Inspiration from a Rhino: Five Tips For Success

Not long ago, a friend gave me a book to read called Rhinoceros Success. In it, author Scott Alexander encourages readers to think and act like a rhino in an effort to inspire you to charge forward in life, both personally and professionally:

“Think rhinoceros and act rhinoceros!…Positive thinking will get you nothing, unless you combine with charging. Writing out your goals is useless, unless you charge them down… Dreams are only dreams, unless you become a rhinoceros and charge at them!”

During my childhood visits to The Chaffee Zoo, I can recall the rhinoceros enclosure being my least favorite. He was big, dusty, stinky and prone to snorting in the direction of onlookers. But this book got me thinking that perhaps there were lessons to be learned from a two-and-a-half ton herbivore that can run 25 miles per hour.

Here’s a combination of thoughts from the book’s author, and me, to consider in your quest for success:

Be bigger than life – even if you aren’t big yet, your personality can make up for size, so start acting like a big success and soon you could be one

Grow a thick skin – it’s important to block out bad energy, and having a thick skin will ensure that naysayers and Negative Nellies can’t get you down

Focus on a single direction – it’s easy to be distracted or to try to be all things to all people, but a single horn that points you in a single direction will help you stay focused

Run fast in short spurts – set intermediate goals, power towards them, celebrate, and repeat

It’s ok to get a little muddy – your path might not be perfect, and there may be some puddles, but pay the mud no mind and just keep charging ahead

Coincidentally, shortly after reading this book, I found myself in front of a larger-than-life rhinoceros statue in front of The Musée d’Orsay in Paris so I just had to snag a snort-free snap.

Jane Olvera Quebe, President