When the United States of America decided it was time to put man on the moon, a meeting was called. How typical. The President at the time was John F. Kennedy, and through his Vice President, Lyndon Johnson, he asked a group of NASA engineers, think-tanks, CIA and NSA experts on what it would take to beat Soviet Union on the race to the moon.
You see, most Americans had the perception that the United States was losing the Space Race with the Soviet Union, which had successfully launched the first artificial satellite, Sputnik, almost four years earlier. The perception deepened when in April 1961, Russian cosmonaut Yuru Gagarin became the first man in space before the U.S. could launch its first Project Mecury astronaut. So yeah, the meeting called for by the President was top-secret and described as being of utmost importance to national security.
Many of the people gathered at the table began making suggestions, theoretical assumptions, educated guesses and scientific based analysis.
The answer Mr. President got from the head of the space program was quite simple yet profound: “The will to do”. The entire room went silent. All eyes were turned to the speaker. He had the pedigree and the position to give a much better “educated opinion”. But his suggestion was simple, “The will to do”.
The President needed no further convincing of what was required. Convinced of the political need to make an achievement which would decisively demonstrate America’s greatness, Kennedy stood before Congress on May 25, 1961, and proposed that “this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to the Earth.” And they did!
When it boils down to it, that’s all it really takes. The will to do whatever is necessary per time. To do the needful. To go beyond what’s expected and go the extra mile. It’s what seperates winners from losers. The casual from the committed. The will to do, whatever it takes.
Some call it determination. Others call it grit. Whatever it is, realize that the ultimate measure of your ambitions (whatever that may be) will be the sacrifice you’re willing to make to attain it. Winning is always a choice.
What have you committed to lately?