学习啦【英语美文欣赏】 编辑：韦彦 发布时间：2016-09-18
The Shadowland of Dreams
Many a young person tells me he wants to be a writer. I always encourage such people, but Ialso explain that there's a big difference between "being a writer" and writing. In most casesthese individuals are dreaming of wealth and fame, not the long hours alone at the typewriter. "You've got to want to write," I say to them, "not want to be a writer." The reality is that writingis a lonely, private and poor—paying affair. For every writer kissed by fortune, there arethousands more whose longing is never requited. Even those who succeed often know longperiods of neglect and poverty. I did. When I left a 20—year career in the Coast Guard tobecome a freelance writer, I had no prospects at all.
What I did have was a friend with whom I'd grown up in Henning, Tennessee. George found memy home —a cleaned—out storage room in the Greenwich Village apartment building where heworked as superintendent. It didn't even matter that it was cold and had no bathroom.Immediately I bought a used manual typewriter and felt like a genuine writer. After a year orso, however, I still hadn't received a break and began to doubt myself. It was so hard to sell astory that I barely made enough to eat. But I knew I wanted to write. I had dreamed about itfor years. I wasn't going to be one of those people who die wondering, "What if?" I would keepputting my dream to the test — even though it meant living with uncertainty and fear offailure. This is the Shadowland of hope, and anyone with a dream must learn to live there.
The Success Personality
Is there a "success personality"—some winning combination of qualities that leads almost inevitably to achievement? If so, exactly what is that secret success formula, and can anyone develop it?
At the Gallop Organization we recently focused in depth on success, probing the attitudes of 1500 prominent people selected at random from who's who in America. Our research finds out a number of qualities that occur regularly among top achievers. Here is one of the most important, that is common sense.
Common sense is the most prevailing quality possessed by our respondents. Seventy-nine percent award themselves a top score in this quality. And 61 percent say that common sense was very important in contributing to their success.
To most, common sense means the ability to present sound, practical judgments on everyday affairs. To do this, one has to sweep aside extra ideas and get right to the core of what matters. A Texas oil and gas businessman puts it this way: "The key ability for success is simplifying. In conduction of meeting and dealing with industry reducing a complex problem to the simplest term is highly important."
Is common sense a quality a person is born with, or can you do something to increase it? The oil man's answer is that common sense can definitely be developed. He attributes his to learning how to debate in school. Another way to increase your store of common sense is to observe it in others, learning from their—and your own—mistakes.
Besides common sense, there are many other factors that influence success: knowing your field, self-reliance, intelligence, the ability to get things done, leadership, creativity, relationships with others, and of course, luck. But common sense stands out. If you develop these qualities, you'll succeed. And you might even find yourself listed in who's who someday.
Encouragement Can Work Miracles
Someone said that encouragement is simply reminding a person of the "shoulders" he'sstanding on, the heritage he's been given. That's what happened when a young man, the sonof a star baseball player, was drafted by one of the minor-league teams. Hard as he tried, hisfirst season was disappointing, and by midseason he expected to be released any day.
The coaches were bewildered by his failure because he possessed all the characteristics of asuperb athlete, but he couldn't seem to incorporate those advantages into a coordinatedeffort. He seemed to have become disconnected from his potential.
His future seemed darkest one day when he had already struck out his first time at bat. Thenhe stepped up to the batter's box again and quickly ran up two strikes. The catcher called atime-out and ran to the pitcher's mound for a conference. While they were busy, the umpire,standing behind the plate, spoke casually to the boy.
Then play resumed, the next pitch was thrown — and the young man knocked it out of thepark. That was the turning point. From then on, he played the game with a new confidenceand power that quickly drew the attention of the parent team, and he was called up to themajors.
On the day he was leaving for the city, one of his coaches asked him what had caused such aturnaround. The young man replied that it was the encouraging remark the umpire had madethat day when his baseball career had seemed doomed.
"He told me I reminded him of all the times he had stood behind my dad in the batter's box,''the boy explained. "He said I was holding the bat just the way Dad had held it. And he told me,'I can see his genes in you; you have your father's arms.' After that, whenever I swung thebat, I just imagined I was using Dad's arms instead of my own."