Yes, I said bad. I want to know what is easy for you? What do you love? But also what do you hate? What is your biggest weakness? Life does not have a road map. Once you decide what you want to do, life will often come in and throw you a curveball. Often, unexpected events in your life define not only your path, but also who you become. They shape your passions and define what is important to you and how you measure success and your own happiness.
Often times it is those curveballs that we are thrown that really define who we are and this is how growth happens. We grow the most when we are forced to endure failure, obstacles, or tragedies. This is how life impacts us—shaping us into not only who we are in this world but giving us the skills and the passions to make a dream possible. Read the biographies of any great self-made leader or businessperson and you’ll find the same story. No one got where they are without challenges along the way and none of them are on the journey they originally planned.
Success lies in perseverance; it is the decision to press forward through the hard times, keeping your vision and goals clear. People, circumstances, and tragedies will affect everyone. I have learned that business and life are about knowing and understanding people and knowing how you can help them, not the other way around.
You need to be able to identify your own strengths and weaknesses. From a strengths standpoint, you should pinpoint and look honestly at what you are good at and (on the other side of that coin) what you are not good at? Just because you have weaknesses doesn’t mean you won’t be able to achieve your dreams. To find success, you must know who you are in order to align yourself with individuals who can help get you there by being able to fill in your weaknesses with their strengths. Everyone has different motivations for working. For some it is money, for some it is to have a purpose, and for others it is a responsibility. Knowing your own motivations and recognizing others’ will give you the greatest chance for aligning resources to get things done!
When assessing your strengths and weaknesses, have you uncovered a passion? Is there something that keeps you up at night? Is there a cause or a benefit for the greater good that you are passionate about? It might be a product, service, or a personal strength that you have tapped into. If you know what you’re passionate about, you are one of the lucky ones. Harness this knowledge and apply it. That doesn’t mean you need to own a business. I am an entrepreneur and I know entrepreneurship is a passion of mine. Owning a business is not for everyone, and you can use your strengths in other pursuits to become a force to be reckoned with supporting another company. Knowing what you are passionate about is half the battle; finding some way to utilize your strengths is the second part.
Failure doesn’t keep us from success; fear of failure does. I don’t care how old you get or how much knowledge you gain—fear is still there and is a very real thing. It is something you just have to learn to control. Experience, knowledge, and a support team will help you lessen those fears. I want to be frank when I say this: the reality is that you might fail. You might have already failed. I have started companies that have been nothing shy of mediocre. Failure is part of success, and you only truly fail if you give up. But which is worse: trying and failing, or never trying? To me the fear of never trying at all is worse! To me, chasing a dream is just as necessary as breathing oxygen! I don’t feel fully alive or purposeful if I am not reaching for my calling and I believe we all have a calling to be someone and make an impact!
Kristy Dickerson, keynote speaker, businesswoman, and active CEO and co-founder of STARTplanner, has devoted her life to providing hope for individuals who are looking to achieve balance, success, and happiness within their own lives. She is the author of Start Balancing https://startbalancing.com/