Everyone you know once had a dream, whether it was to become the world’s greatest football player to ever live or to be the CEO of a big company. It is part of human nature to want to achieve great things, whether it is for the sake of humanity or for personal success. We are obligated to follow these dreams and set an example for the generations that will come after us.
Being a Muslim should not prevent you from following your dreams. In fact, many Muslims from the past have defied many obstacles to achieve their goals. Islam and ‘following your dreams’ are not contradictory, unless you are meaning to do something harmful to someone or yourself.
However, excitement for your dreams can be easily crushed. Many people lose faith in themselves and stop pursuing their goals. And to our surprise, they have sometimes been held back by the people they personally knew. It is often the people closest to you who are most likely to discourage you or ridicule you. And because of your relationships with them, you tend to believe their opinions. However you have to have several important aspects that will make you successful in your goals. Here is a way of making your dreams come true.
1. Be the best in what you do
Do not just do your best, but try to be better than anyone else. That is the best way to innovate and be creative. If you are planning on designing an application or a website or you are going to start a small company with new market products, make sure you are offering something great. Many people tend to develop things that already exist but they make them slightly better. That way you are giving your potential customer the choice of either using a brand they are already familiar with or your unknown product or service. Make sure you are the competing for the win, not the draw.
2. Do not be afraid of criticism
People believe that criticism is something that will bring them down. In reality, it is a great opportunity to improve what you are offering. If you are already doing the best you can do, and there is room for improvement, you can only get better, obviously. Do not think that criticism is only meant to hurt you. If you can take that feedback in an objective and mature manner, you will be grateful for it in the future. You will see yourself growing to become a better and stronger person. And in return, your vision will be broadened.
3. Time management
Time is something we lose forever. It may sound crazy but every hour that passes, can never be retrieved. That is why, once you open a business or a service, make sure you utilise every working hour. That way you will have no regret and you will be more productive than ever. If you keep this philosophy of time in the back of your mind, you will start seeing things differently. You will start approaching things differently. Time management is important, do not postpone it.
4. Work hard, play little
Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Motors and SpaceX once said that ‘to be twice as good as someone who works 50 hours a week, you will need to work a 100 hours a week. That is simple math. In a year, you will have achieved twice as much, and at the same time, you will have learned twice as much as well’. Although Musk is one of today’s leading entrepreneurs in automotives and space programs, we can learn a lot from him that we can apply to our own areas today. I speak of myself if I say that I am too easily satisfied with my work. To be one of the greats, it is recommended to work really hard, without wasting time.
5. Appreciate the people around you
People sometimes do not realise that work relationships are important on a certain level. Your personal coach might be pushing you to your absolute limit, but remember that he is doing it for a reason. Success is rarely achieved in our comfort zones. That is why it is important to have a strong group of people who support you and can be a space to where you can fall back to, in times of need. Do not just criticise someone who has failed. Know when to compliment and reward them when they succeed. Make sure your voice is heard in not only bad times but also in good times. Be consistent.
It does not matter in what area you want to succeed, as long as you give your 100% and keep growing as a person, you will have nothing but success waiting for you. As Musk once said in a graduation speech to young graduates: ‘don’t be afraid to take risks, now is the time.’ So do not be afraid to take any chances, set a goal and work towards achieving it. I am sure you will either succeed or learn. Either way, you are not going to lose.