Why hope is not a strategy

It can sometimes be wiped away if the waves reach the shore.

“Luck is not a factor. Hope is not a strategy. Fear is not an option.”
 James Cameron (Film Director, Titanic)

I was reading Jimi Tewe’s book titled “Pillars of Career Sucess” when I came across what he described as a common saying: “Hope is not a strategy”. It might be common for Jimi Tewe, but not for me.  Those words struck me really so hard.

I ran a check online to know whom the quote is attributed to. Interestingly, as at when writing this article, I still don’t know the originator of the deep phrase.

Rick Page, used the phrase as his book title in 2001; Ted Gee followed suit in 2008 but before him, James Cameron had also mentioned it in an interview back in 2004.  However, the man that popular opinions suggested might be responsible for the quote is the legendary coach, Vince Lombardi.

It won’t be a surprise if I later found out that Vince Lombardi is the originator of the quote. In his lifetime, he earned himself respect with his genius and tactical coaching methodology that saw him record great things in the American Football world, so that, after his demise, NFL’s super bowl trophy was named after him. What could have been the reason behind his great success? Maybe, his understanding of the fact that “Hope is not a strategy”.

Hoping for something, to me, is desiring something. Is it a strategy? No.

At a conference I attended, the facilitator said the simple definition of strategy is simply “how we want to get our goal, what we desire.”

You don’t leave your home as a husband and expect your wife will know what you wish to eat in the night is Pizza. A simple “honey, I would love to have pizza tonight” is a request strategy that will bring your night dream to reality.

When we pray and affirm that we want a good future, when we are on the swing and fantasising about a glorious future, let us remember that it’s good to hope that all lines will fall in place, but a wise man will clear off the ground and draw the shape he wants the line to fit in.


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