Flashback post from January 2012.
When we write for ourselves or to help others, it is creating something new in the world! It encourages others to be their best. Why do I write for Startstuff.net? I absolutely love seeing people achieve their dreams! One of my biggest thrills in life is seeing people succeed and if I helped them along the way so much the better! What is it that truly makes you happy? Charles Schwab, who was best known for his investment company once said, ” I consider my ability to arouse enthusiasm among my people the greatest asset I possess and the way to develop the best that is in a person is by appreciation and encouragement.” I write about people who have dared to dream big and it hopefully not only encourages you, but it encourages me to go after my own dreams! When penning the words of the post, What would you start if you knew you couldn’t fail? or The difference is starting stuff! it is my hope that people will take their own ideas and take the first steps toward making them a reality. For some, who have already taken those first steps, I write in the hope that they will be recharged and find a nugget of truth and encouragement that help them push on toward their goal when they are in a period of doubting their dream. In the words of the great philosopher Eminem,
“Look, if you had, one shot, or one opportunity To seize everything you ever wanted – one moment. Would you capture it? Or just let it slip?”
I pray that you will not only read my blog posts and enjoy them but that you will take these ideas and spread them on to others! If one person who reads this turns around and helps other people succeed in their dreams, then it will truly have been an incredible day!
My friend Jimmie Franz wrote the following on a facebook post recently:
I am a regular reader of several writer forums on the net. Trying to learn the business and craft to advance as a writer. One of the topics I have been reading about today is the subject of agents. Most indie-writers don’t have an agent and most agents don’t want to represent an indie-writer. In fact, the consensus among agents seems to be, if an indie-writer isn’t selling 100,000 books a year, they aren’t interested in representing them. But honestly, if I was selling 100,000 books a year, I wouldn’t see the need for an agent.
One of the posters in this forum commented on the evolving nature of the book industry and how it relates to agents. He said “The problem with evolution is the agents are the least likely to be able to provide the kind of support that would be valuable to an indie author.”
The perfect response was posted “The biggest problem with evolution is extinction.”
In today’s constantly changing world, are you willing and able to shift from “That’s the way we have always done it.” to “Let’s see if we can get more out of doing it this new way.” If not, extinction could be what you are facing.
His point that we must evolve if we are to keep from becoming extinct is not only for the publishing industry. Agents and Authors are not the only ones who must learn to look at the world through a “What is possible?” lens instead of a “That is the way it is done.” lens. As a teacher, it is easy to fall into the trap of teaching the way it has always been done. Trying new things can be met with ridicule in the academy.
Here at startstuff.net we have been proponents of the idea that we should take risks, we should try new things, we should challenge the status quo and we should do the things that matter to us whether that is what society expects of us or not.
As someone who has done the journal publishing thing that academia expects and self published for fun, I will say that the latter is not only more fun, but has brought me more personal interaction with the reader.
We all have great ideas! Sometimes the hardest part of spreading that idea is getting up the guts to ask the very first person to help you. One simple example: I had some surveys for a project at school. The hard part wasn’t the survey, writing it up was easy, it was asking people to take it. Once I opened up my big mouth and asked though, people were happy to take it.
In business, just like my survey, sometimes the hard part is overcoming that fear and asking someone to buy your product or service. You know it is a great deal! You know it is worth it! You can share all the reasons why your company is awesome! It is that final moment when you have to ask that potential customer of client if they are IN that many of us choke. I want to encourage you to overcome the fear! The results will be worth it!
In college, I had plenty of dates. (In financial retrospect, I am not sure that this was a positive thing, but at the time it seemed good.) Some guys would ask how it was that I managed to go out so much? Here was my simple formula. Single guys, take note! If you ask a girl if she wants to go out with you, you have just increased your odds greatly at actually getting a date! If you ask out 100 girls and 94 say “NO!”…you still had six more dates than the guy who is scared to ask. (FYI, I doubt any guy’s odds will be that bad.)
Overcome the fear and ASK!
Each day, we make the choices to be true to who we are and do what it takes to make our dreams come true or we give away part of ourselves to someone else’s dream. While it isn’t always a bad thing to help someone else’s dream come true, it is if their dreams clash with your own. There are times in our lives when we are not the leader, when we choose to follow someone else and their dreams. As long as your own goal is to see that dream become a reality, then give it your all and do what you can to make it come true!
I am part of a church that is growing like crazy. I am not the pastor, nor was I on the team that first planted the church. I do believe in what they are doing and do all that I can to do my part to help us continue to grow and introduce people to Jesus Christ. Is it “my” dream? Well, in a strict sense, no. However, it has become my dream.
Don’t be afraid to choose to link your dreams with others both as a leader and as a follower. Just as you may need people to come along side you to make your dream come true, others will need you too.
When you choose to make a go of it and put it all on the line to make your dream come true, it will be hard work and you may need to work with others to make it come true, but in the end, it will be worth all the sweat and tears when you see the reality that was once just an idea you had! Choose to make a go of it! (Excerpt from e-book I Choose YOU!)
Another semester is winding down. One class completed, the other with one more night to go. This gives me a whopping 12 credits towards my Ph.D. and some days that seems like nothing has been accomplished. Then, I stop and realize that I am now further along in the process than before. Just getting accepted into the program was a huge step. No one else in my family has done a doctoral level degree, though many have done Bachelor and Master level degrees. Now, two semesters under my belt, I am 12 hours closer to this degree being a reality. If I hadn’t started by sending in an application, I wouldn’t be on this path at all.
All of us have dreams. Some of those dreams will take a good bit of time to turn them into a reality, but one thing is sure; you won’t make any progress on that dream if you don’t take the first step forward toward making the dream come true.
A good friend of mine has a dream of owning his own vineyard/winery. He says that wine makes people happy, and he loves to see people smile. One problem he is facing is that it takes land and a good bit of money to get a vineyard planted and harvested, and then more money to turn that crop into wine. What is he doing? He is working on getting debt free and on helping a friend who makes wine in his garage. He won’t have a label out next year, but in time, I believe he will have that vineyard and winery. While I don’t drink wine, I wish him the very best of luck! (And Greg, if you read this, If you come up with a line of grape juice or other fruit juice along the way, I would be glad to be a taste tester!)
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