In the past few months, several people have laid this adage on me: "People are like sheep. They love to follow."
Thinking back, I definitely struggled between following the herds and doing my own thing--whether in high school, college or in my career path. Most of the time, I tried to create my own life, even at the cost of being left confused and unsure. No, I didn't join a sorority when my best friends did. But yes, I did let my high school friend invite the public school kids over for a week long, school-cutting party.
So it was interesting to hear Anat Lecher speak at the 0260 Entrepreneur Conference about how visionaries live and succeed. "They swim in their own river," she said, which stuck a chord with me (even though I hate to swim). Anat talked about the idea of being your own compass and going with the flow.
Here is how she described visionaries:
They Live With Half Knowledge
They live and are comfortable with uncertainty, which reminds of me of Pema Chodron's book. They don't worry when they don't have all the answers. They glide with the unknown, because from there comes the best opportunities.
They Know Themselves
Maybe they are not 100 percent sure, but they have a good feeling about their life's work. They listen to their intuition and the clues around them. They know themselves well enough to realize that if they steer in a different direction, they're still on the right track.
They Have an Abundance--Not Scarcity--Mindset
They balance giving and taking. They give because they know there is enough to go around, and more. They don't believe in scarcity, which leaves you resistant and constricted (not to mention uptight).
They Live in a State of Flow
They become immersed in their favorite activities and time doesn't matter. No one has to motivate them, they just go with it. Nothing can stop them. They also know they will bang into rocks along the way, and are comfortable with failure.
They Make Their Own Luck
Visionaries are lucky because they have an ear and eye opened to opportunities and can adjust to pursue them. They expect good fortune and can turn any lemon into lemonade. They wake up feeling fortunate and luck comes their way.
Some of the greatest achievers lived with these perspectives. Together, they make a great recipe for life. I might be afraid of the ocean, but swimming in my own river could be a great place to start.