Are you seeking something meaningful in life? This is a rather difficult question, especially when one has a lot of options available. Yes, freedom of choice is wonderful but occasionally it also comes with a burden. Should you start a business, work in a corporate, or perhaps work for a non-profit organisation? What subject should your work be about? Possibilities are endless.
Step 1: Know yourself
There is no single correct path in life. You make an informed choice, and then make the most out of it. So, instead of looking for an outside answers, start looking inside of you. What kind of person are you? For example, do you value being part of a larger network or rather part of a smaller one? Perhaps you value a mix of many things. Whatever it is, the process to figure it out should start within yourself. When you map down who you are and what you like, you start to get a better overview of the roles that might fit you.
Step 2: Take action
Once you know what you want to do, you have to take action. You will never be as young again as you are today and in five years you will recognise how many opportunities still existed today. A couple of years ago I was working on an idea for an app. Much later I realised that I could have started something similar to Snapchat: I wrote a business plan for an app called 48: send messages that are available for 48 hours or less before they self-destruct themselves. I thought this would help people to discuss sensible topics knowing that messages would not be there forever. I went to some events to meet programmers and started to build a network around the business idea but eventually, I stopped to believe in it and got distracted by something else. Snapchat became a big hit, maybe 48 could have been successful as well. So, when you have a great business idea and wrote a promising business plan scrutinised by experienced business people, you just need to continue to believe in the idea and take action. An unexecuted idea is worth nothing.
When you know what you want to do in life, action is required to get to the next step. Taking action is always important and that is how I later started Awaken&More. Many people looked funny at me when I talked about starting a non-profit consultancy for non-profit and social enterprises. Today, we are providing opportunities to more than ten Social Impact Consultants, have a couple of clients, and a partnership with EY Netherlands. I am particularly proud of the team we have build over the last months. Every team member contributed his or her part to our success and without the whole team, we would not have accomplished our current results. The people I met through Awaken&More were some of the most driven and good-hearted people I met during my life.
Step 3: Build a core
The next step is to surround yourself with like-minded people. Find people who think similar to you and how have the same goals and values in life. Whatever you do, you will meet people similar to you. When you do not know any people who are interested in your idea, go to business events. Be open, speak with people, and eventually you might meet other people with shared goals. Connect with them. Dispense the naysayer from your life and associate yourself with like-minded people. If you want to be a business leader, you cannot be around people who are constantly playing video games. Be around business leaders who also want to reach their full potential.