Humans are very good at modeling themselves after others.
The trick, it seems, is whether you think about how you model.
If you don’t consider who you want to become, chances are you’ll model yourself by chance. And that can often lead to disappointment. It can work out fine. It can rarely work out to make your dreams come true.
We often become our parents. Maybe with a few slight changes. Both in the way we parent and the way we work and even the way we spend our free time. And in most cases, that’s totally fine.
Sometimes it’s almost an evil blessing to have very bad parents. It can turn the child against that model as they look for something better, much better to become.
In other situations it can be limiting. If you have the audacity to want to become somebody great, you have to look beyond your parents for someone to model yourself after.
For many kids this involves sports at a young age. But if you’re from a small town it’s difficult to find someone from your small town that became a professional athlete of some kind. I remember thinking about that as a kid.
It’s very difficult to become the first to do anything. Especially the first from your local area. But the reality is that many people become something from local areas just like yours. I remember someone told me as a kid that I didn’t need to find another professional athlete from my town. I just had to look for professional athletes from other small towns.
I never became a professional athlete. I came across another area that provided fulfillment and that was business. So as I became more curious about that I started looking at others that were in business. What they did at work. How they did their work. The process was appealing to me. I started reading business biographies and getting especially interested in what those people did in the early stages of their careers.
I still read biographies today and it’s interesting. I’m a little ways along in my career, but the areas I pay attention to most in those books are the ones that are a few steps ahead of where I am today.
I’m modeling myself after these people. Looking for the roadmap to reach where they are.
Chances are nearly 100% that somebody has done what you want to do before. Somewhere in the world. Likely, it’s happened many times. They might be a little different than you, but there is almost always no reason that you can follow their path. Slightly altered to fit your view of the world.
And even if you are some kind of unicorn that has discovered something totally new…what’s the worst that can happen by pursuing it and becoming the first?