Look at this plant.
That tiny little plant, growing out between two blocks of retaining wall blocks. We've been meaning to pluck it out any time.
But it doesn't know that. It just keeps growing. The root has to be nearly a foot long to get to soil.
That's what nature does. It keeps trying. It throws things on the wall to see what sticks. It keeps trying to grow different things. Many of them die what with one thing or another. Or another. Many others. But as long as a few live and breed, nature keeps trying.
Then there's humans. Mostly a blight on the landscape now. So many have so much potential, and they use so little of it. Many of the ones that try give up at the first bit of adversity.
The funny thing is that achieving a moderate degree of success isn't terribly difficult.
Show up on time, ready to work.
Then do the work, whatever it is.
That's half the battle, right there. I've trained lots of people to do various tasks, and I'd far rather train someone with little or no background but was willing to dig in, than someone who already knew lots of it but didn't want to learn more.
The other half is doing it well, better than most of the people around you if you want to get ahead of them. If you want to be in the NHL, you've got a struggle. Lots of competition and at that level the differences in skill aren't big, but they are big enough to be differentiators.
But for most jobs, doing the work well is enough to get ahead. Yes, there are setbacks sometimes. People get laid off. Budgets get cut. Company priorities change. You might find yourself hunting for your next job unexpectedly. So what? Even job hunting, those rules apply. Show up, do the work, which is to find your next situation.
You don't have to be smarter than the people around you. Lots of successful people say they aren't any smarter than other people, they just worked harder. They found a place to apply their talents, and then did it. Day in, day out. Whatever it is.
Think of that little plant. It keeps growing.