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Navigating the Dream Space (Level 2 and Beyond)
To boldly go where no person has gone before
"Your level of success will rarely exceed your level of personal development, because success is something you attract by the person you become." -Jim Rohn
To Boldly Go
When you follow your dreams, you need to lead yourself. To lead, you need a mission and a plan.
To make it through the long journey, we need a sense of progress. We create challenging but attainable milestones to give us a sense of accomplishment. Each milestone is a new level and a change of perspective, like looking back at the Earth from the lunar surface.
Last year I wrote an article titled How to Navigate the Dream Space. In that article I wrote about false progress, fuzzy goals, and creating a mastery system that almost guarantees success.
Here are some of the highlights:
I spent many years experimenting with different projects, but I never defined an end goal. Years slipped away. It felt like I was working, but I didn't have anything to show for all the work — just a bunch of tasks checked off a list.
I finally came to the conclusion I needed to come up with a plan that would ensure I would have some tangible wins. I wanted these tangible wins to be assets that I could continue to use year after year. I was tired of creating things that had no long-term value. I needed to come up with something that would almost guarantee my success.
I began to design my own path to mastery. I created four levels of achievement loosely based on the concept of the college degree system such as associate, bachelors, masters, and PhD.
Here is the criteria I created to achieve Level 1:
LEVEL 1 (Associate’s Degree)
1500 hours of deliberate study and writing (this is mostly reading books and writing articles and newsletters).
Two (2) digital products (First edition eBooks).
Audience Base: 10
I also said…
I’ll let you know when I complete Level 1. I will print a certificate of achievement and celebrate with a fine dinner. Then I will decide if I choose to continue to Level 2.
Level 1 Achieved
As of May 1, 2023, I have completed all the requirements for achieving Level 1 of my dream.
I haven’t celebrated with a dinner yet. I still need to print a certificate. But I did make a decision. Part of accomplishing each level is making a decision — do you want to commit to the next level? My answer is yes.
So, my Level 2 of success mastery is:
LEVEL 2 (Bachelor’s Degree)
3000 hours (cumulative total) of deliberate study and writing (this is mostly reading books and writing articles and newsletters).
Four (4) digital products (cumulative total of first edition eBooks completed).
Audience Base: 100
Level 1 was about building a practice of consistent learning and creating.
Level 2 will require more effort and focus on building an audience.
What’s Your Next Level?
"If you don't design your own life plan, chances are you'll fall into someone else's plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much." -Jim Rohn
It's sometimes hard to envision the future. It’s difficult to clearly define the person you will become on the journey of following your dreams. How do I know what I will be interested in at level 2, 3 or 4, and beyond?
I solved this problem for myself by focusing on what I can control; the effort and the significant creations.
If I require 1500 hours of study and creating, most certainly, without a doubt, I will grow.
If I require two significant works of creation, I must create something (I don’t define what).
If I define a minimum audience base, then I ensure I am having an impact. I must be able to measure that impact in an objective way. Working without receiving feedback is risky if done too long.
By creating levels based on effort (time learning and time creating), I don’t have to know exactly who I become at each level. I do know that a significant effort invested in yourself over time will create transformation, guaranteed. And finally, by including a measurement of impact (audience base), I will confirm the time I invested is worthwhile.
Is your current level defined? What is your next level? How can you design challenging levels that give you a sense of direction, accomplishment, new perspective, and ultimately lead you to achieving your dreams?
Breaking your dream into levels of achievement has many benefits:
It provides structure. Some people might not need structure, but I do. Otherwise it would be overwhelming.
It provides direction. The destination is continual growth, impact, and abundance, level by level.
It provides an objective way to mark progress (are we there yet?).
It provides tangible evidence of work.
It provides a sense of accomplishment (Done. What’s next!).
It gives us opportunities to celebrate our achievements along the way. Celebration is a must!
Each “Level” serves as a test. If you make it through, and still want to continue, then you have high confidence that you have found the right thing to commit to. If you choose not to go forward, you have effectively ruled out this path. Either way, it’s a win.
So, what’s next? Level 2 of course. I’ll let you know when I get there. And of course, I will print a certificate of achievement and celebrate with a fine dinner. Then I will decide if I want to continue to Level 3.
I wish you many celebrations on your journey!
To your success!
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