The most interesting part of building up any project in your life is understanding how you got there. What questions did you ask? What questions have you answered? Where did your inspiration come from? Ultimately, understanding WHY and HOW you do WHAT you do is of significant value. Simon Sinek is a great resource for this concept, but I’d like to try and relate it a bit more to the process of the individual. When we start working towards something we are undoubtedly faced with challenges. Obstacles that deter us from our projected path, requiring us to rethink how we approach something. This is not only because the process is challenging, but it’s also because the world changes. Industries change as history rewrites itself, and that on its own is a challenge. In such a scenario we can find ourselves at a loss – not knowing exactly what to do and unable to come up with solutions on how to move forward. At this point in the process, I believe “storytelling” is the answer…. Let me explain.
Historically, storytelling has been used for many things. The earliest forms of storytelling existed to pass on important knowledge, ideologies and traditions from generation to generation. Whether that story be in the form of a myth, or a simple explanation of experiences, sharing stories is one of the oldest and most effective ways to learn. Most of the knowledge we have today has been taught to us through some form of storytelling. Each generation adds their own experience to the story and shares it with the one that follows. It’s a beautiful phenomenon if you think about it. So how does this play into today’s world? A world where we are all fighting for a space to be somebody. Scared to take chances, scared to take risks, unsure of where to start? Well… what if we just shared stories?
As you grow up you begin to realize that you’re not the only one working towards something. You’re not the only one with a passion, you’re not the only one with a dream… and you are most definitely not the only one who wants to be “different.” It’s a unique time in our lives where we develop the desire to take ownership of an intellectual space in the world – giving our minds a chance to share their views with those around us. This can be in the form of art, a business, a service you are providing… any such PURPOSE by which you live that allows you to brand yourself and your work the way you do. So when you reach a point where you find a challenge, it becomes easy to get stuck. This is where you need to remember that you are not the only one in such a scenario.
Many of us have heard the saying “it’s all about who you know…” and I agree – but, I think there is more to it still. There are people who are already well connected, be it from their family’s connections, a particular school they went to, a club or organization they are members of etc. In many cases, people will separate themselves from such individuals thinking that because they already have connections they have the rest of their lives set for them. Sometimes this is true but it does not stop at that. What will those people do with those connections? What questions will they ask them? What about those who don’t have connections? Does their lack of an infrastructure to depend on mean that their ideas are not valid and their dreams unattainable? Not at all. If you are somebody who feels as though you don’t have the “connections” to get something or learn something you need to grow your project, think about what a connection really is.
A connection, professional or other, is based off of a relationship. Your ability to build a relationship with those around you is the basis of making connections. Those who have connections, tend to rely on them, and those who don’t, tend to think that they can’t have the same chances. The reality is, however, that if we all shared our stories and took a chance to situate ourselves in new contexts with new people, incredible things can happen and unique connections can be made. Opportunities are not just handed out. Opportunities are created. When you linger on the sidelines of life you strip yourself of the opportunities to create meaningful relationships with people who can truly teach you something, and learn from you as well.
An important part of this phenomenon is knowing that you are of value. There is something unique about all of us. There is something about each of us that differentiates us from everyone else. Know that. Own that. Rely on that when branching out. Forget business deals and professional inquiries for a moment and allow yourself to be true to who you are and what value you bring to a room. When you share your genuine self with the universe, the universe will match you with opportunities to become that self on a larger scale. It all starts with understanding your value, and sharing your story. Go to events you think you have no business being at. Sign up for organizations you don’t think you will enjoy. Try new things. Be uncomfortable. The answers you are looking for are all around you, you just have to believe in the reality that you will find them and understand that they are not necessarily in the places you “should” be looking. You also never know who is around you. You never know who is looking for somebody just like you… be confident in who you are and what your value is.
Share your story with the world – I guarantee that it will play a significant part in somebody else’s. Not only will the world benefit from your story, but you will also learn from others’. People are more afraid of asking silly questions than not knowing a simple solution. The answers are everywhere, you just need to ask. Put your energy into the world, invest in your story, and you will grow from what you experience.
Meet people. Ask questions. Be genuine… life awaits!
#zuluechoinitiative #network #believeinthepowerofyourdream