I was scrolling through Facebook yesterday, and as always, it showed me a memory from days past. I began to scroll through all of the memories for the day and it went back 11 years!
Eleven years ago I posted how I wanted to work for myself, have the freedom to run things correctly and work wherever and whenever I wanted. That was eleven years ago, and the first thing that popped into my head was “You are still in that very spot today!!!”
I won’t lie, it bothered me and was in the back of my mind throughout the day, but rather than beat myself up for not reaching my goal in eleven years, I began to look at why.
Plans DON’T Go As Planned
When I wrote that post, my plan was to work for myself teaching martial arts, doing seminars, and one day having a school. Four years later I fell through a ceiling at my job ending everything for the next 2 years.
I needed to work a job to keep a roof over my head and food on the table, especially after being on workers comp for two years, so I worked on my goals on the side.
I got past my shoulder injuries and surgeries, but a year later I messed up my knee, requiring surgery, which brought those goals to an end, leaving me unable to even train martial arts myself.
In the past eleven years I had plans and goals, as I have throughout my whole life, but I realized that no matter how great and detailed my plans are, things will change and the plan will go out the window. I realized that life, even my own life is not totally by my plan and choosing.
Especially if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, God will have a plan for your life, and His plan will trump yours. You can ignore His plan and totally do things your way, but I found that in those instances, things usually don’t work out and you end up worse off than before.
Whether you are Christian or not, just understand that you cannot plan everything out in your life, or to reach your goals. Things will change, emergencies and accidents will happen that are beyond your control, and yes, you will fail and make mistakes throwing your plan totally off course.
(Speaking of mistakes, just as I am writing this, there was a crash and something breaking. I had hung a hook in our patio and hung my wife’s hand made windchime from Puerto Rico on it. Using extra strength double-sided tape, I placed the hook on a slightly uneven surface rather than on a smooth one.
Needless to say, it didn’t work and the windchime came crashing down and breaking. It is now going in the garbage due to me not doing what I now know I should’ve done)
But if you never take action and start toward your goal, you will never know if your plan works or will succeed.
Do, Never Follow
Our society celebrates success on many levels and those who succeed. People like Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, and Richard Branson are not only successful, wealthy, and famous, they are leaders in their respective fields.
I don’t think it’s the amount of money they have or the field they are in that made them successful. It was their courage to be different and do things how they saw fit, rather than follow the crowd and the others in their industry.
They envisioned a different and unique way of doing things and were doers who put their unique plans into action and persisted until they reached the levels they did. They did not let the ridicule of others stop them nor their failures make them quit and follow the crowd instead.
By doing things their way, they learned from their failures, adjusted and tried again and again until they found what worked. They were persistent and patient, struggled with stress, failure, and feelings of inadequacy, but they never quit.
I believe they would still be trying today if they hadn’t succeeded.
By doing and taking action over these eleven years, I have learned that I want to share my martial arts experience but not with the goal of being a YouTube celebrity. I want to have an online business, but I want to keep it small, as a solopreneur with no employees. I also learned that I want to develop and create passive streams of income that will allow me the freedom to live life on my terms.
What I want to encourage you to do with this article is to be yourself and don’t be afraid to do things your way. Lead the way, even if you are scared stiff and unsure of yourself, and NEVER follow the crowd. Our society is full of followers that are too lazy or too scared to think for themselves, and have nothing to show for it.
DO things your way and do not be afraid to fail.
By taking action and “doing” you will learn what you are good at, what you enjoy, what you hate, what works, what doesn’t, and your unique voice and perspective that his world needs.
We learn by doing, not following. It doesn’t happen overnight, it requires hard work, grit, patience, focus, and strength, but by staying the course, refusing to quit, do you, never follow….you WILL succeed!
I’m on this journey with you (11 years later!), let’s do this!