Opportune Success

Posted on 17-Nov-2014

Written by Junior Adriel Chan of 10th Kuala Lumpur Company

Published November 17th, 2014

Success is something all of us strive for, though few have gained it. Yet when some fortunate people stumble on the road towards it, most do not even know that they have done so.

In this world, it may seem to be the case that all of us start almost equal. Yet, that is not true, for some have advantages that others don't. A boy attended a school that has a computer with a super hard chess game. He gets obsessed with beating it and spends every spare time he has trying to do so, meanwhile learns all the nifty tricks the computer has under its sleeve. Always losing again the computer, he spends more and more time on it, and eventually becomes an expert at chess.

After graduating from that school, he plays a game of chess with his father and crushes him. His father, recognising his talent, forced him to play it more often. Eventually, he [the boy] became a master player. There are three advantages here: first, the boy was fortunate to attend a school that had a computer chess program. Second, the boy was old enough to understand how to play the game, and he started young and got a head start. Three, He had parents that could see his talent. These are but a few of the advantages that some people are given, the others wont be mentioned here and it's time to move on.              

Whatever one wants to excel at, it must be practiced for 10,000 hours. It may sound very simple, but actually it's not. Ten thousand hours is not a short time, for if one puts one cent into a piggy bank every second, one will have 3,6000,000 cents, which equals to RM 18,000,000! That is enough to buy fourteen Ferrari Cars!

Some people join The Boys' Brigade as Juniors. These people start learning drill at 7 - 8 years old. Although they may only drill for 45 minutes a week, by the time they transition to the Senior Section, they will have drilled for over 225 hours! This extra practice could make them only slightly better than the rest of their squad, but it will make them the perfect choice for a drill team. Then the drill team is sent for a competition, requiring many more hours of preparation than a brigadier that joins as a senior would normally have. That early entry into BB gave him extra hours of practice that put him ahead of the rest. The same happens in our society in general.

I have seen amazingly talented people play songs on many instruments. Some of these people manage to perfect songs that others three times older have struggled to play. These people do not just get this done overnight, neither is it always glamorous. Such people are usually pushed very hard, forced to give up what little free time they have, all sorts of things that end up with the child becoming very skilled but depressed.

There is no such thing as a free lunch, which means everything has a price to pay. The price to follow Jesus is ones life, while the cost for joining Boys Brigade is time, even eating a free meal costs the time for waiting for the food to be prepared. There is a price that has to be paid for success.

Yet at the same time, success is as much a work of oneself as a work of opportunities given. A chess player doesn't just become good overnight, neither does a driller or a violinist. Success requires opportunity.


Page Created: 17th November 2014
Last Updated: 17th November 2014