Throughout my 13 years of schooling, I had the privilege of attending lectures delivered by guest speakers from all walks of life. They would talk about their education, their trials and tribulations on their way to the top, and how much they love where they’re at now.
Doctors, nurses, solicitors, soldiers, CEOs, police and dozens of others were paraded in front of us. They were meant to inspire us. My teachers hoped that these successful people could encourage us to do our homework and study for exams, because one day all those tests would amount to a degree and a lifelong career in our chosen field.
Unfortunately, those talks did not always have the desired effect. Sometimes the message received was less ‘work hard and you’ll get to where you want to be’, and more ‘I am successful because of WHO I am’, implying that another person could not reach the same level of success, certainly not in that field.
This was not always the case, but unfortunately, it was particularly prominent from entrepreneurs, i.e. ‘I came up with an idea and am successful off the back of that. You need to find your own form of genius and develop an idea. Don’t have an idea? Don’t be an entrepreneur.’
Yes, the Idea is Important, But…
There are a wealth of skills required to get that idea off the ground. Don’t have an idea? Pair up with someone who does!
According to Belbin (1981), there are nine different roles involved in teamwork.
One person may have an idea, but it takes several people to get it off the ground. An author may write a book, but it takes editors, publishers, publicists, and so many other people to get that book into print.
You don’t need to be a type of person, or someone with a specific background to create something. Play to YOUR strengths. Work out what YOUR niche is. Our lives are not prescribed from birth or dependent on our circumstances. Some of us may have to work harder than others, and we all have different challenges to overcome. That said, aside from the laws of nature, your only limitations are those you set for yourself.
I grew up believing that a person had to be a certain type of individual to create something. Because I didn’t think I was naturally inclined towards art, I avoided art class and only participated when participation was forced upon me. Because I wasn’t the ‘sporty type’, I intentionally ‘forgot’ my trainers regularly for P.E. class and was always ‘sick’ on Sports Day.
I was under a severe misunderstanding. One doesn’t need to be brilliant to develop an idea, come up with a theory, or start a business. All anyone needs is to be unique, which we all are.
Consider: what is the idea, skill, or niche area that makes you YOU? If you harness your personal brand, you can create whatever you want. If you believe in yourself, you can sell your idea to someone else and together you will create something better than either of you could have made alone.
The Idea is Only Half of the Equation
The other key ingredient is self-belief. You can have all the ideas in the world, but if you do not have enough faith in yourself to enact them, you may as well have no ideas.
Struggling to believe in yourself? Talk to a mentor, relative, or close friend. You may find someone else believes in you, even if you struggle to believe in yourself. That will help you gain enough self-esteem to bring your dream to life.
Alternatively, they may challenge your idea, pointing out its flaws. Don’t let that get you down. Being so close to your idea may have blinded you to its flaws. Together, you can polish what may have been a rough diamond into something truly beautiful.
More mindfulness and wellbeing tips can be found in my motivational calendar for 2019.
Whether reflecting on experience, or looking forward in anticipation, every day is an opportunity to do something positive. TV psychologist & author Dr Audrey Tang (43) and creative writer & millennial business blogger Rachel Gordon (23) have teamed up to inspire your 2019 – whatever your age!
We have recently released a charity edition within the Mindful Motivations range, from which all proceeds will be donated to the children’s mental health charity Place2Be. Please purchase a calendar to help us support this worthwhile cause.