Hunger and a Burning Desire
Desire is the starting point of all achievement, not a hope, not a wish, but a keen pulsating desire which transcends everything. – Napoleon Hill
“To burn with desire and keep quiet about it is the greatest punishment we can bring on ourselves.” ― Federico García Lorca, Blood Wedding and Yerma
“Men go to far greater lengths to avoid what they fear than to obtain what they desire.”― Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code
“Those who restrain desire do so because theirs is weak enough to be restrained.”― William Blake, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell
“Desire makes life happen. Makes it matter. Makes everything worth it. Desire is life. Hunger to see the next sunrise or sunset, to touch the one you love, to try again. ‘Hell would be waking up and wanting nothing,’ he agrees.”― Karen Marie Moning, Shadowfever
The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential… these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence. – Confucius
I think anything is possible if you have the mindset and the will and desire to do it and put the time in. Roger Clemens
Desire is the key to motivation, but it’s determination and commitment to an unrelenting pursuit of your goal – a commitment to excellence – that will enable you to attain the success you seek. – Mario Andretti
The key to success is to focus our conscious mind on things we desire not things we fear. – Brian Tracy
Human behavior flows from three main sources: desire, emotion, and knowledge.- Plato
The size of your success is measured by the strength of your desire; the size of your dream; and how you handle disappointment along the way. – Robert Kiyosaki
Nothing great is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig. I answer you that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen. Epictetus
Behind the success and achievements of most successful individuals, families, communities or nations lies a deep hunger and burning desire. The next series of long form articles will deep dive and explore Napoleon’s Hill’s Think and Grow Rich book.
This book has been credited by many individuals for transforming their lives. The first chapter in the book touches on DESIRE a ‘Burning Desire’.
The modern form of Desire comes in various variations that you will hear and encounter: Hunger, Passion, Ambition, Lit and Fire. These are the most common words you will hear. Let’s then take a deep dive into the world of ‘Burning Desire’
What is Desire and Hunger?
Desire Meaning Desire Definition & Meaning – Merriam-Webster
1: to long or hope for: exhibit or feel desire for
knew that men still desired her
2 : to express a wish for: REQUEST
they desire an immediate answer
verb (used with object), de·sired, de·sir·ing.
to wish or long for; crave; want.
to express a wish to obtain; ask for; request:
The mayor desires your presence at the next meeting.
a longing or craving, as for something that brings satisfaction or enjoyment:
a desire for fame.
What drives Desire or Hunger?
There are four key drivers behind desire, ambition or hunger.
The adage goes necessity is the mother of invention. The majority of self-made millionaires, billionaires, famous sportsmen, athletes, artists, scientists were all driven by necessity to succeed.
Experiencing nights of real hunger and want propelled them to succeed, no matter what it took to get there. Some individuals turn to crime and some go through the hard road of education, jobs, entrepreneurship to get themselves to the top.
2. Wars and calamities that are existential in nature
These are other key drivers behind desire. The desire to live and make it through perilous and difficult times are great motivators for many individuals. Living through a war or natural calamity like a famine, hurricane or earthquake, can be a life changing experience.
Refugees and migrants surprisingly form some of the most successful communities in their adopted communities. If you study refugee communities and those who have survived very harrowing calamities, they have built in resilience and tenacity.
An example are the Vietnamese refugees who were displaced to the United States after the Vietnam war in the 1970’s. The majority of these refugees are leaders in their chosen fields. They have the purpose and reason to succeed as they had no safety nets to support them and the memory of what they went through propels them to succeed.
3. Love, Vengeance, Power and Status
Wars have been fought between nations and communities over love. The male species among all animals is driven by the desire to mate and propagate their offspring. Alpha status in the pack is a desired role among all male animals.
Many successful men and women have been driven by this urge to gain Alpha status and gain the attention and love of the most beautiful women or alpha males in the community. Power, celebrity and leadership status roles are a very strong driver for many individuals.
4. Self-Actualization and Legacy
Another key driver is legacy and self-actualization. This is another great motivator for many individuals. There are individuals who are driven by the need to leave their names behind for prosperity’s sake.
Nothing else matters to them but to leave a lasting legacy and to be known for generations to come. We have inventors, generals, politicians, artists, sports personalities who’s overall driving ambition is legacy.
The drive to win and rewrite history is what keeps them awake each and every night.
Examples of Burning Desire, Hunger and Ambition
Nelson Mandela (1918 – 2013) (Necessity)
Nelson Mandela was the first black president of South Africa. He left a legacy that will endure over time. He fought against and dismantled the discriminatory apartheid policy.
This policy was officially enacted in South Africa from 1948 to 1991, but had been in practice since 1828 with the pass laws in the Cape Colony. Nelson Mandela took it upon himself to fight this unfair policy and that became his burning desire and life’s purpose.
He spent 27 YEARS in jail to fulfill this burning desire. He became the symbol of the fight against apartheid and reaped his due reward. That is the price he was willing to pay to achieve that target.
