“There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, persistence, and learning from failure.” – Colin Powell

Many people believe that successful people have had greater opportunities than others. I believe that opportunities are not a gift; they are created through hard work and dedication to accomplishing specific goals. Everyone’s definition of success is different, but it’s up to us to decide whether we will win or lose during the pursuit of our life goals.

During my training to become a Navy SEAL back in 2000, the instructors made it very clear that it was up to us whether we passed or failed. The guys that came there telling themselves they would give it a shot and see how it went were typically among the first to go. It was those who had the mental fortitude to never accept anything but success who made it. Those who would never let the thought of quitting enter their minds. As the last line of the Navy SEAL Creed says, “I will not fail.”

My business partner and I have faced many of the usual challenges during our path in building one of the fastest-growing companies in the country. Many times those obstacles seemed insurmountable, but by having the persistence to keep moving forward and the ability to adapt to any situation, we have realized that roadblocks usually aren’t as bad as they seem at the time. You have to be willing to fail in order to be successful.

No matter what the goals, people who aspire to achieve their own definition of success are usually never truly satisfied. Those that strive to be elite understand that their training is never complete and that they can always be improving themselves. Excellence isn’t about being perfect but rather about the constant and unwavering pursuit of perfection.

Success in combat, much like success in business, is about teamwork, sacrifice, adaptation, and maintaining a positive mental attitude despite chaotic situations unfolding around you. Leading a growing company is quite a blessing, but it hasn’t been without significant persistence and learning from failure.

Like Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “If you can’t fly you run, if you can’t run you walk, if you can’t walk you crawl, but no matter what, you keep moving forward.”