Your strategy, choices, and actions change the deeper you get in your pursuit. Working on your goals will change you. Being exposed more and more to whatever is in the core of your industry, will influence what you do and how you think. It can change how you continue with that pursuit.
3 years ago, you started on your journey to becoming a chef. You couldn’t tell the difference between parsley and cilantro. But today, after making all sorts of dishes, your biggest concern is figuring out how to make the perfect souffle.
This is the reality lived by those who proactively pursue a goal. Who intentionally spend their time working on the same project or try to learn some skill… day after day after day.
But to the outside world… meaning the people observing these dreamers, it can sometimes be difficult to see that there is actual change happening. That the person who has been sitting on that computer year after year, talking about building apps or whatever, is actually growing. Changing.
I will confess, I was never comfortable talking about business when I was first starting out. I knew very little about the whole thing. All that I was sure about… was that I wanted to have and run one.
Getting negative feedback or being made fun of about my decision to do so was something I really didn’t need from anyone I knew or didn’t know. I had just exited a journey down a career path that I was sure was not meant for me. The last thing I needed was someone telling me that I had lost my mind as I desperately tried to figure out my future.
Businesses can be hard things to get into. Especially when you have no experience to draw from. No one to mentor or coach you. And when the people in your closest circle… don’t own any.
In the beginning, you tend to make a lot of embarrassing mistakes. You tend to set and work on the wrong (or not important) goals. People who can sense your lack of experience, instead of giving you guidance… may decide to exploit you.
In short… it’s tough.
But again, it’s mostly because you are just getting started.
If you manage to persist and build up the courage to keep figuring out the rollercoaster life that comes with running a business… you will be rewarded with something very important.
A version upgrade.
The old beginner operating system you had initially will be replaced by a better one. The knowledge and experience you gained during your time as a beginner, will be useful in helping you get even further in your pursuit.
It’s not rocket science. The more you do… the more you become.
Knowledge is one benefit. That you are now more informed. You know what works and what doesn’t.
But it doesn’t end there.
You establish important relationships… with the right suppliers… the right lenders… the right clients… etc.
You create a body of work. A portfolio of projects.
You have an impact on individuals or communities based on how you served them over the years.
This is why, as I grow older in my roles… I get more confident. I see with my own eyes, the impact of what I am doing.
Am I where I need to be in terms of my goals?
But I am on the right path. And I am able to tell that I’m on the right path… as opposed to those that have not spent a single hour… on a journey similar to mine.
Do you understand?
I have always believed that one of the hardest things for a writer to do… is put the experience into words.
What you see when you look at a persistent dreamer… is not the same as what that dreamer has experienced up to that point.
Stephen Pressfield said it best in his book The War of Art: “It was one thing to study war and another to live the warrior’s life”.
I learned early in life that it is a mistake to think that you understand how to succeed or fail at a goal that you never spent enough time proactively working on.
Beginners and passive observers make this mistake a lot. Making inexperienced claims that there are certain industries that are more financially rewarding to pursue compared to others.
Coming up with ideas of products, services, or businesses that they believe will succeed, when they have never had to manage a staff of people, come up with financial projections that would attract investors, create an efficient customer support structure if their product/service actually sold over hundreds of copies…
There is so much more to finding success than what generally meets the eye or mind.
Luck is a strategy used by people who believe their ticket to success is by playing the lottery. You do some action. You either win or you lose… depending on how the stars are aligned.
Strategic planning and execution based on accumulated experience are how many, still-standing, businesses have found success.
The product/idea isn’t the one and only thing that will determine whether you will win or lose.
There are so many intertwined processes that go into creating success.
Technical skills, established relationships a portfolio of work (or past experience)… all play a significant role in doing things such as:
The list goes on and on.
By the way… replace the word business with a dream if you like.
Because many businesses are their owner’s dreams’ (I hope my apostrophe game is on point).
In fact, why wouldn’t you want to run your dream as a business? This is something I will talk about in a later post.
Anyway… my point is that there is a clear and unappreciated advantage to proactively working on your goals… over a long period of time.
The wealth of knowledge and experience you gain is the key to helping you get closer to the goal you seek.
You must treat yourself as a student as you step into the life of going after your goals. You must not think that your intelligence, or lack thereof, is what will get you head or prevent you from realizing your dream.
Instead, you should focus on learning more. Doing more. Seeking the guidance of those that have gone further than you in what you are pursuing. We live in an age where it is much easier to get access to such accumulated knowledge.
Buy their books. Read their blog posts. Listen to their podcasts. Join their webinar. Send them a tweet. Meet them in person.
Whatever is appropriate for them.
Learn and earn.
The more you do… the more you become.
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