Have a dream, plant the flag, go! Planting the flag is a necessary step in making a dream a reality. Too often we have dreams, but never get traction. We spin our wheels in a mud pit of excuses. Then we get stuck, and go nowhere.
My writing time is on Sunday evenings. When I positioned myself at the laptop, fully prepared to go in a completely different direction, it hit me. Exactly one year ago today I sat down to write the very first Leadership and Main post. It is easy to look back fifty-two posts later and forget the spinning of my own wheels that almost never started this project.
It landed on my heart to share a little bit about that journey and the lessons learned in the case you have a dream you have failed to plant the flag on. If you are spinning your wheels to write a blog, launch a podcast, start a business, make a career change, or chase whatever your dream may be, let’s dive into six ways we can plant the flag.
Just Plant the Flag
I had dreamed of launching a blog that would inspire leaders in local communities to better others and the world they lived in for years. Finally, during the first wave of COVID-19 a friend of mine, Ken Kisiel, helped me develop the site. This was the early part of 2020. I didn’t fully plant the flag, just held it in my hands.
It wasn’t until I was having breakfast with my pastor, Mike Linch, later that year that I decided to stop spinning my wheels. He shared the concept of planting the flag with me. He said, “you just have to plant the flag.” A concept a friend of his had shared with him to inspire him to start his podcast, Linch with a Leader.
The planting of my flag was in the form of a social media post. I built a graphic that said, coming January 4, 2021, Leadership and Main. It was planted, there was no going back! Friends and family started subscribing and following on social media. With their support, the commitment was made, I had no intention of not fulfilling it. Just plant the flag.
The Time Is Now
Our mud pit of excuses is filled with time. Here is a reality. Any person that has changed the world had the same twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week that we all do. Time is a factor, but not the excuse.
Our time is the most valuable, most demanded, but the most limited resource we have. The commitment to move forward now, gets your dreams unstuck. Stop wasting your limited time, plant the flag. The time is now.
Resolutions Are Not Dreams
We just celebrated a new year. During this time of year, we are conditioned to believe this is the one time of the year to start something new. A new way of life, set a new goal, you name it. We make our new year’s resolutions.
Language Arts was not my strong suit, but bear with me. Let’s break the word resolution apart. Re is a prefix, that means again. A quick Google search of the solutions produces, “a means of solving a problem.” So basically we are solving a problem, again. Which fits most of the new years resolutions I have made in my forty years!
Dreams are not problem based like resolutions. They are visions of what could be. The destination to where you want to go. Dreams do not magically become a reality on January 1 every year, they become a reality when you plant the flag. The time is now.
Perfection is Paralyzing
In his book Dream Big, Bob Goff says, “don’t feel bad about not being perfect before you start.” I am a self-aware perfectionist. It is how I am wired. Many times, we do not plant the flag on our dreams because we want everything to be perfect first.
Let me let you in on a secret. Perfection is not relatable. If you are seeking to develop content, a business, or product to attract perfect people, it is an extremely limited audience! Our imperfections are what others relate to. Your imperfect dream can create a deep connection with other imperfect people.
I spent years trying to get the concept perfect in my head. No blog. After the site was built, I spent months trying to come up with the perfect content to launch it. No blog. It wasn’t until I planted a flag draped with imperfect content did the dream get rolling. Do not left perfection paralyze you.
Plant it for Others
While it is your dream you are planting the flag on, plant it for others. Dreams should be impactful to others. They are built on the foundation of burdens (not problems) you carry to better others and the world you live in.
I planted the flag for two reasons. One, to give my children something to read one day that tells them who their father was, his intentions, and what he believed. Two, to share all the things that people who Interceded my life along the way poured into me.
When you use blogs and social media it is easy to get caught up in the analytics. How many reads per week, how many subscribers, how many shares, and etc. If I pay too close attention to the numbers, there can be disappointment. I drift from the purposes listed above. It is the reply backs from a subscriber, the comments on posts, the testimony in a share, or the in-person conversations of how a blog post impacted and inspired them. Plant the flag on your dreams for others.
Find Others to Help
Ever tried to stick something into hard ground? Its tough. Sometimes you need help from a friend or friends to plant the flag. The people that see more in you than you see in yourself.
There are so many people that have helped in this journey. Whether it is guiding me on how to develop a blog over lunch, inspiring me to plant the flag over breakfast, providing encouraging feedback, sharing the content, or being my weekly proofreader, my gratitude for you runs deep. Find others to help you plant the flag on your dreams.
It has been humbling this year to have the ability to reach people across the United States and even in other countries with this project. I could have never imagined having 250 direct subscribers in addition to hundreds of social media followers that have an interest in my dream.
I want you to know this as we close. It took me a while to plant the flag, but I am so glad I did. I had a leader in our local community text me this Fall. I had spoken to his team earlier in the year about a post I wrote on Interceders as they prepared for the upcoming year. He shared with me that he attended the funeral of someone’s parent that was in the room that day. The person used the concept to honor their parent at the funeral.
That kind of stuff keeps me coming back for more. It is also a stark reminder that if I failed to plant the flag, someone else may not have had the words that day. What does this world currently lack because you have not planted your flag? Get to planting.