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You’ve probably heard some of those digital marketing/content marketing/general strategy experts out there who blurt out:
“Hope is not a strategy.”
Usually, they say (and I’ve said it before) that when somebody says: “I hope this will happen when I do [insert current strategy].”
And they are correct to a degree. Hope is not a strategy. But hope can be a big motivator. It’s what keeps us going. We are hopeful that this will work!
Hope and #dadlife
I’m hopeful that my two daughters will grow up to be successful in whatever they choose to be successful in. So that’s what keeps me going. If my wife and I don’t empower them to do that, I can have all the hope in the world and it won’t help get them there. My strategy breaks things down into manageable things and how I interact with them daily. Things I teach them. Things I allow them to participate in – like sports, for example. Maybe I should do a formal “Get your kids to adulthood strategy” document. Ha. I don’t have that. But ultimately, I have to have hope that it is possible.
Hope and personal/professional growth
In our professional areas, there has to be hope for growth, opportunity and fulfillment. I like to think of it like this:
(Expertise + relevant leadership) + collaboration = impact
We all want to make an impact. I actually believe that when people say they don’t want to, they usually just haven’t experienced how powerful that can be. And it doesn’t have to be impact at a global stage, which as cool and impactful as that would be – is highly unlikely for most of us. We can make an impact at much smaller scales. We can impact positively just one other person, a community or a field, for example.
When there’s no hope, we’ll have to figure out what we are actually trying to do (goals!) and then figure out how we’ll get to be hopeful.
This is one reason why business success stories – especially of those who have overcome a lot – are so powerful. Those hero stories instill hope and show that it’s possible to the rest of us.
Hope and health
Hope also is important when it comes to our health. When I weighed 330 pounds or so in the mid-2000s, I had to have hope to actually be able to lose all that weight. I had to believe it was even possible. And then I had to make a plan and come up with a strategy.
But strategies are worthless if we don’t believe they can be implemented. To do that we have to have hope. And, of course, the skill and stamina to implement them.
I saw plenty of stories from others who had lost weight. I modeled some, applied my own ideas and figured out what worked. In a nutshell it’s quite simple: Eat fewer calories. That’s quite hard – especially in the United States – where many meals are super high in calories. But I did it. I had hope, a strategy and then executed that strategy.
Having hope conclusion
Having the right kind of hope helps us be successful.
Hope + Strategy + Execution = Success
And once we complete that formula, we’ll go ahead and repeat it again.