Think BIG

Think Big Graphic Design Blender

Last Friday I was one of many speakers at a Communication Conference at my Alma Mater. Having graduated less than two years ago from the school, it was wonderful to go back and visit with faculty and students.

In addition to being a presenter, I also had a chance to be an observer–a student again.

And I learned some really cool things from some excellent people.

There’s one lesson that I took away from the entire day of presentations as a whole that I want to share with the GDB community today.

As I attended a few different seminars, it was obvious that each presenter did one thing that really made them successful. They thought BIG!

Think big.

Do you ever get caught up in the idea that you’re just one person (or one small team of designers)?

Sometimes I find myself wishing I could build something bigger, something more influential.

Often, I find myself wishing I could increase site traffic, build revenue more quickly, or find more clients on a regular basis.

Then I stop myself and essentially tell myself something that, until a few days ago I didn’t realize was holding me back: “But you’re just one person. You’re just one guy who runs a small blog. You don’t have the time or man-power to make something BIG happen.”

Have you ever found yourself thinking like that?

It’s an easy thing to fall into: complacency.

The easy path is to follow the status quo, stick to a routine and don’t disrupt the system.

But it won’t get you anywhere!

So stop selling yourself short. Think BIG.

Thinking big…

Thinking big means something different for everyone. For some, thinking big is simply cutting the cords with your cubicle and finally taking the leap to freelance like you’ve always wanted to. (Remember though, there’s nothing wrong with a full-time job.)

For others, it could mean going for the really big clients–flying to New York and pitching their services to some seemingly-unattainable client.

And for others of you, thinking BIG could simply mean starting a blog, youtube channel, or podcast where you can work to reach and help hundreds of thousands or even millions of people.

The best tool you’ve got

Maybe you’ve heard people say things like “time is the great equalizer.”

They’re right.

Big companies, more established bloggers, more experience freelancers–they all have more resources than you might right now.

But, just like you, they only have 24 hours in a day.

And it’s what they choose to do in those 24 hours that really makes a difference.

Are you spending your time thinking big and then reaching for the stars!?

I plan to “think big” more and follow the status quo less.

To think big, plan big!

Big thinkers also have to be big planners, though. So beware of big dreams that you’re not willing to put your blood, sweat, tears and brainpower behind.

I dare say this is one thing that has held me back in the past (but not anymore!):

I’ve been afraid of thinking big because I was afraid of the work I’d have to put behind it in order to reach my lofty goals.

That ends today.

Are you with me!?

If you’re tired of the same ol’ progress and moderate success, then join me TODAY and make the commitment to start thinking big(ger).

No matter where you are in your freelance career (or any other path you’re taking), decide today to push yourself and get more out of life.

If you’re on board, leave a comment on this post and then share this post out to as many people as you can via twitter, facebook, linkedin, email, etc. We’ll show the world that we have a voice and that we’re ready to THINK BIG!!

(PS: If you’re reading this in an email or RSS reader and need some easy sharing buttons, click here and use the buttons at the bottom of the post.)

About Preston D Lee

Preston is a web designer, entrepreneur, and the founder of this blog. @prestondlee

Comments

  1. really nice article.Going to inspire many.

  2. Another great post, Preston! My favorite line is, “it’s what they choose to do in those 24 hours that really makes a difference.” Those are some motivating words—I’M IN! :)

    I believe I’ve said this before in a previous comment, but your posts seem to be spot-on with what’s going on with me and my growing freelance business. Recently I’ve been “thinking big” and growing my business into my dream career. Something that I can fully support myself with and do what I love to do… design!

    I’m with Preston—If you have a crazy idea or something you’ve always wanted to do, DO IT! You know what they say, “A year from now you will wish you had started today.” :)

    • Preston D Lee says:

      Brent,
      I’m so glad that what we write about here helps you and lots of other designers do what they love!

      I love the quote you shared! There are a few things I wish I would have started a year ago for sure!!

  3. Pres,

    I’m in. Your talk was amazing by the way. Lately I have been inspired to do more with my time and talents, and think a little differently about how I support my family. I am trying to become as confident as you are. Wish me luck!

    • Preston D Lee says:

      Ky!!!
      You’re a total example to me. Best of luck in thinking BIG! And thanks so much for showing up at the conference–it was a GREAT surprise!!

