“To achieve great things you have first to believe it.” – Arsene Wenger (Manager, Arsenal football team)
When I was young, most of what I did was on faith. I went to school, took up hobbies and committed a large number of facts to memory because that’s what everyone did and if everyone did it, it had to be right.
As I grow older, logic – not belief – is starting to drive my decisions. If I needed to get from point A to point B, I spent a lot of time planning until I clearly understand every step on the way from A to B. There is a problem with this.
Most worthwhile achievements in life require belief when starting out.
- Meditation has no goal posts and no logical way to get from life on mental steroids to one pointed concentration and peace. The first steps necessarily have to be on faith. As you move forward, you receive benefits and your faith is rewarded but in the beginning, all you have is faith.
- Entrepreneurship is another example where I have spent a long time trying to figure out the logical steps to succeed. My logic, I have found out, cannot bridge the gap between start-up to success. There is a huge chasm, where I am expecting a bridge. It requires a bit of faith and craziness to venture down this path.
- As the pace of change around us accelerates, I will have to go through several careers before retiring. Each career change, I know, is a long process of feeling my way through, being guided by belief and visioning rather than a solid bridge of facts and figures on which to cross.
- Falling in love requires faith and trust as we start out. There is no logical path to happiness in love. And despite 500 days of summer, its still worth it.
As we grow older, we lose the ability to trust and the each worthwhile goal we pursue is preceded by longer and longer periods of indecision. This is just filler and holds you back from having a strong, passionate start. Belief helps.
- Belief gives you the intensity in the starting phases of working towards a goal
- It sees you through the “flat” phases in your journey to achieve something big
- It allows you to connect and share your journey with other people – the most tightly knit groups form around a core set of beliefs
Flaunt your beliefs, no matter how crazy they seem. They are yours and as long as your beliefs lead to a better place for yourself and others, feel free to act on them.
However, the trick to be effective as you progress, is to always be looking out for feedback that proves or disproves the belief. Being aware of how our actions are validating the belief (or not) will help keep us on the right track and generally weed out beliefs like the earth being a flat plate supported on a tower of turtles. Acknowledging and examining your beliefs also allows you to deal with them objectively.
The best way to achieve great things then, is to start with belief and burning desire but tread on the path with awareness. All the best with your journey!