Turning a dream into a reality can be a hard thing to do, especially when you don’t know how and where to start. Every person has been placed on this earth to fulfill a purpose, whether it’s becoming an entrepreneur, a musician or an educator -- but one obstacle that can get in the way of fulfilling a dream is finding the best approach to make it come to fruition.

1. Develop A Plan and Set Goals

A dream without a plan has no purpose. That’s why it’s important to develop a step-by-step plan to use as a guide to navigate you through your path to success. It’s necessary to identify the “why” of your vision, what the dream means to you, what you want to accomplish and what your end goal is. Create a timeline and outline the steps to your dreams in small tasks and make sure to be as detailed as possible. Missing this step could lead you off track, make you frustrated or discourage you. Don’t be that person. Be the goal-getter you are destined to be.

2. Take Action

There’s power in words, but they don’t mean as much if you don’t act on them. Figure out what skills or knowledge you need to complete your goal. Conduct research to help you determine what tools or knowledge you need to equip you for success. This can also help you identify the proper adjustments or changes you need to make your plan stand out from others. Once you’ve taken the time to think everything through, put action behind your steps so your dreams come to life. Don’t push things off until tomorrow, start TODAY.

3. Get A Mentor

It’s important to understand that there is always someone who has more expertise than you in the field of interest you are pursuing. That’s why a mentor is so necessary to have to provide advice and wisdom. Your mentor can be a great guide for you along your journey, they can also be your biggest supporter. Mentors are perfect for pitching ideas to and can help hold you accountable to your goals. Don’t think you have to go through this alone. Mentors are the perfect person to encourage and empower you.

4. Build A Team

Having people on your team with different skill sets are essential. You can’t do everything on your own.  Networking as well as sharing ideas and resources are the perks of having a team. They are also beneficial in tracking your progress, holding you accountable and accomplishing more during your week. Plus, your team members can give you that extra push when you need it and be a great source of motivation.

5.  Hustle and Motivate

Determination is key. Having a go-getter mindset is what separates leaders from followers. That’s why you need to work hard, make sacrifices, be aggressive and stay persistent. Although you may come across criticism and opposition, it’s important to not internalize it. Use it as motivation to prove people wrong. That mentality and fearless makes it easier for you to get through obstacles. Also remember that although it may be uncomfortable having to take risks, just know on the other side of fear may be your greatest blessing. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable and don’t give up without a fight. It’ll be worth it.

6. Learn from Your Mistakes

Understand that it’s okay to fail -- mistakes can be the best teachers. Learn from your downfalls, errors or missed opportunities for there are valuable lessons in those losses. However, it’s important to not beat yourself up and make sure to forgive yourself. You will come out stronger and smarter in the end.

7. Believe In Yourself

You are the only one with the power to set your dreams and make them your reality. Self Laziness, making excuses and lack of motivation are the main contributors to failure. You have to understand that having faith and patience will get you far in your journey as you continue to learn throughout the process. Enjoy putting the pieces of the puzzle. You will see the bigger picture in the end and just know it’ll all be worth it.

When it comes down to it all, you are the only one in charge of fulfilling your destiny. Take that vision and make it happen. It may be hard and there may be low times, but just know it’ll all be worth it end. The biggest reward is knowing that you didn’t give up.

Marlon Nichols is a prime example of someone who has persevered, against all odds, to accomplish his dreams and help others achieve theirs. Nichols is the co-founder of Cross Culture Ventures, a venture capital firm that invests in entrepreneurs creating technology and consumer products. Among them is Delane Parnell, founder and CEO of PlayVS, an esports league that gives high school students the chance to compete for a state championship. In the video below, watch basketball analyst Ros Gold-Onwude take a ride in the new Corolla Hybrid and chat with Nichols and Parnell on how working together has helped them each reach new heights.


This article was brought to you in partnership with Toyota.