This seems somewhat obvious, but I am going to state it anyway. If you want a happy life, you need to dream big. Your definition of “big” is going to vary greatly from others, but that doesn’t matter one bit. It’s your big time, and you shouldn’t sell that short.
As a teenager, I wanted to be a Pro Racquetball Player. By 24, I had turned Pro and started playing a full schedule of about 26 events a year. I traveled around the country, and even to Mexico and Canada on a couple of occasions as part of pursuing this dream. I made it into the top 20 in the world, and spent three years there before I retired from competition. But this was a two part process…
Once I had the dream and the end goal in mind, I had to step back and figure out the first couple of steps in the process to get to that destination. In this case, I needed to do a bunch of things, as I was a complete beginner when I made the choice to pursue this goal. I had no coach, no experience, and I didn’t even belong to a racquetball club at that point. So I had no where to go but up, at least that’s what I told myself. In retrospect, I would have done things a little differently, but then again hindsight is 20/20 as the saying goes.
I had to put all of the peripheral pieces into place as well as improve my game. I joined a health club near my home that had racquetball courts and good players to practice against. I worked out to get more fit, and I became a student of athletic fitness as part of this journey. I spoke with accomplished players and learned what they did to reach a high level of play. I took notes on those conversations and I wrote down experiences, match results and other details from the tournaments I played in. I still have these in a box in my closet; they are literally from a lifetime ago. Like 35 years or more kinda old.
Regardless of what you decide to undertake as a big audacious goal, you need to pursue it in the same fashion I did as described above. You need to figure out what you want, and then map out a plan to get there. It won’t be easy, but you can do it. If I can, you can. In many ways there was nothing special about me at a young age. I learned to be a successful competitor, a well-rounded athlete, and later a great coach. I didn’t possess any of these skills at the start of all this; I acquired them along the way. That is the part the most don’t understand…you can’t wait until you are prepared. You need to start and figure things out along the way.
I am telling you from direct personal experience, DO NOT let a little detail like not knowing what you are doing hold you back from starting out.
In the world we live in today, there is no reason you can’t learn everything and anything you need to know to accomplish something that is currently out of your reach. There is already a YouTube video for seemingly everything. There are blogs and chatrooms and books and TikTok videos on just about anything you’d need to know. All you have to do is start the process. You need to acquire the rote skills to be proficient at your endeavor, but this is a marathon, not a sprint. As you mature as a person, both physically and emotionally, things like competition become easier. If your pursuit is in the business world, the more you do, the more you learn. Sometimes the lessons are hard, and maybe very costly. But this is part of that process; if it was easy, everyone would do it. It is supposed to be a difficult journey; it weeds out the wimps and it makes you appreciate it that much more when you do succeed.
And just so you can plan on this in advance, you are going to make mistakes, you’re gonna fail, and you definitely will not get things right all the time. In fact, until you get to a certain level of proficiency, you are likely to fail/mess up/belly flop more often than not. In fact, when you notice that 51% of the time you are getting it right instead of wrong, you are on your way to success. Seriously, I know that sounds crazy, but I believe that to be true.
Another thing to pencil into your plan is a fair amount of patience. Nothing happens as fast as you want it to, an in many cases that is a good thing. You need a bunch of experiences and failures under your belt before you are really ready to handle success of any kind. There is no surprise that many childhood stars turn out to be troubled adults; they experience too much too soon and long before they are equipped to handle it. Success in any format is the same way; the years of work and struggle is what helps get you ready to hit the big time and somewhat handle it effectively.
No one said it would be easy….but some did say it would be worth it.
I wish you luck in your endeavors.