Do you believe in your own Dream?
All great things start as a dream. We all need to dream before the dream can come true and most importantly, we all need to work for it. Can you imagine what the world we live in today would be without dreams? Every day, life is so much better because someone had a dream they acted on.
The world needs dreamers
The big question is, why bother with your dream? Aren’t there enough ideas and initiatives out there already? Why encourage more dreaming? There are so many reasons why dreaming is essential and why you need to hold on to your dream until it takes flight. Do you realise that without dreamers, we would have no electric light? Thomas Edison dreamed of a lamp that could be powered by electricity. He proceeded to put his dream into action and despite more than 10,000 failures, eventually made light in a completely new way. Do you also realise that without dreamers, we would be stuck traveling by rail, road, and sea? The Wright brothers dreamed of a machine that would fly through the air. They experienced incredible opposition to their crazy idea but because of their stubborn resolve to get off the ground, did in fact do so. Do you also realise that without dreamers, we would be stuck using wires to communicate with each other? Marconi dreamed of a system where we could harness the intangible force of ether to transmit sound through the air instead of wires. Some reports suggest he might have been labelled insane by his friends, but he pressed on and proved them all wrong. Without dreamers, there would be a void of innovation and significant change in the world.
Are you ready to challenge the status quo?
Challenging the status quo is a mind-set shift. When you challenge the status quo, it means that you identify new and better ways of doing things. It also means that you add value, and that’s the very basis for being successful. Challenging the status quo is a mind-set shift which you can bring about by being conscious about how things operate today – and by proposing a new and better way of doing things. One of the best ways of bringing about this mind-set shift is to regularly take a step back and ask a set of insightful questions. Set time aside in your diary and allow yourself to get away from your desk for 30 to 60 minutes. Go to a place where you feel inspired and where you will not be disturbed. Take a “balcony” view and observe it from afar. What is working well and what is not working so well? How could you run it in a more successful and effective manner?
See things better than they are.
Be inspired and imagine what the future would look like if you made use of more simplified processes, new and better technology, were able to build a highly motivated team, had better relationships with your customers, and if you were able to improve the way they do business.
Don’t just think better… think differently
Keep in mind that even if you don’t see an opportunity for massive disruption in your existing or desired space, you can still create a competitive advantage through minor disruption. How can you become more disruptive and challenge the status quo in your industry? Begin with asking why. Asking why repeatedly will lead you to a reason for an action. If the “why” is weak, you are onto something. Searching outside of your industry or even outside of your country offers insight into how others are thinking differently about the same challenges.
Be bold and brave.
To make a difference, to have an impact, and to become great we must do the unorthodox thing. To move from mediocrity to greatness, we must venture out. To build something substantial, we must take a strong stand. To create something meaningful, we must create significance. Nothing great is ever achieved by doing things the way they have always been done. To challenge the status quo, we must take one fearless choice at a time, one brave decision at a time, one courageous action at a time. These choices, decisions, and actions transform challenges into exploration, risk into reward, and fear into determination. Start by asking yourself: What needs to be challenged? What needs to be improved? What is the greatest risk? What can I expect? What can I learn? When we challenge the status quo, we test our skills and we challenge ourselves. The gift of life is to make a difference, and the call of leadership is to say this is not good enough. We have the choice to make things better. When we challenge the status quo, we believe that our abilities will be able to make a difference. What action will you take to challenge the status quo?
Believe that you can do it
Self-belief is paramount to every success. You need to first believe in yourself to get somewhere. If you don’t have self-confidence, who is going to believe in you? If you have often experienced low self-belief, look back at the times when you achieved something, regardless of how big or small it was. From there, build up your confidence and leverage it as you pursue your goals. As you begin to see results, your confidence will increase over time, which will create an upward spiralling effect.
Build concrete strategy and plans.
Every dream that develops into a goal needs a proper strategy and plan for it to come to life. Many people fail in their goals because they fail to follow-through with planning. The bigger your goals, the more important that you invest proper time in building your plan. Once you have set your goals, you need to work really hard. With every success, comes hard work. Without hard work, you cannot achieve results. People who try to find the easy way out are short changing themselves if they think they can achieve excellence without putting in hard work. If you observe around you, the people who seek out ‘get-rich-quick’ methods are also the very people who do not achieve much in their lives. Hard work is the universal quality that will pay off in the long-term. Once you invest the due time and effort, the results will start coming in. As you invest your time and effort, it is important to focus your energy in the few key drivers of success which will lead you to the results you want. This way, you will utilize your efforts more effectively, which can be subsequently channelled into more value-added activities.