A lot of things have been changing in my life lately, as many of you can imagine with the personnel changes we’ve gone through the past couple of months – I’ll talk more about that in a coming post – but I was thinking this morning about an important facet – maybe THE most important facet of business or personal growth, and that is to never stop dreaming.
I have always wanted to own a restaurant. I think I have a mission to feed people or animals, or something because it comes up again and again. I feed the neighborhood cats at the country house, which my husband hates but it seems like the least I can do given there’s no one who really cares for them in any other way. I ran a vegetarian website for a few years, with the mission of someday owning a chain of veggie fast food places. But given I make little money as it all pretty much goes into this still-growing business, it hasn’t seemed anything near reality, just a future goal or hope, wish or dream that comes up now and then.
Until now. My new business partners and I are actually talking about getting involved with some different companies, and one of them is a restaurant we would have a stake in and if we get involved, have a chance to really try to grow it into something much larger. Whether this happens or not, who knows – the talks are very early. But something that has long been a dream, is now a possibility with real conversations happening about it. And the next step from there is reality, and beyond that…. oy!! LOL!
I think about my #lilrookie, who you may or may not know is pro soccer player CJ Sapong. He came onto the team last year from the draft, and coming from a small school, I have no idea if he expected to play as much as he did or what he thought and felt at the beginning of the season. Most rookies don’t get on the field as much as he did, but when he did he took the opportunity to make his mark and that led to more and more play. And that led to… MLS Rookie of the Year. Did he dream of that early on? I’ll never know – I know I dreamed of it for him once I saw how good he really was and the kinds of opportunities he created for his team to win or score a goal. But he sure wasn’t sitting around thinking “I bet I don’t get to play much – there’s so many talented strikers on the team already, and I come from a small place and people doubted me in the draft…” No, he had his eyes wide open for opportunities to make his dreams of being a pro athlete come true, which is to play, to score, to celebrate with fans and teammates, to be a starter and integral part of the team, and to win. Another young rookie came in mid-season, Soony Saad, and though he didn’t play as much, his attitude was phenomenal. The first chance he got on the field for Sporting KC, he scored a goal! On his birthday, no less. One of his dreams must have come true in that moment, too.
Some folks dream about being rich, or famous, or something that doesn’t really focus on the work involved to get to some pinnacle that they aspire to. I say, focus on the work of your dreams, but don’t stop day-dreaming, and mentally scheming, and mentioning what you want to the people around you.
A now-famous speaker probably once hoped to help as many people as possible, and his reach grew and grew so he could.
An author hoped to have people read his books and share in his work.
A chef dreams of a room filled with people enjoying her food.
A lover dreams of looking into the eyes of her beloved and feeling the world stand still for a minute.
A doctor may dream of saving lives or healing someone from illness.
Do these people earn more money, fame, accolades along the way? Some do and some don’t. That’s why it’s best to focus on the work of the dream and not the title or money you want, in my opinion. Because it DOES take hard work to have most dreams be realized. My friend JR Schmitt said on Twitter just today: “It’s one thing to make a plan. It’s another to operationalize it and make it succeed.” She is right about that. A dream, even a very focused one, is just the beginning. It usually is going to take some work, partners, luck, will and persistence to achieve it ultimately.
I wanted to move away from downtown and get into a place where I have things around me that I can do and see in the evenings in the city, and I am doing that next month. It’s near a running trail, something I desperately wanted to be near. I wanted to have some reasons to go back to Texas more often, and we are now sharing office space in Dallas with someone who lives there, so that will become a more routine part of my life at some point. Some day, sooner than later in life, I may own part of a restaurant. Wouldn’t that just be too much? I’m not going to stop dreaming about what I want – in business and in life. You should start again if you’ve stopped since becoming an adult. It’s the only way to ever get things you truly want, or get where you want to go.
Best of luck – here are a few of my favorite inspirational tunes.
Photo credit: nattavut