Last night I had a very interesting dream. I was walking down the street and I noticed a man speaking with a child. It turns out that the man was Tim Cook, CEO of Apple. He was telling a young boy that he can do anything he wanted when he grows up and that he should always remain positive.
The child initially looked sad, had on torn clothing and was sitting in a shopping cart, which made me think that he has been living a challenged life. Mr. Cook was able to instill confidence and positivity into this young boy. I noticed the change in him as if a light switch went off while they were conversing. The boy became happy and felt empowered. We all need some encouragement and a morale boost every now and then. The thing is, not everyone receives this type of interaction often. Maybe because we are too busy to seek it out or work for people that do not offer praise and support.
Don’t let this be you. I highly encourage you to find a “business buddy”, partner, mentor or friend that can remind you that you are smart, skilled, driven, effective, or “fill in the blank”. I have a few folks that I count on to inspire me. First off, my wife is my strongest pillar. She enables me and consistently reminds me that I am a great husband, father and professional. At iContact, Shawna Vandenheuvel reminds me of my contributions, capabilities, and is a great sounding board and mentor. Shawna and I have worked together for seven years and has played a strong role in developing my career.
Also, I speak often with folks like Lori Bruhns, Marilyn Shannon and Chuck Hester. Maria Muniz is the power behind my words. She helps me polish what I write and assists with presentation content and webinars. This group of professionals hold me accountable, offers great advice, and most importantly, remind me that I am doing great things. I also do the same for them. I know that they would not hesitate to help me with anything I ask and they know I would help them in a heartbeat. Do you have a network of people that support you? If not, start nurturing your connections now. Find people that have similar goals and interests and ask them to be your “business buddy”.
I believe that this works because I have seen the results of having a strong network. Once I optimized my network and started to meet with the right people, new doors and opportunities opened for me. I have written about “GTY” in the past and feel it is always good to be both a mentor and a mentee. Everyone involved benefits. Find someone that you can help and look for others that can assist you with your professional goals and aspirations. Remember Tim Cook said that we can do anything we want!
Oh! That reminds me. After I walked up to Mr. Cook and the young boy, I was invited into Tim’s Prius after the conversation came to a close. Mr. Cook said that he had something that he wanted to show me. We sat in the back while his driver pulled away. He pulled out his phone and I could not help but notice that it did not have a home button and the screen went from edge to edge, meaning that it did not have a bezel. I could not help but think: “Is that the new iPhone 8”? Then I thought: “Should I ask him”?
I bet that you are dying to know, right? Well, I woke up shortly after. I do not know what might have happened! Rise and grind. It goes to tell you that you can do anything you want, but you cannot always have everything handed to you. It takes time and effort. I guess I will have to wait and see what the iPhone 8 will look like, but I know that I am currently doing what I love every day because of the support of my network, my beliefs that I can do what I want, and I am always positive!