"I have always figured you take whatever talent and intelligence you have and with discipline and a willingness, if not determination, to expend a good amount of energy, you can accomplish some of the things you want, and maybe more, much more, than you ever expected or had a right to expect. I have seen colleagues with a relatively modest amount of intelligence, but with energy, discipline, and the willingness to take a chance, do a lot; perhaps this is where I fit. I have seen, as well, some exceptionally brilliant people lacking energy and drive, or being a perfectionist to a fault, fail to accomplish very much, if anything. And through the years I have seen a few people combine brilliance, energy, discipline, and risk-taking proclivities; they are as impressive as they are rare, but they are that thin margin at the top setting the pace. It is better to aspire to a bit of that pace and not measure yourself against the many who do not or who do not care to do so. I see life as basically fate dealing you a hand; it is up to you how you play it. I have seen those dealt a good hand—brains, money, family—and make little. Some others deftly played a poor hand to advantage and accomplished much."
William L. Fisher, from the Preface of Leaning Forward.