“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
At a glance, it may seem as if the logical thing to do is just follow the trail that others have carved, and sure, there may be times when you should do that. However, think what you may be missing by following someone else’s path.
The One Who Goes First Sets the Standard
The person who goes first, sets the pace and creates the original benchmark, or set of goals, for the people who follow. For example, Henry Ford created the a manufacturing process that companies worldwide are still trying to replicate.
The One Who Goes First Enjoys the Adventure
Being the first one to do something is exciting, and fun, and an adventure. Following may have the advantage of using an easier path, but the leader gets the bragging rights, the excitement of being first, and gets to enjoy the most success.
The One Who Goes First Gets to Help Others
Helping others makes us feel good – it’s just part of being human that we (for the most part) enjoy the way it feels (emotionally) when we reach out to help someone else succeed.
Forging your own path is pretty likely to give you more of a feeling of accomplishment than you’re ever going to get by following someone else’s trail. And here’s the real difference between making your own trail and following someone else’s…
Should you have others you look up to and ask for advice? Absolutely! Should you follow the advice blindly without considering how it meshes with your goals and existing know-how? Probably not!