Wednesday was my Birthday…my 44th birthday. The good news is that I still feel like I’m in my 30’s and hopefully I look that way too. But it is pretty interesting to think about the possibility that if I live a long life, I am possibly at that half way point as we speak.
So when looking at my life so far, it’s fun to see what I’ve accomplished and if I am where I would have wanted to be half-way through my life. Thankfully the answer for me is yes. I realize that I have accomplished more in my 44 years than many people accomplish in a lifetime. I believe that is because I work at it all the time. Success almost never happens by accident and my accomplishments have been plans that I crafted and set in motion.
I set goals. I review them regularly (as of this year daily). I constantly read and study and travel and learn. I am on a quest to squeeze all the life out of my life that I possibly can. And I also have a very clear vision of where I am headed. And that, my friends, may be the single most important part of my 44 years of success. You can’t move towards your goal if you don’t know where you are going. You cannot walk a straight line if you don’t have a fixed point to follow. Now don’t get me wrong, none of our lives are actually a straight line. And success is definitely not a straight line. But the goal is to stay on course more than you are off course. And the thing that helps keep you on track is noticing as quickly as possible when you are off so you can course correct and keep forging ahead.
None of us are perfect. Nobody is going to hit every goal they strive towards. But if you don’t have goals or a plan of attack for reaching your dreams, you will have a very low chance of getting there. Still, you can have the best plans in the world and if you don’t take ACTION, you won’t achieve them. Action is definitely the secret sauce!
I am not one to regret much in life. I have almost no regrets really. And I think that is because I take very focused action on a daily basis to create the life that I want for myself and for my family. I don’t wait for things to happen. I make things happen.
This started way back in my childhood. Fortunately I had parents who had a clear picture of what kind of life they wanted for me. And what they wanted was a life where I could dream big and I could have the resources and support system to achieve anything I set my mind to. Lucky me! I am well aware that everyone doesn’t have that kind of support. The funny thing is that as a child when my parents were having me listen to Dr. Wayne Dyer on cassette tapes at the age of 12 while my friends were watching Saved by the Bell (ok I did watch it some too), I didn’t think their ideas were super cool.
But by age 18, I was buying my own set of Tony Robbins personal power tapes from an infomercial at midnight from my college dorm and mapping out my future. And thanks to my parents planting these sorts of seeds in my life, my future grew into many successes and achievements because I designed the life I wanted and I didn’t wait until the timing was perfect or I was “ready”. If I thought it was important then I went after it. I still do this today.
It’s never to late to achieve your dream life. Martha Stewart achieved her first major success at age 41 when her first book came out. She had started her catering business in her mid-thirties. Vera Wang didn’t get into fashion until age 40. My fellow Arkansan Sam Walton opened his first Wal-Mart at age 44. And you’ve probably heard that Colonel Sanders started Kentucky Fried Chicken at age 62. I started my design firm at age 27 and it’s been a fantastic 17 years of growth, but I am thrilled that I still have so much time to reach even bigger goals. These stories of great women like Martha Stewart and Vera Wang inspire me to keep pushing for my dreams and that it’s never too late to start a new path.
If you are looking at your life right now whether you’re “middle aged” like I may or may not have just become (wink), or you’re in your 30’s or 60’s or 80’s, the most important thing is that you believe that you have what it takes to make your goals and dreams happen. And that you do that one critical thing…Take Action!
Cheers to going for your dreams this year so matter your age. You can do it!