to be the most successful NFL coach in history.

How did this man, who obviously was not born with a talent for athletics, become such a grand success in the NFL?? By living and working under the guidance of one very important truth:

Success Comes From Hard Work

You see, Vince Lombardi knew and understood that success is the product of attitude and hard work.?? It doesn’t come via the luck of the draw, and it doesn’t come by sitting on your behind watching TV 24/7 or by wandering willy-nilly through life, doing whatever it is that pleases you.

In the Midwest where we live, farms and crop fields abound.? Many of these fields here in my state are owned and/or managed by members of the Asian community, and every time I drive by one of these fields, I see a group of hard-working folk picking weeds – by hand – and tending to the care of their fields, which often consist of several acres of land.?? These hard-working families spend hours and hours each day, weeding the farmland and caring for the crops, day in and day out.? No machinery, just their hard working hands.?? And as a reward for their hard work, they have food to feed their families and to sell at local markets.

Having a semi-large garden, I can tell you that weeding by hand is an enormous amount of work.? Our family puts in about 1-2 hours a day, and then we’re spent.? Done.? Back to the TV we go.

But not these guys.? They’re not afraid of hard work, and they don’t sit around and whine about what they have to do – they just put on their sun hats and their long-sleeved, lightweight shirts, and they do what needs to be done.? Period.

They are successful because of their hard work.?

Do you have dreams, goals or things you want out of life?? Are you unhappy with the way things are?? Do you want more money?? Less debt?? The freedom to work where you want to work – or to not work at all?

If so, what are you doing to get there?? Do you have a plan in place?? Are you doing the hard work it’s going to take to achieve those goals, or are you trading in your dreams for the instant gratification of today’s fleeting and not nearly as satisfying short-term rewards?? Was that dinner out, that trip to the amusement park or the movies worth giving up your dreams?? Or do you want something better out of life?

You can have your dreams – you really can.? You just need to make daily choices that will bring you closer to your dreams instead of pushing your dreams farther away.? You just need to work for your success.


Other than hard work, what have you found to being key to success in different areas of life? ?What do you do in order to not give into the temptation of throwing in the towel at times?


Photo courtesy of:?Free Digital Photos


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  1. Great post Laurie! This is spot on for sure. You can’t succeed without hard work. It doesn’t just happen. It takes time and effort. I love when people see others who are successful and don’t realize how much work they put into it.

    • Yeah, people often focus on the end result (the success) but don’t even stop to think about how much effort was put in to get there. Famous athletes are a perfect example of this. People see the $10 million contract but don’t see the full-time job of working to improve their performance for 10-20 years.

  2. John Schmoll says:

    Solid post Laurie! I love that Lombardi quote! So often we think that we can just rest on our laurels and all sorts of success will come our way. As we all know, life just doesn’t happen that way. It takes time, effort and a ton of hard work to be successful.

  3. I love Vince Lombardi quotes…I can read them all day! It really bothers me when people assume they can be successful without putting in the time and the hard work…then they often complain because they aren’t successful.

    • I know, Andrew!!! Ya just want to smack ’em one, you know? 🙂 Ironically, this wasn’t meant to be a Vince Lombardi based post when I started, but as I started to research him a bit more, I learned that he really was the epitome of success.

  4. I am SO happy that I am someone who is not afraid of hard work because it truly is the answer to success is just about all areas of our lives. It takes hard work to be financially a success, it takes hard work for a garden to be a success, it takes hard work for a marriage to be a success, hard work is pretty much the denominator for any success equation.

  5. I love this post! Thanks for writing it and sharing it with everyone. I would not be an attorney without a tremendous amount of hard work. And frankly, I’m just wired for hard work. I feel very lucky that it comes easily for me. I know so many people who just can’t get off the couch!

    • Law school is a perfect example of what can be accomplished with hard work, Natalie. So many people look up in awe to doctors and lawyers, and their income, etc., forgetting that that level of success came with a tremendous amount of hard work.

  6. Nicola says:

    Great post! It’s true – I think people, especially younger people, think that success is being in the right place at the right time, not the hard work that actually goes on behind it.

  7. This is so true. A lot of people think that successful people are just lucky because they invented something or are smarter than most or have more talent, but they don’t realize how much work it takes to be successful.

    Even if you want to play a sport for a living, you still have to work extremely hard to be able to make it into the elite group. Successful people are not lucky, they create their own luck by working hard.

  8. Sometimes stepping back and taking a break from it helps me keep going. Even people who work hard need to take breaks to help them look at the situation/problem in a different way if something isn’t working the first time.

    I find patience is also key, but unfortunately I am not the most patient person in the world. Lol. But I think I make up for it with my determination and persistence.

    • Taking a break is a vital part of success for those who choose to work hard to reach their goals. Several times it’s been during those breaks when I’ve gotten a new revelation about how to reach success or achieve my goals. Great tip!

  9. Marius says:

    The biggest enemy of hard work is procrastinating, and I am a natural. I have found that the best way to combat it is to live 5 minutes at a time. To break a task into ‘pieces’ and to start there doubled my productivity.

    • Awesome tip, Marius!! I use that method of reaching my goals when I’m feeling overwhelmed. I make a list of what I have to do, and then I say “What one thing can I do today to work toward my goal?” Even if it’s just a 1, 2 or 5 minute task, I know I am going in the right direction.

  10. I love that quote! It’s so true that hard work = success. Unless you’re incredibly lucky, that’s the only way to become successful.

  11. That Vince Lombardi quote is great. Hard work always pays off but I find working smart is also important to achieving success. You must understand when your effort will pay off and when it will go unnoticed. This applies very well to your career. I’ve noticed that working hard at things that don’t matter will go unrecognized but working hard at things that matter to your boss will immediately be rewarded even if the result isn’t 100% perfect. Focus on the things that matter and then work hard on them.

  12. Kim says:

    I didn’t know Vince Lombardi had poor eyesight! It is so much easier to blame your situation on luck instead of accepting responsibility and getting your butt in gear.

  13. Michelle says:

    I think that all of the different visuals that I use (debt tracker, pie charts, etc.) really help to keep motivated when paying off my debt. Just watching that tracker keeps me focused and keeps me determined to pay off my debts.

  14. Isn’t it a combination of hard work, picking the right work and dumb luck?

    I hear Presidential speeches about hard work. If I go in my back yard and dig a huge hole and then fill it in each day, I worked really hard. Probably harder than 95% of people.

    But it wasn’t the right work. If I work super extra hard at McDonald’s and clean the floors until they shine, I will not be paid more even though I worked really hard.

    Work smart, pick smart careers/jobs, if you do those and have a little luck sprinkled in, you will do great.

  15. Awesome post, Laurie! Sometimes you can work so hard and not see success for a long time. It takes faith to know it will come. For me, I’ve been trudging along for a while and finally seeing results. I love it!

    • You are a perfect example, Melanie, of what I’m talking about!! I remember you, a few months ago, feeling stagnant as you tried to increase your side-hustle income, and then, with a lot of hard work and persistence, boom! Things took off. Awesome. 🙂

  16. I completely agree with this post. I work really hard at any job that I have and I quickly get recognized as a top performer. More and more I’ve been seeing younger people at work that are not happy with their situation, believing that they deserve more but don’t do the necessary work to back it up. The easiest way to get ahead is to actually work harder than other people. This shouldn’t be rocket science.

  17. Hard work is very important. So is getting out and networking. The more people you know and interact with, the greater the chance of more opportunities come your way.

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