How to Pick Up the Pieces of a Failed Dream
We all get knocked down by life.
We don’t always have control over that. We do have control over what we do about it.
We have control over what we do next.
What we do next is important.
Text of Video Follows:
So, what do you do when your dream fails? Well, I mean, you’ve got a couple of options. You could just forget about it and go back to whatever you were doing before; you can change the dream; or you can analyze your dream and see where you went wrong, learn from your mistakes.
So, for me, my dream was to come here, build games and make a living on that. What did I really want out of that? What I really wanted was to be happy and not have a lot of stress in my life. Well, what else can give me that? Now, I can still involve parts of the original dream and that’s no problem. But I wanted to be happy. And, I tell you, I found the secret to happiness. It’s so obvious and it might be a cliché, but it’s taken me a long time in my life to be happy. So, even if it is a cliché or even if it’s something you’ve had before; even if it sounds corny, I don’t care. I’ll take happiness where I can find it.
So, the secret to happiness is simply gratitude; to be grateful for things. And it’s not hard to find things to be grateful for in your life. I mean, I don’t know a lot about you, that’s true. But I know you’ve got internet, because you’re watching this right now. So if you’ve got internet, you have got access to more information than any other person in the history of the world. How about that? I mean, not since the great library of Alexandria that was built in 280 B.C. and burned down, I think, 46-48 A.D.; so it lasted longer than the U.S. has been around. It was a great store of knowledge and people would go from all over the known world or at least around the Mediterranean to look that stuff up.
When I was sitting pretty much right where I am now in rural Thailand 12 years ago, I think, when I first came here; and if I wanted a book in English, I could find them in the used stalls in Bangkok. But if I wanted a new book, like on the computers, I had to go to Singapore. I had to fly 4 hours to another country. That was the nearest place I knew of anyway to find a book. Now, I just simply download it. You’ve got more access to information than people did 12 years ago. You’ve got resources.
And I’m not saying there aren’t going to be times that you’re going to be down and that you’re not going to be sad. I mean, when you lose somebody, particularly through death or a breakup and such. But you do move on and you do find ways of being happy; and you do find ways of putting your dream back together because the only alternative is to not ever dream again. And if you’re like me, that’s just not possible. The only time I forget about the dream is if I’m really, really tired and I just need to sleep. But, boy, once I get some sleep and some coffee the next morning, it’s back, and my energy’s back. And you find ways to do it over and you find ways to do it simpler.
And that’s a lot what I’m doing right now, I’m listening to The Lean Startup. I think his name is Eric Ries and it’s talking about we learn from our mistakes; but he’s building projects – you learn from what you build. You only build enough to learn from, the minimal viable product. And then once you learn, then you decide what to build from there and I think that’s exciting. And I wanted a game system, originally, all download mobile from Apple and Google and that didn’t work out. So then I thought, well, I’ll put it online, like the games I used to build back at Guy Online when I was there. And I found plugins and everything with WordPress that made it really easy to put the forums and all that stuff. But it was still going to be a lot of work, even if it was going to be easier. And I didn’t need all that to be able to learn what to do or learn to get information from people; to learn how to do that.
So I’m building the bare minimum. I’m building just the games and I’ll have a bit of local high score storage or something; anything that’s really, really easy to do. But the main thing is to be able to put games online that work just as well as if you had downloaded it. And so that’s the only goal right now. I’m only doing a couple of hours a day on that because I’ve got other parts of the dream that had manifested; all that related to being happy.
So if your dream falls apart, redefine the dream. Keep the part that makes you happy. Find the essence of it. The essence for me was to be able to make games to show people and have them have fun doing it; and somewhere along the line make a living. So that’s the core dream and once you find that you define the core, then you go with that. So that’s my two cents for today. I hope this has been helpful to somebody. Thank you for listening.