“There is no such thing as a ‘self-made’ man. We are made up of thousands of others. Everyone who has ever done a kind deed for us, or spoken one word of encouragement to us, has entered into the make-up of our character and of our thoughts, as well as our success.”
This quote, by the American historian George Burton Adams, is reminiscent of another quote probably half a century later by George Shinn. Besides sharing the same first name, both men had a similar train of thought.
According to Shinn, “There is no such thing as a self-made man. You will reach your goals only with the help of others.” However, Adams had elaborated on this statement during his lifetime. In his quote, we can appreciate the reason why there’s no such thing as a self-made man or woman.
Basically, we are who we are through a combination of nature and nurture. When we’re our true authentic selves, we show our innate personality traits as well as traits influenced by the people and circumstances around us. Therefore, we should recognize all the people who’ve shaped our path in some way or another. They’ve shaped our character, thoughts, and success.
What both Adams and Shinn are saying is that no one arrives where they want to be in life with no one to thank. Each of our successes are inextricably linked.
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