Guard Your Dreams
The Importance of Protecting Your Goals as You Build Your Network Marketing Business
Today’s post is another from an article I wrote back in 2009. It remains one of the greatest lessons I have learned on my personal development journey!
The book I’m currently reading is a classic — one of those books that has been referred to me over, and over again and one of those books that I have picked up and started reading several times, but never finished.
I think some books are like that — you have to be in the right place, and at the right time, in order to fully benefit from what’s written inside. I remember one of the first personal development books I ever read… the first one that had any real impact on my life — Maximum Achievement. In the very beginning it says that everything you read in that book should have a “feel good” feeling attached to it; if it doesn’t, then you aren’t ready to read it yet and you should come back to it at another time.
I feel like that is the place I’ve reached with the book I’m reading now — How to Win Friends and Influence People.
I’ve thought a lot about why I’ve never brought myself to finish this book before now… it’s been sitting on my bookshelf for 3 1/2 years, unopened. The first two chapters have turned down pages and underlined sentences, but after that point… well, it might as well be brand new.
The mistake I made was one I would never make today — for many reasons. I took it with me to high school. I left it sitting on my desk next to my text books and I can still hear the comment that was made by a person in my class as if they were standing beside me right now, “Wow — what kind of book is that?! I can’t believe you’re reading a book about tricking people into being your friend.”
Ouch. Talk about a shot to someone’s self confidence! There I was, new not only to the industry of Network Marketing but also to this incredible world of personal development and one of my peers just snuffed out that small spark that was beginning to burn there. I took the book home, put it in my nightstand drawer and haven’t opened it since.
Over the past 3 1/2 years I have heard it recommended by countless people and countless sources. It can be found in the “Recommended Reading” section of virtually every single other book I’ve read. But none of those things were strong enough to drown out that one crushing comment.
What finally made me pick it back up? In all honesty, I couldn’t tell you — because I really don’t know. I finished Jeff Olsen’s “The Slight Edge” last week, put it back on the shelf and spent a couple of minutes scanning the titles of the books on my personal development shelf. I debated with myself whether to re-read an old favorite or to pick something new, and for some reason something made me pick up this book.
Wow, am I glad I did. I have been missing out on SO much!
You see, the mistake I made 3 1/2 years ago was not so uncommon. It’s the same mistake so many people make when they get excited about a new goal they have set for themselves. It’s the same mistake that causes so many people to fail in their attempt to reach their dreams — my mistake was this:
In my excitement about my new goal — to pursue Network Marketing, and begin my personal development education, I didn’t care WHO knew. I was so excited that I wanted to share this goal, this dream of mine, with anyone and everyone no matter who they were.
My parents were so supportive of my new venture that, in my mind, why wouldn’t everyone else be just as excited for me?
What a huge mistake.
I believe it was something in Jeff Olsen’s book, “The Slight Edge”, that caused me to realize why that person had criticized my reading choice so many years ago; that reason being that the main reason people criticize another person’s dreams is because if that person sets a big goal and reaches it, then they themselves have failed. They see their own failure in that other person’s success — they see their own fears, their own doubts, their own unfulfilled and unsatisfying life.
Their only defense is to criticize that person — in hopes of deterring them from following their dream.
Reality is, the bigger your dream, the more criticism you will encounter along your path to reaching it. Guard your dreams — hold them close to your heart. Nurture them, daily, through the expansion of your own belief. Share them only with those you know, like and trust; only with those who will be just as supportive and nurturing of them as you will be.
Then, one day, your dreams WILL be strong enough for you to share with the world. You may still face criticism, but you (and your dreams) will be strong enough to handle that criticism and use it to empower you rather than allowing it to hold you back.
Never be afraid to dream big. Dream as big as you can! Through big dreams will come big successes — and through those successes you will create for yourself and incredible, incredible life.
My challenge to you today, is to remember a dream you once had. Maybe it was crushed by someone; maybe it has been placed on the bookshelf of your life and left there to collect dust. Take it down, dust it off, and start dreaming again. Nurture it, grow your own belief in it — and, if you must share it with someone, share it with someone who will help it grow, not with someone who will stomp on it again.
Oh, and go read Dale Carnegie’s “How To Win Friends and Influence People”, it is truly an incredble book that should be read by everyone! I can promise you it doesn’t teach you how to “trick people into being your friend.” What great insight on human relationships and dealing with people in day-to-day life… it’s called a masterpiece and a classic for a reason!
The quote I leave you with is this, by Jeff Olsen from his book “The Slight Edge” — it’s kind of a long one:
“If you are one of those rare and special five-percenters who decides to ignore gravity and take to the sky…who chooses to break free of the downward pull of life and rise to a higher quality of life, accomplishment and success, to be a pioneer and risk discomfort and ridicule for the sake of your dreams — well, I’ve got good news and bad news.
The good news is, you’re already exceptionally well oriented toward success.
The bad news is, all those ninety-five others are going to be yanking on you, sitting on you, naysaying and doomsaying on you, and doing their level best to pull you back down. Why? Because if you succeed, you’ll make them look as scared and desperate as they’re afraid they really are.
If you win, they lose. If you succeed, they fail.”
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PS: If you’re looking for some tips to help grow your network marketing organization faster than ever, grab a free copy of my latest eBook, “Secrets from Growing Up MLM” here.
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