Aim High, Be Great
“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” ~Les Brown
When I was in middle school, I would consistently go to the basketball courts and play ball with guys either in high school or college. Needless to say, I was always the shortest and least experienced player on the court. Other than my jumping abilities, there really wasn’t any skill that gave me the slightest chance to score many points, let alone to be the best on the court. Similarly, when I was playing Pop Warner football in middle school, I asked my parents to sign me up for the 160lb team instead of my own weight class two years before my age would require me to do so. To put that into perspective, I entered my freshman year college football training camp weighing in at a “massive” 159lbs…(thankfully I’ve filled out my frame since then). Essentially, when it came to sports I had a hunger to aim high in order to not just become a better player but to be great.
As those years have passed, that hunger is something that I have found to be valuable in my professional and entrepreneurial career. Now, the goal is to never be the best or the smartest person in the room. While you are growing in your career, the most beneficial thing that you can do is to surround yourself with people whom you can learn from and that will push you past your limits. As young professionals and entrepreneurs, do not make the mistake of believing that you can be successful by yourself or just by motivating yourself. In addition to a support system that will cheer you on as you move through your journey, it is also important to have people that will push you to aim higher.
Most people aren’t unsuccessful because they aim too high and miss, but instead are unsuccessful because they aim too low and hit it.
Always try to place yourself in situations for growth so that you can set and keep the bar higher than you think is possible to reach at that moment.
3 Tips for Keeping the Bar High:
1. Find an Accountability Partner
Set consistent check-ins with someone that you trust and that also has goals for their own success. Challenge each other to share updates since the last check-in to move closer to each other’s goals.
2. Create a Diverse Community
Try not to always be around people who think exactly like you do and do exactly what you do. A key to maximizing your potential for growth is to step out of your comfort zone.
3. Be Great
This is a mindset. Not every single day is going to produce life-changing results. But if at the end of each day you can say that you took even a small step towards your goals, then you are one step closer to being great.
The long term goal is ever-changing and reshaping into something new, but for now, I’m looking to open my own creative agency made up of Black and Brown people to support the businesses and stories of Black and Brown people. Catch me in a few years, the journey may shift my life in another direction, but I know for sure creativity as an outlet digitally and visually will remain at the core.
Finally, I want to leave you with this, if you absorb nothing else – begin taking those first steps to what you want to manifest in your life and watch as the path unfolds in front of you. It is up to you to continue taking those steps. The work is never finished but with each step in the right direction comes an increase in purpose and fulfillment. Know that!