  4. It’s always good to be reminded that everyone starts out small and what makes the difference is attitude. Great post.

  5. Thanks Preston! After a less than average creative day the timing of this post really resonated with me. I am on board! I too love the line “it’s what you choose to do in those 24 hours that really makes the difference”.

    • Preston D Lee says:

      Vanessa,
      That seems to really be resonating with a lot of readers. But it’s true. Time can be your friend or enemy. May it be your friend as you build your big dreams!

  6. Some great advice, (and what a cool experience, getting to go back to your school as a presenter just two years after graduating.)

    I agree with you 100% about thinking big. That means taking risks too. Yes, they should be educated risks, but risks nonetheless. As the cliche goes, go big or go home.

  7. Preston,

    I’m in!

    When I brainstormed for my business name, I did some thinking big. I want my business to sound like the cream of the crop, like clients should be lining up to ask me to work for them, and I thought Greer Genius really portrayed a sense of confidence and professionalism that might make potential clients impressed.

    I also have some lofty goals for a side project that I’d love to reveal on GDB in the near future…

    Love the 24-hour line…what you choose to do with the time you have is the most important choice of all.

    Great post!

    • Preston D Lee says:

      April,
      You’re already doing great and BIG things! Thanks so much for the wonderful contributions you make to this blog. We wouldn’t be the same here without you!

  8. My big thinking has less to do with my design business and more to do with one of my blogs (which is not graphic design related). I want to sell it, and I have a huge buyer in mind that I believe could truly benefit from owning the URL and continuing what I have started. So I’m putting in the work to try to make the sale happen. Lofty goal? Yes. Possible? Absolutely! And I’m believing that with everything in me :)

  9. Great post, Preston! I’m with you, this year has definitely been a “think big” one for me. I’ve decided to get serious about marketing and growing, so I’m now advertising with Yelp and a local magazine, which is pretty scary to me because so far all my clients have been regulars. Stepping out and putting yourself out there isn’t easy, but I’d say to anyone on the edge to just go for it :) The worst that can happen is that the answer is “no,” which is what it is anyway if no action is taken.

    • Preston D Lee says:

      Sheila,
      Very well-put! I feel like people (myself included) are too afraid of “no.” Part of thinking big is getting over that fear. Best of luck to you!

    • Sheila,

      I know how you feel! My boyfriend is heavily responsible for my action over inaction with this saying I’ve got to share with you:

      “The answer is always no until you ask.”

  10. When I’m not working on one of my client’s project, or not making music (which means I’m probably eating), I read inspirational interviews, watch videos or movies. And this blog became one of my goto sites for that.

    Think big.

  11. Thinking big is not only good because you can achieve big things and make more money. It’s also good because if you may fail to do it (let’s say you create a top notch design for a company which can pay $5000 for it, but they reject it), you may decide to put the bar for just a little bit lower for now, and then you probably already over delivered (for example, you give the same design for a smaller company who can only pay $2500, but they’ll be amazed of what you did).

  12. Tanae Sorenson says:

    Being a communication student I frequently go to Comm Day, but I must admit that I was very excited for this semester and your presentation did not disappoint! Preston, since your presentation on campus the gears of “big thinking” have constantly been turning in my head. For weeks I have been fantasizing about what I can share with the world and racking my brain on creating a blog topic. YOU did this to me! I have never before desired to blog nor been so excited about it’s possibilities. Thank you! I almost went to talk to you in person to ask for blogging advice, but I’m sad to say that I let the long line of students wanting a free cd and my ego deter me from doing so. Regardless, thank you for daring me to dream big and for dusting the “I’m a college student with no impressive skill and no time for blogging.” cobwebs off. I know only hope that I can solidify my ideas and make them tangible too.

  13. Hi there again Preston,

    thank you for your absolutely motivational tips and newsletters! – I’m less than a start up, but I am subscribed and I read them like drinking water! ;)

  14. This is great! I just recently found your blog and I find it really inspiring. Thanks for what you do. I have already decided that 2013 was going to be the year that I really Dream BIG! I’m increasing my services to include EGD… something I never thought I could manage on my own, but I’m going to do it! I’ve also decided to start blogging again (soon) since more people were reading it than I realized were. Great to hear that others are just as motivated to follow their dreams.

  15. I am currently in the process of trying to make the jump from working a full-time corporate job and running my own (full-time, takes up every other second of my day) design business. I really like this post and your other one on How I took my design hobby to the next level. There is so little out there to really walk you through the process of going from a hobby/side job to a full-time business. Thank you for your inspiration.

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