The definition of support is to ‘bear all or part of the weight of; hold up.’ As well as to ‘give assistance to; enable to function or act.’
Support on some level is necessary for success and good mental health. I know from experience how crippling it can be to not be supported, how difficult it is to move forward, how alone it feels. This hearkens back to the enabling to function or act definition. Without a support system, you can feel completely helpless, and feel like what you desire is impossible to come to fruition, or begin to believe that you just aren’t special enough.
The most successful people I’ve seen had the most unwavering support. Take Beyonce for example, whose parents went above and beyond to help showcase and develop the talent they saw in her. Or Tamera and Tia Mowry, whose parents moved across the country to give them better opportunities when seeing their passion for acting. These are wonderful and radical examples of support. If these women had different parents, quite possibly it would’ve taken years longer for them to realize their dreams, if at all.
Giving support doesn’t always mean quitting your job to help someone, moving states, or giving financially. Supporting someone can be going to their show, listening to their idea and giving them feedback, giving words of affirmation, helping them network, etc. I feel supported when I know my friends have opened my newletters and tell me they’ve enjoyed it. It helps to know that what I spend my time on isn’t falling on deaf ears. If you know someone in your life that is focused on achieving goals, take note of how you can be there for them, even in the smallest way. It truly makes a difference.
We can’t all have parents like the Knowles sisters and the Mowry twins, and in many cases, our parents actually stifle and discourage us. Many of us entrepreneurs know or learn soon enough that we shouldn’t count on our family or friends to be really interested in what our businesses are. Honestly, that’s something you learn to get over, because your family and friends aren’t usually your target market in the first place. However I do know the feeling of at least needing to be acknowledged by those you care about. But what if you don’t receive that? Where do you go for support? Where do you find someone else to believe in you so that you don’t feel like a crazy person with impossible dreams?
1. Join a group or class — Whether a Facebook group or an in-person Meetup group, seek people with similar interests, who are pursuing what you are.
2. Find a chuch — I’ve met a lot of good, supportive friends through church with similar interests. You know why? Because many modern, non-denominational churches have life groups. This means that you get together once a week for a period of time, depending on the area of interest the group covers. I’ve been in life groups for hiking, general board games, as well as one meant to build up the confidence of women. It is literally meant for you to find the people you can do life with.
3. Get a Mastermind Partner — This is someone that you can find in one of your groups, that you see yourself connecting with more personally. From there you can set up weekly calls to listen to each other’s brainstorms, get feedback, keep each other accountable, vent about what only you could to someone else who is striving for the same thing.
4. Hire a coach — Yes, sometimes you have to pay for support. If you didn’t have the good fortune of people constantly pushing you toward your dreams, this is an actual career for people. You need someone in your corner to cheer you on and challenge you. I remember the first time I got a coach, I was so hesitant at the investment, but I knew I couldn’t keep playing small anymore and holding onto fears. I cried on the phone with her, so relieved that I would finally have someone on my team challenging me and encouraging me, and it literally changed my life.
If you’re tired of being in the same place year after year, sleeping on a dream, afraid to move because no one around you gets you, be sure to do one of the above. There is more for you, and there are people who will truly believe in you and help you. It does not have to fall solely on you. When you have the right support, there is no limit to far you can go.
Looking to join a group now? My Facebook group Acting On Purpose is targeted at becoming stronger in self-love, taking steps toward fulfilling your purpose, and removing mental blocks that hold you back.
Ready to have that extra person on your side, nudging you forward? I’m a Certified Life Coaching Practitioner, and can help you take actionable steps toward actualizing your dreams. Learn more here!