The Dream is Free, The Journey’s Not

Why is it that we get in our own way as entrepreneurs? We have the ambition, the drive, we’re highly motivated to accomplish the goal. So what is it that holds people back?

I recently had the opportunity to meet with the leadership-great John C. Maxwell. John’s taught and authored over 60 books on leadership, including the bestseller, The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership I posed the question to him–what prevents us from following through on our dreams?

“I think that when we don’t follow through, we lack enough valid reasons to follow that dream,” he responded simply.  “If I don’t have a lot of valid reasons to pursue my dream, I’m likely to give it up because the journey to accomplish it is very difficult.”

John went on to articulate the difference between dream and doing in a way I’d never heard–the reason we like dreams is because they’re free. They don’t cost us anything, there’s no sacrifice involved. Dreaming is the easy part. Making it happen?

“We can sit around the table imagining all these great things, ‘Wow! Wouldn’t be great if I did this? Bought that?’ Well, the dream’s free–the journey’s not,” John emphasized. “When we start the journey, that’s when we begin to realize there’s a cost. And every time we have to pay another price, or experience another set-back, the troubles and trials try to pull our hand off of the dream we’ve been clutching.”

Unless we have a lot of good, valid reasons to continue pursuing our dream, more than one or two, we’re likely to give it up.

“Entrepreneurship has a lot of uncertainty,” John affirmed.  “The more valid reasons we have for why we want to be what we want to be, and why we want to accomplish what we want to accomplish, gives us the tenacity and holding power to stay true to that dream and not let go of it so quickly or easily.”



Watch the video version of my chat with John C. Maxwell below: