It’s a very simple question at first blush, but it may be THE question in determining how far you’ll go in your career … and your life.

If you’ve ever been back to a high school reunion, there is always that one person who “made it big.” He or she may have done something in business, science, social work, or education – but there is always someone that appears to have magically navigated his or her career (and life). These individuals may not all be “wealthy” depending on their chosen pursuits, but their lives are rich with challenges they have conquered, mountains they have climbed, and positive changes they have been able to successfully lead.

Are You A Star?

Are you on a path to be a standout? Are you a STAR in the making? Or are you destined for middle management or mired in mediocrity? If you’re not on a road to greatness, perhaps it’s time to change your approach – and the results that flow from it.

Why You May Not Be At the Top

In most cases, you’ll find that you’ve set goals that are too easily achievable – or you’ve set no goals at all. You haven’t truly challenged yourself to achieve your true potential. You haven’t reached for the stars.
Why not?

Candidly, you may or may not have the heart and the passion to pursue greatness. Notice that I didn’t say “talent.” Do you have the heart and passion to be in that top 1% in your career and/or your life?
If you do, here’s your next step.

How to Get to the Top!

Write down 10 goals for yourself for the next 10 years. They can be both professional and personal – in fact they should be, but make least seven of them professional goals.
That was easy. Now for the hard part.

Ask three professional associates to “supersize” them. Ask them how the goals on that paper would be different for the person who authored them was truly committed to being a superstar – to being in the top 1% at everything they did. What could that person accomplish in the next 10 years?
Gather their input and reflect on it. Think hard about it.

Then decide what you’re willing to commit to, craft a plan to get there, and make the decision to think bigger than you ever have before. Make the commitment to your new “supersized” goals, and DO THE WORK to make the words on those page realities in your life.

You’ll think bigger. You’ll perform better. And, even if you don’t quite reach the stars, you’ll go a lot farther than you ever would have otherwise – and there’s nothing wrong with ending up in the top 5% in your field as a worst case scenario.

Patrick O’Brien Bio

Patrick O’Brien is a highly acclaimed entrepreneur and business leader who is also the author of Making College Count which is one of the top college success books on the market. For more information on Pat O’Brien’s work or his book click here Making College Count!