John D Rockefeller (1839 – 1937) - (Necessity)
John D Rockefeller was one of the greatest business magnates America ever had, and is still considered the richest individual in modern history, when we account for inflation. He grew up in a dysfunctional household with a way ward father who was a con artist. He was the second of six children.
His father eventually abandoned the family and the young Rockefeller had to learn to fend for himself and his mother and siblings early on in life. This early upbringing had a direct effect on his ambition and desire to create material wealth for his family.
He studied book keeping and got a job as a book keeper at the age of 16 years. He got exposed to the Transportation industry early in life. After this he set out on his own and joined the retail industry and run a store with partners.
His diligence and thrift served him well and the store thrived during the American Civil War. He then ventured into the oil industry as an Oil Refiner. His key values of thrift and reinvesting profits served him well. He grew the company into the world’s largest refiner.
He had the foresight gained from his stint in the transportation industry to realize that oil would play a vital part in serving the energy needs of the world. His simple burning desire to provide for his immediate family led him to the greatest heights in the business world.
Kobe Bryant (1978 – 2020) - (Legacy)
Kobe Bryant was an American National Basket Ball Association (NBA) player recognized for his exceptional skill and talent. He spent his entire 20-year career at the Los Angeles Lakers. He won 5 NBA championships with the team and was voted as the 2008 Most Valuable Player.
He was simply dedicated to excellence and was relentless. His work ethic was fearsome. He was obsessed with winning and coined the term “Mamba Mentality”.
There was no ‘9 to 5’ work maxim for him. He literally worked day and night. He was dedicated to getting to the top of the game.
His burning desire was simply to be among the greatest players of all time in the National Basketball Association league and he made it. He became one of the GOAT’s.
Michael Jackson (1958 – 2009) -(Legacy)
Michael Jackson is hailed as the ‘King of Pop’. He was voted the most successful entertainer of all time by the Guinness Book of World Records. He is recognized as one of the greatest music artistes of all time. He sold over 400 million records and his music crossed racial boundaries.
He was born the eighth of ten children and his music career begun at a tender age. He joined his brothers the ‘Jackson 5’ at the tender age of six years. In time he eclipsed his brothers and he was recognized as a music prodigy
Over time he become world acclaimed and he owned the 80’s music scene. He popularized dancing styles like the ‘moon walk’ as well as the ‘robot’. He was the first great cross over artist and was recognized as a legend.
To this day and age children still strive to do the ‘moonwalk dance’. His key aspiration was legacy and been recognized as the greatest of all time. This is an accolade he achieved.
Pep Guardiola (1971 to date) – Legacy
Pep Guardiola is the current football- soccer manager of the famous football club Manchester City in England. He has already cemented his name in the record books as the most successful soccer manager of all time.
Guardiola is the only manager to win the continental treble twice, the youngest to win the UEFA Champions League, and he also holds the records for the most consecutive league games won in La Liga, the Bundesliga, and the Premier League. He is considered to be one of the greatest managers of all time.
Guardiola is a Spanish national and begun his playing career at Barcelona Football club under one of the greatest managers, Johan Cruyff and a Barcelona, Netherlands footballing legend. He was part of a winning team nicknamed the ‘Dream Team’ that won it’s first European Cup in 1992 and four successive Spanish League Titles from the year 1991 to 1994.
Pep resigned as an active player in the year 2000. His managerial career begun in earnest in 2007 managing the Team B of Barcelona. He took over the senior team in the Year 2008 and the rest is history.
He finished the 2009 season with a record 6 trophies. The Spanish League, Copa del Rey, Champions League, Spanish Super Cup, European Super Cup and Club World Cup, becoming the first manager in history to do so
He led Barcelona to a treble win and became the youngest manager to win the European Champions League. He was named FIFA World Coach of the Year 2011. This is what a burning desire to be the greatest can achieve.
This is the will to be the greatest ever. That burning desire to achieve the greatest and leave nothing to chance.
Burning Desire is not vague but crystal clear
When you are in love there is nothing vague or wish washy about that feeling. It’s a definite feeling. Desire should also be definite with no ambiguity about it. We have heard the phrase burning the bridges. There is no contingency plan, you are either in or not. It’s a binary choice YES or NO.
You can’t seat on the fence it’s a mandatory MUST DO goal or activity. That’s why when we have existential events we perform beyond the extraordinary. We do what we thought was impossible or not achievable.
This is the importance of been clear about your purpose and goals. The best movies always have a hero who is clear about their goals and purpose. The ‘Rocky’, ‘Rambo’ movies by Sylvester Stallone had simple basic script plots but were definite about the goals. The rescue missions.
Families, Organizations, Communities, societies or individuals with clear goals and a purpose are the ones that make it over the long run. Any nation or organization that has existed over 2000 years has a clear mission and goal.
What is your overall purpose and what keeps you awake? Think about this clearly. For a parent it might be providing the best for their kids. For an organization becoming the market leader. For a sports team it might be winning the league.
Think about what makes you alive and makes your eyes burn with drive and hunger. If you know how to harness desire you will go further than you ever imagined.
Think and Grow Rich- Napoleon Hill
Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable – Tim S Grover and Shari Wenk