You’re Closer to Greatness Than You Realize (With Quotes from Great Men and Women)

When you’ve got a big heart and big dreams, then you want to leave a big impact on your world. Like those great men and women, you too want to touch the lives of many people. You feel like you have a lot to offer the world, and will be dissatisfied with anything less. However, we do not always recognize the opportunities we have, and may end up not fulfilling our potentials.

George Bernard Shaw wrote: “Just do what must be done. This may not be happiness, but it is greatness”. This does not in anyway mean that we exchange happiness for greatness, but rather, that we do the best we can in every situation, even when it doesn’t bring immediate happiness. No matter your position, or your status in life, you’ll find all around you ways to make a difference. Most of the time, we tend to believe that we need more resources to do this. But, when you do the right thing with the little resources, you set yourself up for greatness.

Service unto others is arguably the most important ingredient of greatness. When you do this wholeheartedly, then you’ve done the deed of great people. Most times, we fail to consider the possibilities of leaving huge impacts on people on the society. We complain about our jobs and the troubles of every day life when, in actual fact, these are opportunities to be of service to others. This point is iterated in this Marianne Williamson‘s quote: “Nothing liberates our greatness like the desire to help, the desire to serve”.

Most often, we tend to mistake sophistication for greatness. Whereas, several great persons attribute greatness to simplicity. As Ralph Waldo Emerson puts it, “nothing is more simple than greatness; indeed, to be simple is to be great”. So, it pays to put simplicity over complexity; humility over grandiosity.

Likewise, we shouldn’t mistake greatness for fame, and spend our whole life pursuing the wrong thing. Martin Luther King Jr said: “not everybody can be famous but everybody can be great, because greatness is determined by service”. This brings us back to service. And we see again, how paramount it is to put others first in all our quest.

All you need do is take responsibility wherever you feel there’s need for action. According to Winston Churchill, “the price of greatness is responsibility”.

If you’ve got kindness inside you, then there’s greatness in you. For kindness will push you to help others. It will make you pay the price for greatness, and will make you stand out. Joseph B. Wirthlin is right when he said that: “kindness is the essence of greatness and the fundamental characteristic of the noblest men and women I have known”.

We’ll end on this note. Do you ever feel like giving up after failing? If so, always remember this quote from Oprah Winfrey: “Failure is another stepping stone to greatness”.

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