Dreamers vs Achievers
In life, I believe there are two types of people. No, this is not a political article; I am not talking about Democrats or Republicans. In fact, the two kinds of people I am talking about fit into every political party, socioeconomic class, and race. The two types of people I am talking about are dreamers and achievers.
Everyone sets out to accomplish something in life. We all have dreams of doing or becoming something, but not everyone achieves their life vision. Throughout my life, I have spent a reasonable amount of time observing how people achieve their goals. I also spent time filtering out the things that prevent most people from reaching their goals.
I think every single one of us has periods of our lives when we were setting and making strides towards our goals. There are also probably examples of when we got off track and made decisions to abandon our initial vision, perhaps even blaming our circumstances along the way. This article is going to break-down some of the most common mindsets that people hold to become achievers and some of the common pitfalls of those whose goals stay as dreams.
It’s about Behavior, Not the Outcome
Every Achiever is a Dreamer, but not every Dreamer is an Achiever. How you respond to events in your life is how you separate yourself from the crowd dreamers. A viral example of this right now is Lamar Jackson (NFL Quarterback). Lamar is the leading candidate for MVP. Some people may wonder, “What does he know about setbacks?” Before being drafted into the pros, Jackson went to the NFL combine— essentially a tryout for the NFL—trying to prove to NFL scouts he could play quarterback at the next level. Instead, many of the scouts there said he was not good enough, and he would have a better chance if he tried a different position.
Imagine going to a job interview and the interviewer telling you to get a different degree because you are not a good fit for the one you currently have. How would you respond? Would you go on social media and write a post about how this person was a jerk and didn’t know what they were talking about?
In today’s victim culture, this kind of response is becoming more and more common. Jackson, with his elevated status, could have easily chosen that route. Instead, he responded to this situation not with anger or resentment, but with an open ear. Jackson wanted to know his flaws and what was needed to make it in the NFL as a quarterback. Now, after being in the league for 2 years, he is going to be an MVP, not because he brushed-off the criticism, but because he heard the critiques as an opportunity and set out to improve himself. We will all go through setbacks and have doubters on our way to our end destination, but how we react to them is what sets apart the achievers from the dreamers.
It’s about Mindset: One Day vs. Day One
This is probably the easiest thing you can do to start achieving what you set out to do. Start talking in absolutes. I speak to a lot of people that say they are going to Europe someday, or they are going to start going to the gym in the New Year. Start today with an internal and external dialogue of “I will do.” Practicing this type of talk is very impactful. By repeating it over and over again, you start to believe you can actually do it.
Think about it, which coach did you work harder for? The one who said you’ll never get there or the one that said let’s keep working at it because it eventually it will come. If your dream is going to Europe, open up a savings account after reading this and put $5 in that account and set up an automatic deposit each month. If your goal is to get in shape in 2020, text one of your friends and share your Apple Watch activity data with them to help keep yourself accountable.
Going to Europe and getting in shape may be superficial dreams, but they are a great place to start. Once you begin to see success in these small areas, you will begin to see that you can use this same mindset to impact more significant goals in your life.
It’s about Purpose: Internal vs. External Focus
Who do your dreams center around? Are you the center of your dreams, or are others? If your vision is “me” focused, you will have a tough time sustaining that vision. There are very few people who can accomplish anything significant all by themselves. You have to learn to be able to delegate. Another sports comparison: every player has their own specific strengths.
The best players and the best teams are the ones that can develop chemistry and realize that they can achieve more as a cohesive unit than as an individual. So make sure the dream you are striving for includes those people.
Does your vision include your family, your church, or your country? Having a dream state that provides for and elevates others will immediately add a lot of motivation and potential to your mission.
I hope this article was able to provide some actionable insights for everyone who decided to read it. I hope the advice was at just the right elevation to begin applying the behaviors, mindset, and purpose. Turning your dreams into reality is not all about outcomes, but more of how you respond. Stop putting it off and start making moves toward your target today. Last but not least, make sure the goal you are attempting to achieve is not solely me-driven.
If you like this article or you have any questions for me feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org