Why “Pursuit of Excellence” Is A Reward In Itself?

Last updated on July 13, 2020

I wish to share with you a subject which is very close to my heart and that is “pursuit of excellence” in whatever we do in our lives. It’s my firm belief that anything great in life, whether it is to build a great enterprise with a team, or paint a great painting as an individual or to go beyond one’s physical boundaries, cannot happen unless the primary pursuit of the individual, organization or the team was to pursue excellence first and other goals later. Truly great achievements are born out of relentless work to do the best, a deep desire to produce something which is extremely good. It does not mean that we have lost sight of our goal in our zeal to be the best. We do have our eyes firmly focused on the goal but we are convinced in our hearts that if we pursue excellence, success is bound to be a natural byproduct of our efforts.

Trust me when we do this it makes the whole process of working on anything far more enjoyable. Let us look at it this way; the moment of victory or defeat in any endeavor is just that moment in time. Once the goal has been achieved that moment is in the past which was until a moment ago was in future. We have all the right to pause and savor the fruits of our labor, however, it is even more important to see how we have spent rest of the moments of this journey. When we are driven by desire to deliver the best, our fear of failing in our efforts greatly reduces because efforts become primary concern. As the fear disappears it is replaced by a new energy, joy and happiness in just doing the job to our best abilities. We are able to devote maximum of our energies in accomplishing the task at hand which greatly increases our chances of success. Our focus shifts to our own immediate efforts and the process rather than success or failure which is distant in future. Pursuing excellence in itself becomes our reward, where we reach or do not reach is not so important, that is just one moment in life.

Our work and the way we do our work must make us better human beings in order to bring us lasting joy and peace. Pursuit of excellence helps us to become better human beings. Once we try to be the best we gradually realize what people before us have achieved and how much does it take to even reach those levels let alone surpassing them. It allows us to see the world in right perspective. It brings humility. It enables us to recognize and respect greatness in others. One needs humility to learn anything new. We need to be humble to realize our own shortcomings and recognize great qualities of people around us in our teams. And the moment we accept these facts and start practicing them it automatically makes us a more receptive, more productive and more valuable team member. We become a source of encouragement and energy to people around us which helps to elevate the entire team.

On the other hand, it is important to appreciate the importance of enablers who help us in our pursuit of excellence. An organization which encourages us to give our best, a leader who inspires us through his personal example, a Guru who teaches us the right principles to be a decent human being are blessings for which we must be grateful. A grateful person complains less! A grateful person grabs tiniest opportunities rather than rue the hurdles or lack of opportunities. A true sense of gratitude allows us to single-mindedly devote our energies to our goal instead of letting them sap away due to fears and resentments. We are filled with gratitude for the opportunity given to us instead of being paralyzed by fear of failure. We are joyous in our actions rather than resenting the hard work.

It is not easy to pursue path of excellence. Great discipline is required to avoid reverting to old habits. A continuous effort is required each day to persevere with humility and gratitude. Like we can’t postpone today’s breathing to tomorrow or breathe today in advance for future, similarly our commitment to excellence needs to be renewed and pursued every single day. Such a pursuit has power to transform us from ordinary to extraordinary, from mundane to sublime, from mediocrity to excellence. We will be able to truly express our real being and discover beauty inside and outside us. A life enveloped with beauty, joy and peace! What more can one ask?