"You can't build a reputation on what you're going to do."
Palestine Lodge No. 357, Detroit, MI
It's not an easy thing to build a reputation. It requires work. You have to do things, and you have to do the right things and make the right decisions more often than not. You can't sit around and wait for people to notice you, you have to get their attention through your actions. And the things that you do have to mean something. It won't happen right away. Sometimes a reputation is build on a lifetime of work. And sometimes the right action or the right decision isn't the popular decision.
But there is one thing I've noticed as I've researched famous Freemasons over the years. I've written about many virtuous men of good reputation, and in almost every case, being a famous man, or being a man of good report was never their primary goal--it was secondary. They didn't set out to be admired and respected. They set out on their life's path with a desire to accomplish something meaningful--often with nothing more than a lot of motivation and an impossible dream. Their reputation was built as they lived their lives and accomplished the things in their life that were important to them.