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Do you Have a Path that Leads to your Dreams?
Do you know the difference between a labyrinth and maze? A labyrinth is a single route from beginning to center. It twists and turns along the way, but it ultimately winds it way to the end. A maze, on the other hand, is intentionally confusing. There are many choices and dead-ends, making it very difficult to find your way out once your in.
If you have a dream, but have never taken the time to design yourself a roadmap on how to achieve it, the journey to reaching for it may be very much like a maze—if you even begin the journal at all.
On the other hand, if you create a plan and keep putting one foot in front of the other, taking steps along the roadmap you created, you will make steady progress toward making your dream a reality. Once you create your roadmap, just like a labyrinth, you no longer face overwhelm with where to begin and what to do next. You simply keep taking tiny steps along the route you have created. With consistent daily action, you'll ultimately cover way more distance toward reaching your dream than if it stays simply a wish for the distant future.
Creating a Roadmap to Your Dreams
The easiest place to begin is with the end in mind and then work backwards from there. Begin by getting a clear vision of what you look and feel like once your dream comes to fruition. Don't be afraid to dream big. (Side-note, if you've long forgotten your dreams and nothing comes to mind when you think about what you want for your future, you may want to check out my free downloadable The Ultimate Guide to Creating Your Dream Bucket List)
Jot down what things need to happen before you can get to this point. Do you need different skills? What actions will you need to take to acquire these skills? What other actions are necessary to bring this dream to life?
Let's take one of my dreams as an example and consider what this process would look like. My big audacious dream is for JMB Living to help hundreds of thousands of women each and every day.
The JMB Living Journal's Dream System for creating your dreams guides you to list what you would like to accomplish in the next twelve months toward creating your dreams as a first step. You can create a lot of momentum toward your dream within a twelve month time span.
To realize my big dream of helping hundreds or thousands of women, my small business start-up has much growing to do. I too will need to continue to grow and evolve as a leader. So one of the dreams I listed on my Annual Dreams page in my spring JMB Living Journal is: Grow into a Strong Leader.
What knowledge, skills and changes are needed?
Next I need to consider what skills a strong leader of a successful organization possesses and what actions I will need to take to learn and cultivate these skills.
A few things that come to mind with respect to this are:
Knowledge about how to scale a business; what systems will be needed, how do you convert from packaging in your living room to sending orders on a larger scale, how to manage financing and cash flow, and many more aspects of growing a business.
How to successfully reach women and let them know that JMB Living exists.
Soft skills to grow a team that is excited to help me create this vision for JMB Living and help them achieve personal growth and satisfaction in the process.
What actions must be taken to acquire them?
Using the Dream Step System in the JMB Living Journal as a guide to work backwards from dream realized to the starting point of today, the next step is to list on paper are that paths that can be taken to achieve the results desired on the Annual Dreams page.
Seasonal Dream Paths
Keeping in mind the knowledge, skills and changes that need to take place, choose several paths that can be taken to make forward progress toward the annual dream. Here is what my dream paths for this annual dream look like based on the thoughts above:
For gaining knowledge about how to scale a business, I decided to invest in joining a mastermind group called Launch and Scale and get weekly coaching from successful entrepreneurs with experience in helping other e-commerce start-ups grow their brand to seven figures. There are many other methods I could have chosen to learn the skills necessary to grow a business, but ultimately I needed to choose a pathway to learning and commit to taking the actions necessary to begin to absorb the knowledge.
To learn how to successfully reach women and let them know that JMB Living exists, I recognize I need to learn about marketing. At this point, JMB Living's growth has primarily happened via word of mouth. One aspect of marketing that I decided would be useful to learn is how I can better take advantage of SEO. So one of my seasonal dream paths will be to take an SEO course. Again, there are many ways to learn more about marketing and many facets that I could choose to learn about, but you have to start somewhere.
Then with respect to acquiring soft skills to nurture and grow my team, I decided to read at least one book on acquiring leadership skills this season. I actually have several in the works at this time, but I believe time spent daily in this area will help me keep my focus on evolving into the leader that I would like to become.
Monthly Dream Steps
Continuing to work backwards toward what I need to do this week and even today, next I list in my journal the steps I intend to take this month to make progress toward my dreams. Let's take a look at the steps I decided to take for each of the pathways listed above.
With respect to the Launch and Scale group, there are two weekly group coaching calls and my monthly intention is to take advantage of these at least once per week. There are also digital learning modules that give advice and direction for many areas of growing a business. I decided to commit to completing at least one of these modules before the end of the month.
For the SEO course, the first step will be to do some research and decide upon a course to take. This likely will be a digital course, so during the month, I'd like to research, find and begin the coursework.
With respect to reading a book on leadership, I've chose to commit to finishing Decisive by Chip and Dan Heath. Making good decisions quickly is something I've struggled with in the past and the ability to do this well, in my opinion, is one hallmark of a strong leader.
Daily Progress Along the Roadmap to Your Dreams
After you have made a roadmap on how to get to your dream, it's time to start down the road in the direction you've charted. New opportunities may come up along your journey and you'll have to decide whether it makes sense to take a detour or change your route slightly, but at least you have a plan that you can look at daily and take small steps on a consistent basis to ensure you continue to work toward making your dream a reality.
While miracles do happen, you are much more likely to achieve success if you take control and take daily action. Your plotted course will serve as your guide to help you take these steps. Here are some examples of small steps I could take this month toward meeting my monthly dream steps.
Participate in a coaching call.
Watch one video in one of the Launch and Scale Modules.
Research and list three possible SEO course to consider.
List pros and cons of three SEO courses found.
Make a decision and purchase an SEO coures
Read 1 chapter of Decisive.
Read 5 pages of Decisive.
There is no doubt in my mind taking the time to list out and write down a roadmap of how to achieve your dreams will not only help you make progress in the right direction, but it also will give you the satisfaction actually creating the life you want. The opposite choice is to let life happen to you. Either way you are making a choice. Don't put off getting started. If you don't have a current roadmap to follow, start crafting one today.
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