Ever since I was a young girl had this mindset that we are ultimately in charge of our futures. This mindset is fully attributed and instilled to me by my mother. Each day as she drove myself and my brother to school and right as I was about to leave car she would say, “Anything you dream, you can be” and “You have the power to choose who you want to become”. I was enamored with this idea that I had the wonderful opportunity to be the artist of my entire life, and that to me seemed like a pretty miraculous kind of masterpiece to have the chance to create.
I think often times we get so caught up in trying to succeed alone, myself included. My dear friend, let me silence this notion for once and for all; none of us can succeed alone. We are merely the sum of all the people we learn from, interact with, and listen to, so why we wouldn’t take an opportunity to stand on the shoulders of giants is besides me.
Inspiration and ideas stop at nothing, so why should we? Having mentors is a key fundamental to success. Even when we gravitate to this idea that we can do it ourselves, nothing will replace the invaluable encouragement and education given from a great leader. One of these mentors who has inspired me for years since I saw his viral and moving ,”Last Lecture”, has been the ever impressive Randy Pausch, a professor of computer science, human–computer interaction, and design at Carnegie Mellon University.
Other than being known for his infectious enthusiasm, Randy Pausch has an enduring passion to play and his determination to achieve his many childhood dreams, among so many other things. So what has really drawn me to him as a mentor? Well, perhaps it is his personality, the way that he can so easily make difficult situations come across as simple problems when faced with them head-on. I was moved by his innate ability to simply do what needed to be done, and make happen what needed to happen. These are some of the factors to which I believe he was truly able to accomplish so much, and in many ways create that life he wanted.
From working with Disney’s Imagineering Team to going to NASA and flying with zero gravity, Randy knew what he wanted and how to get there, and yet, even he attributed his success to support from mentors, family, and friends.
Dreaming big was something Randy Pausch was not afraid of doing. So often we limit ourselves to our incredible potential and possibilities because we simply do not allow ourselves to play big. Dreaming big is essential, it opens our minds to new ideas, we play harder, we work harder, and with big dreams, we give ourselves this permission to show up, to get a bit more curious, and in the process, grow in our confidence and connections.
When thinking back on my own wild and carefree dreams, I realize that not much has changed. I still want to travel the world, I still want to leave a legacy of my artistry, and I still want to stand in front of thousands of people doing what I love. I think more than ever it’s important as an entrepreneur to believe and work towards this “big” dreams. I’m not sure why we define some dreams as big and some dreams as small, because at the end of the day if it matters to you, it’s going to be big, and you might as well work towards it because the time will pass