The Key to Success and Realization of Large Goals

In his three plays of Henry IV, parts One and Two and the play Henry V, Shakespeare paints the picture of an impetuous young man, Prince Hal. This young prince acts as many modern princes and princesses (of Hollywood and otherwise) do. He parties, loves the ladies and lives his young life, filling it with joyful debaucheries.

The plays chronicle Henry’s development into adulthood, his manhood and becoming King. Henry develops into a respectful ruler and victorious warrior. In Henry V, now going by the name King Henry, the King has to face his friends, who refuse to abide by his imposed orders. The king is faced with the issue “Do I enforce my law, which has a penalty of death or do I let my friends go, as they are my friends”? The young King makes the choice to sentence his beloved playmates of youth to hanging.

In that moment, we see the King. This is the King who would go on to conquer the French, overcoming terrific, terrible odds in the process. This King stood by his word, his principles and his law. This King was a disciplined warrior and it is this discipline that would save his thrown and expand his kingdom. In enforcing his rules, he earned the respect of his followers, who would later spill their blood upon the battlefield for the King they so admired, the King who inspired them.

What a great example of leadership. No special favors. Everyone is suffering as they slog their way towards battle upon foot. The good would have lost mass respect of the people who sacrificed their well-being and lives. From my perspective leadership, it was the only option, as you cannot lead people who do not respect you.

Sometimes we must make unpopular decisions as leaders and sometimes we hurt ourselves for the betterment of those we serve.

Want to inspire others to sacrifice and follow to help build your vision? The first necessary component will be effective leadership and a leader who is fair.

In the process of leadership, we want our students to both lead others and themselves. In order to lead oneself, one must have discipline. The discipline I speak of is nothing short of the discipline of a “marathon runner”. The marathon runner cannot afford to take a lot of time off. They must run nearly every day. More, marathon runners are long distance runners. They are in the race for the distance, not just a short sprint. If one is going to have a sustainable career in the arts, they are going to need to have the courage, determination and discipline to weather the innumerable storms and to preserver. After all, you must be in the game, in order to win–whatever their measure of success may be.

Discipline is a necessary component that will help our artists commit to whatever dreams they may have, have the self motivation to consistently show up (every day), to better themselves and teach themselves. When one is in a constant state of learning, one is consistently bettering themselves and growing. Most importantly, such discipline will give them the skills to consistently overcome obstacle after obstacle, increasing their chances of making a living from their own desires and making.

Jim Hart Director of Arts Entrepreneurship at SMU and is the founder of The International Theatre Academy Norway.

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