It is common to see the following quote:
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Lao-tzu.
It is good wisdom that tells us quite a few things:
- We must get started to accomplish great things.
- We must not despise the small beginning.
- Don’t procrastinate anymore.
We have a similar one from B. Franklin “A good start is the halfway to success”.
A search for the source of the original quote leads us to the “Dao De Jing” of Lao Zi Chapter 64. I discover that the above quote of Lao-Zi is only translated half-way. In context, Lao Zi tells us not only about starting but also continuing the journey until completion. Furthermore, the short Chapter 64 also tells us much about how to have great success. So here is the mind-map of my learning and translation of Chapter 64. I titled it “Seven Easy Steps to Great Success”.
If you want to discover the secret of easy (stress free effort) and long-lasting success, then you must read Lao Zi. See The True Teaching of Lao Zi’s Dao De Jing in 1 Minute.
Here is the 7 Steps mind-map:
- Steve Jobs’ begin with the ambition to make a dent in the world for the better.
- “Think Different” is the Apple tagline. IBM started with “Think” but Apple change it to make a “Different”!
- Some people complained that Steve Jobs is a tyrant. They fails to understand that excellence comes from sweating out the details – be prudent and careful from beginning to end. LaoZi tells us that there is no other way. Most people are destroyed by their initial successes.
- Never give up half-way, especially not when success is near.
- Steve Jobs said that Death is the best invention. Facing and reflecting on Death everyday give clarity to life. Never violate the natural principles of life. Flow with and adapt to them.
- Don’t just dream or talk about your dream. Take the step to realize your dream. Be bold. Be passionate. Follow your heart and live out your dream.
- Do it at the right time and situation when it is easy. Steve Jobs said that the war on PC was over and Microsoft had won. He said he will wait for the next big thing. He actually create the next big things by following his “Be Different” mantra.
May be you are as surprised as I have been. I started with Lao Zi and ended with Steve Jobs! The Ancient Chinese Wisdom is as powerful as for today!
Lim Liat (c) 14 Oct 2011.