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Leaving any kind of mark takes perseverance, grit, and determination. It's not easy, and that's why most people never do it, but it's worth it! Here are my top 3 tips to leave your mark:
1) Define what leaving your mark looks like.
I've found it so true in my own life that vague goals or ideas produce vague results. Your vision and definition of leaving your mark should be crystal clear; not knowing where you want to go in life will only leave your spinning your wheels. I encourage you to make a vision board in which you have pictures of your goal along with a description so you can easily visualize it. Look at this multiple times a day every day to breed a constant focus on this thing that you want to achieve. After all, your life moves towards the things you focus on. This is called the Law of Attraction. You can read more about it below:
Remember, everyone was made to leave their mark in their own special way, so never compare your dream to someone else's. For one person this may be starting a charity that provides shelter for the homeless. For someone else, it may mean becoming a motivational speaker. And especially don't compare your dream to someone else's because it receives less of the spotlight than theirs. God's purpose for one's life comes in all sizes and shapes.
I also want to urge you to never do something for money or the spotlight, because your dream should be about more than just you. You can be focused on something, and at the same time not have your heart in it. If you have clearly defined what you want, and you go after it with all your heart no matter how insurmountable it may seem, you will be unstoppable!
2) Develop yourself consistently.
Become more than this dream that you're seeking to accomplish. Improve yourself first, and the outcomes in your life will follow suit.
You may ask, what does developing myself entail?
It depends on what you want to achieve. Once you've defined the dreams and goals you have, figure out what kind of person you need to become to attract them. For example: If you want to become a preacher, you're going to need to develop not only speaking skills, but social skills as well because you will often be chatting with people outside of the time you spend ministering to them.
Listening to inspiring and motivational teaching daily is also very helpful. Now I know we're all very busy in today's society, but before you say you don't have time, I want to suggest that you listen to inspirational and motivational teaching while doing everyday things, like brushing your teeth or doing laundry. Listening in your car on your way to work or wherever is also an option. Doing this consistently has worked very well for me, and my life has improved significantly because of it. It's now a habit (a slightly addictive one) and now I can hardly go 2 or 3 days without listening to my favorites - Les Brown, Eric Thomas, or Terri Savelle Foy. Their words oddly comfort me.
Working on yourself every single day is ideal, but we all get caught up in the rat race of life. If you aren't able to do something every day, a few consistent times a week is better than never. But the key word is consistent, because the more you do it, the better you'll get at it, and it'll no longer feel like a chore, like it may at first.
3) Stand out and do you.
Normal people don't change the world. You cannot leave your mark being like everyone else. It's just not going to happen. A mark is something that is used to distinguish things. You have to be different to leave your mark. You have to be yourself to leave your mark. It's what gets you noticed.
Additionally, don't be intimidated and compare yourself to the great things that others are doing. Instead, be inspired by it, and know that you can do something as great as they did too! For the longest time, I was addicted to being miserable and sad and comparing myself to the successes of others. I eventually realized that this state of mind would never bring me to my dreams. I had to break out of this habit, because I realized I want to be happy, and not miserable for the rest of my life. I don't have to be jealous of teens who live rich lives, or teens who have 2 living parents; not having these have made my life somewhat more difficult, but there are parts of my life I would never want to give up. I have learned to be at peace knowing that I was made for a bigger purpose than to wallow in misery comparing myself to others. Remember, you don't have to have some giant dream or do something grand to make an impact. Sometimes the smallest marks make the biggest impact.
In the long term, if you do nothing but simply #1 or #2 on this list, you'll stand out from most of people, because the masses do not have clear cut goals, nor are they willing to consistently work to improve themselves. Though, this only a start. It takes time, determination, perseverance, and grit, but know you can leave any marks on the world that you want to make!
Written by Jacqueline Ferrari