Two Secrets of Success: From A Very Special Lady

Way back in 1961 or ’62, I met a very special lady who taught me two secrets of success that I still remember today.

My husband and I had been married for about a year. Ron had just got out of the Navy and we had returned to his home town of Santa Cruz, California where he went back to the job he had as fireman on the Southern Pacific Railroad.

But he knew that wasn’t what he wanted for a life career, so he started working nights and taking classes at the local Cabrillo Jr College.

It was a new, small college back then and Ron was a member of the Student Council.  The college started a guest speaker program for the school and the community.  Before the appearance of each guest, the student council members with their spouse (if they had one), along with a few faculty members, had dinner with the speaker.

On this particular night when she walked into the room, although not particularly attractive and very old to the eyes of this nineteen-year-old, Eleanor Roosevelt appeared to be as dynamic as her photos.

As a young woman, not even old enough to vote yet and not particularly interested in politics, I didn’t realize how very special this lady was.  But today, over years later, I still remember some of what she said that night.  She shared her experiences and how she had learned that “no one can make you feel inferior except yourself”.

eleanor-rooseveltAs someone just starting a new marriage in a new state with a whole different life and future ahead of me, the second secret was just as important.  That night, Eleanor Roosevelt’s words made a difference in my life when she said, “the future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

I’ve remembered those secrets of success that I learned from this famous woman who I shared a dinner with just before she died.  Throughout her lifetime, she made never-to-be-forgotten impressions on many people and I was one of them.

What does this have to do with you today — sixty years later?   A lot!  I’m passing on these two secrets to you with the hopes that you, too, will remember them whenever you are scared to go on those sales calls, afraid to step out and take a chance with your business, become discouraged and want to quit, or just need a bit of inspiration.

During those times, just remember the words of Eleanor Roosevelt:

“No one can make you feel inferior except yourself.”

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

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