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Full Dream Ahead

Two motivational authors reveal the three secrets to making your entrepreneurial dreams a reality.

For more than a quarter century, Mark Victor Hansen, co-author of Chicken Soup for the Soul (Health Communications), and Robert G. Allen, author of Nothing Down for the 90s (Simon and Schuster), have delivered powerful messages of possibility and action that have helped create startling change for thousands of entrepreneurs. Their books and associated series have been published in 39 languages and have sold more than 85 million copies. Their new collaborative work, The One Minute Millionaire: The Enlightened Way to Wealth (Harmony Books), is already a bestseller.

To help even more business owners achieve their dreams, Entrepreneur recently had a conversation with Hansen and Allen about their three secrets to success.

Your first secret is, "One must have a great, big dream, big enough to include a lot of other people." What does it mean to include other people in your "big dream"?
Mark Victor Hansen: Your dream is a big, audacious goal where no one is worse off because of it.

Robert G. Allen: It scares you, because you know you can't do it by yourself. It forces you to push the envelope of your own beliefs and get massively creative.

Hansen: It scares and excites you at the same time!

Allen: Someone should be able to pull this off-and you realize, "Uh oh, it's me!"

How does a dreamer gain confidence?
Allen: It starts by defining, What is my mission in life? When I'm wealthy, what will I give to? You set that as your goal.

Hansen: Your mission opens up a positive attitude and the abundance the universe [has to] offer. It starts with the spiritual inside that allows you to tough it out.

When I work with people to achieve their dreams, I begin by having them define their intent.
Hansen: We agree with you. The intangible creates the tangible. The young entrepreneur has the ambition, imagination . . .

Allen: Desire, goals, passion-all that is intangible.

Hansen: But that turns into tangible-money, results, success and a profitable business.

How can a person discover his or her big dream?
Hansen: Have someone ask you the same question 50 times: "What is God's destiny for you?" For the first time in a person's life, they get clear.

Allen: Then refine your vision by discovering the genius that resides in each of us. Have someone ask you: What are you passionate about? What are your talents? What is important to you? What do you think you are supposed to be doing on this planet? The answers will uncover a common thread. This is the area you ought to be spending more time on-your genius! Then ask, What is the million-dollar idea that fits with my genius?

Some emerging entrepreneurs are scared to talk about their big dreams. Should we tell others about our intent?
Hansen: Absolutely! Your intent is your guidance system to get you from here to there.

Allen: Walk into your vision by sharing it with others. This is what inspires you to go through the tough times.

Do I start out small or go for my big dream right away?
Hansen: Little shots or big shots-start at the level you are at.

Allen: Find a little dream you can achieve, and learn from experience. Then grow a big company.

What if I don't have experience? Should I go for it anyway?
Hansen: Yes! Other people with expertise can help you. You need to orchestrate the vision. Brian Epstein couldn't play any instruments, but he made the Beatles the biggest band in the world.

Any suggestions on how to stay motivated to achieve a big dream?
Allen: If you need help to stay motivated, you haven't found your authentic big dream.

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This article was originally published in the February 2004 print edition of Entrepreneur's StartUps with the headline: Full Dream Ahead.

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