Rocket Launch - Life lessons

December 20, 2016

What's your big dream?

30 years ago I visited Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. At the Visitor Centre they showed films of the Space shuttle launches which had been successfully operating since 1981. It dawned on me what a big dream, what a mission this had been and how much work and passion and money must have gone into this project.

What’s your big dream, your big idea? Is a desire for a project waking you up at night? How much energy and persistency are you willing to spend on this goal?

The rocket launch is a great metaphor of a life goal, a big dream, a break of a habit.

A goal takes planning. It starts with a vision that forms in your head. You can imagine how you are when you have reach the goal, how you look, how you feel. The satisfaction it brings to you, just like the space shuttle people imagined, how it would be to circle around the earth and successfully come back home.

5 important questions

  1. What are your first steps?
  2. What are your milestones?
  3. Where are the pitfalls?
  4. How will you know you are on track, measure?
  5. How will you correct and recover?

10, 9, 8, 7,.........Take off!

Once you are positioned to launch, there is no turning back. The new route will be explored with confidence, all boxes are ticked, all checks done. To be accountable you have told a few close people. You are full of energy. Have you ever seen those fuel tanks attached to a shuttle before the shuttle lifts off? They are huge! However, this is the energy you need to lift you up and away from your current position. This is the energy you need to leave the orbit called comfort zone or procrastination. Procrastination is equal to the force of gravity to the shuttle. Then there is lots of smoke. You seem unable to see clear and you have to remind you of your core, your inner strength. All checks done!

You are trembling, like the rocket is shaking, trembling because we are fearful as it’s the comfort zone we are leaving a zone we are so much used too. And then we are off. With every mile you are rising, you become lighter, you need less fuel. When the first fuel tank goes off, you feel free and you accelerate towards your goal. First milestone reached. Phase 2 has just been fired up and by now it’s feeling already successful, the past is behind and nothing is going to stop you until you reach your goal.

Reflect and be grateful

When you have arrived, you look back at your journey, the work, the planning that has gone in it, the energy it took you to achieve your goal. Like the astronauts looking down at the beauty of the earth, you feel a deep satisfaction of the growth you’ve achieved. You take a few circles; you are proud and grateful that your mission has been successful. Please spare a few thoughts on the people who have helped you along the way. The bigger the dream, the bigger the team! How are you going to thank them when you are back? Then it’s time to land. You steered the ship through unknown territory.

This is your NEW comfort zone, your new normal. You are curious and ready again to learn, plan and launch your next endeavour.


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