Daniel and his daughter Lilly
My journey started a few years ago when I came to London from Germany. It felt like quite an exciting time with lots of changes and I could see lots of new possibilities in a big city like London. I felt quite confident and had a good level of energy and made the decision to start my own business. I thought I had this amazing technical idea which would definitely work out… I started to put all my energy into it to make it happen. Initially it was really good fun, it felt like I was building something new which would give me freedom and independence, it would allow me to make my own decisions and to make money while learning a lot about technology and business at the same time.
My plan was to make this happen relatively quickly and then I could focus more on my relationships, with my girlfriend (who’s now my wife) and building up new friendships. That at least was the plan (if you could really call it a plan…).
After months and months of effort I started to feel that something wasn’t right without fully understanding what it was. My initial level of energy dropped and I wasn’t sure anymore if this was the right way to go forward and if I would ever make it happen.
It took me quite a while to realise that this way of moving ahead and being on my own just didn’t work at all and that it wasn’t good for me and also not good for others around me.
The hardest part was to accept this, to detach from my approach, to admit to myself that I had screwed this up spectacularly, that it’s completely ok and to see it as a good learning experience of how not to do it…
Despite this experience there was still something in me that wanted to give it another try and to do something different with my life and to make something happen. A year later I got a flyer for an organisation and I thought I’d give it a go and see what it was all about.
This was the start of my journey with Lighthouse International and when I met other people who also tried to start their own business I realised that I’m not the only person who was struggling with this goal!
Through Lighthouse I started to learn about personal development, personal growth, leadership, responsibility and relationships and how this is all related to starting a business and is also related to my life in general. I started to read books about these topics and I joined an awesome program called LifeQuest which helped me a lot. I got introduced to mentoring and how a mentor can help me to progress and see things differently, to make new realisations; to move forward and slowly but surely overcome my fears.
This helped me immensely to see things differently. I realised my gaps in terms of what I need to have in place before I can achieve my goals in life. This involved learning a lot about me, why I wanted to start a business, why it is so important to be balanced in life, why genuine, trust-filled relationships are so crucial and why improving my listening skills is so valuable.
I learnt as well that it really takes a lot of effort to develop my character, what principles and values are, how to become clearer about the values I live my life by and why this is so helpful and important. Through all of these experiences my energy levels recovered, I became a more balanced person and I started to see many more opportunities in my life. This all helped me to feel much more certain and grounded about life and I feel I am in a much better place to add great value to others as well.
I also learned to appreciate and enjoy this journey knowing that there is no ‘quick fix’ when it comes to personal development.
Most importantly I can see much clearer the impact of my own growth and development on other areas of my life. I feel I can be a better husband to my wife and a better father to my little daughter and that there is a foundation in place in myself from where I can genuinely build up my life and make my dreams come true.
I’m also aware that this is a continuous journey and that I still need to learn a lot. I still screw things up and I know I can still do lots of things differently and better. Though I feel it’s much easier for me to fully accept this, that I will make mistakes and to see it more as an opportunity for further changes and that it’s all part of life. Who said it’s easy to move ahead and to achieve your dreams?
So I’m very grateful to be part of a great community, to know so many wonderful people who are dedicated to their own growth, to helping others and to making their dreams come true as well.
Thank you very much to everyone for the journey so far and looking forward to everything else to come! – Daniel Schmitz
Defining Daniel’s Breakthrough Lessons
– by Chris Nash, Director, Mentor & Coach, Lighthouse International