Success is like an Iceberg

Success is like an Iceberg

Now you may be thinking ‘what a strange comparison...’ Let me explain!

Icebergs are extremely large in size – the largest Iceberg on record currently is Iceberg B – 15, which is larger than the whole island of Jamaica and twice the size of Luxemburg! So safe to say, it is a decent size. However, although Icebergs make for an impressive sight, 90% of the iceberg mass lies beneath water level. Therefore, although what is seen above water level is highly impressive, it is NOTHING in comparison to what lies just beneath the surface.

Thomas Jefferson stated: “I am a great believer in luck. The harder I work, the more luck I have.” ‘luck’ and success is more often than not a result of blood, sweat and tears – in simpler terms, it is a result of working hard.

What is it that really lies underneath the glamourous appearance of success? Let’s dive into that a little deeper….


We all know that persistence is given a LOT of credit in most success stories The fact they never gave up even when the ‘going got tough,’ is highly admirable. Steve Jobs eloquently highlights the importance of persistence in this quote:

“If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.”

Although at the tip of the iceberg it can often appear that for some, success occured as a stroke of ‘luck’. However, what cannot be seen is the blood, sweat and the tears that has gone into what has been achieved! Persistence is imperative in true success stories.


“I have never failed; I have just found 10,000 ways that don’t work” – Thomas Edison. Failure can either make or break you…if you allow failure to crush you, or allow it to dull your motivation, you will never succeed! However, if you view failure as a learning curve and choose to move forwards from it, you are creating character. That character is what ultimately creates a successful attitude.


Attitude is everything when it comes to being a success. If you don’t believe you have the capability to succeed, chances are…you won’t. If you only picture the negative possibilities or picture what could go wrong, you are limiting your potential! Putting up unnecessary stumbling blocks. Picture your success. Think positively! And make sure that your attitude is one of inspiration and motivation for those you interact with on a day-to-day basis.


What is usually not seen beneath the surface of success are the many sacrifices that have been made. Many have had to make sacrifices that perhaps others of us just aren’t willing to make. One of the biggest sacrifices of course being time.

Another thing that can give is social life, family time, even health! It is not an easy path to tread. Think about it, would you be willing to give 100% of yourself for an indefinite amount of time? With no real certainty that you will ever see the fruits of your labours. It is certainly a challenge, and that is where character comes in. You need to have a persistent character to endure through seemingly consistent failure and sacrifice.

Are you dedicated to this cause? Do you believe in it? Do you honestly and truly believe that what you are working towards is important? If not…you may struggle! Passion is a powerful thing. To be lucky enough to be both passionate about AND good at what you do is a powerful combination. My suggestion is do what you love and strive to build from there. Your success will feel oh so sweet if you truly are dedicated to your cause.

Hard Work

Work hard. I can’t even begin to stress that enough! As my parents always taught me; if you want something – you need to work for it…you need to earn it! My father would frequently remind me that “there is no such thing as a free lunch.” Anything worth having in this life, is going to take time and effort. Good things don’t just come to those who wait, but it comes to those that WORK HARD. Having a good work ethic is very important when it comes to being successful – you need to be driven and you need to know how to willingly give everything in order to make your vision a reality. So, work hard, but also…enjoy the journey J

Smart Work

Working hard is important, as was previously emphasised…however it is not everything! We need to work SMART as well as work hard.

Learn all you can about what you are doing. Learn around the subject – don’t stop striving to improve! Working smart means learning the best and most efficient way to accomplish the task in hand. Learn how to work Smarter as well as how to work harder.                                      


Discipline is essential on the road to success. To be disciplined you must have a vision- have a goal in mind for what it is you ideally want to accomplish. When we have a vision – we should also have steps in place that will lead us to accomplishing said vision. As we strive to walk through these steps we may come across different stumbling blocks that may test our commitment to our vision. Discipline may at times mean we are required to make sacrifices. But it is critcal to do all in our power to keep as balanced a life as possible.


As I am sure you can see, success is never an overnight feat. It takes time, sacrifice and a whole lot of effort. The keys of success: Persistence; attitude; hard AND smart work; dedication and discipline are not easy to master. However, once they have been mastered, they will make all the difference as you tread the path towards your goals.

What you see as an observer is always the very tip of the iceberg. We will see the perks and benefits that come as a result of success, and boy is it an attractive sight, however it is imperative to always remember what lies BENEATH the surface. As with an iceberg, what lies above the surface can be only 10% of the whole picture. The most impressive aspect of an iceberg is really the great mass that lies beneath the surface. And for me, the most impressive part of any success story is the great effort, dedication and sacrifice that has been given in such abundance to cause what was once just a vision, to become a fantastic reality. 

Leah Moy

Marketing Executive at CPI Selection

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