You don’t really fit the stereotype of the global entrepreneur nor tech guy on cover stories… but you know your unique vision for the future is worth betting your life on.
Some people even tell you that you’re an unconventional visionary.
And in case you’re wondering if you really are one, check out how many of these signs you can relate to.
1) You stand out without trying
Conformity has no place in you.
It’s not that you didn’t try to fit in. You just realized that it was simply impossible because even when you dress and look like everyone else, your ideas wouldn’t fit into any mold.
Even when you were trying to blend in, you ended up saying things from a totally different perspective. You often cross lines and boundaries-finding solutions in places other people won’t even think to look at.
At times this can make you seem crazy or attention-seeking, but when everyone is all out of solutions and they finally try out your ideas, they finally realize that you were right all along.
And as you get older and wiser, you and your vision for the future now effortlessly stands out wherever you go.
2) You are a natural collaborator
You know that “My way or the highway” isn’t vision.
While there’s the stereotype of the individual leader, unconventional visionaries know that the way forward can’t be gained by working alone but together—through interdependence rather than independence.
This is why collaboration is so much more natural to you than other people who want the top positions.
You know that the problems of the present and the future require different skill sets and perspectives. This is why you believe that building upon each others’ strengths opens up a world of solutions not available to those who see through a narrow lens.
As brilliant as your ideas are, you aren’t constrained nor attached to only one specific way of doing things.
Your vision is clear and you are more than open to collaborators opening and carving out paths for the way forward.
3) You aren’t afraid to fail and begin again
While most people avoid failure like the plague, unconventional visionaries SEEK it because they know that even failure can mean getting closer to the real answers.
So even when you know it could mean going back to the very start, you believe that you won’t be going back to zero because you’ve learned something from your “failures”.
And unlike most people who get stuck in the “sunk cost fallacy” by sticking with an endeavor because they regret wasting the resources they already invested on it (and thus wasting even more), you are swift and wise to cut your losses.
Because you don’t have a negative view of failure, starting on a clean slate (with the wisdom of experience and perspective) is exhilarating rather than paralyzing.
4) You’re a curious creative
While some people are locked in the belief that creativity is the sole territory of artists, you know that imagination and innovation applies to any field.
Whether in business or family life, you’ve somehow retained the child-like way of looking at situations and problems as a beginner would. And because of this, your view is always fresh and off the beaten path.
While other people strictly limit their interests, your mind stays open especially to fields and opinions outside of your comfort zone.
Your curiosity gives you the capacity to understand and see where other people are coming from, even when you can’t always agree.
Seeing the world from a wide range of perspectives serves as an unlimited source of ideas you use to create your vision and the steps towards it.
5) You maintain a playful spirit
“All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”.
You know that severe seriousness makes even the smartest lose their edge.
Even in the midst of challenges, you keep yourself from going rigid by loosening up with laughter and a bit of fun. In the midst of stress, this helps not only you, but everyone around you to stay relaxed and positive.
While other people’s ideas tend to get stuck deeper and deeper into problems with no solution near, you stay out of the box and out of the pressure cooker of tension and anxiety.
You know that to balance commitment to your vision with a playful spirit is the way to sustain your passion and rally those around you.
Afterall, isn’t dancing around obstacles a far more efficient way compared to forcing your way through?
6) You trust and follow your intuition
Even when you don’t have steps 1 to 100 in place, you’re not paralyzed by it.
You have built enough faith in yourself to follow your intuition even when you can’t fully make sense of it yet.
While others have the limiting belief that intuition isn’t logical or scientific, you’ve always known to trust your hunches way before several researchers started publishing that “intuition is the highest form of intelligence.”
This comes from the wisdom of hard work, not laziness.
After doing deep dive research of your own, you know there’s a point where the books end, and you have to follow your gut.
So you forge ahead anyway, because as bold as you are, you also have the capacity to double-check and self-correct your process as you go.
7) You’re a passionate strategist
“You can’t see the forest for the trees” is a metaphor you keep to heart because you know that there’s a reason why vision and mission always go hand in hand.
Without it, even the most talented person can get lost in the little details of what they want to achieve (the trees) and lose sight of the big picture (the forest).
You know that even as you focus on your vision for the future, it’s important to balance it with what can be done here and now.
Your passion means you map out the journey and strategize all the paths, obstacles and goal points to follow.
Like an expedition leader, you plan, prepare, brainstorm, collaborate and simulate all the paths towards achieving the vision, way before you even take the first step.
And once you start, you are always ten steps ahead, looking out for pitfalls and finding the most efficient ways to get closer to the vision.
8) You are gifted at harnessing peoples’ gifts and talents
As a solution-seeker, you have become an expert at seeing peoples unique gifts and harnessing them.
Competitiveness isn’t in your language because you sincerely believe that everyone has a unique contribution towards achieving the vision.
You do your best to remove power play around those around you and stay grounded in the work that has to be done.
And because you treat everyone as worthy equals, people around you inevitably step up their game and rise up in astounding ways that support the vision you all want to achieve together.
9) Your energy is inspiring
Whether it’s through a speech, a talk or in private conversation, people have told you that they were inspired by you to contribute their part.
Whether it’s solutions to climate change, or how to have better relationships with others, your energy sustains through the toughest spots.
And it’s not just because you chose the best inspirational words, but rather, it’s because people sense your sincerity.
They feel that you’re an authentic person that can be trusted.
Your genuine faith in your capacity shines through and it powers your aura to such an intensity that to be in proximity to it, one cannot help but be moved to action.
10) You have exceptional integrity
Let’s face it, there have been people dubbed as ‘visionaries’ who have a terribly questionable moral compass.
As an unconventional visionary, you value people and relationships as much as the goal. This means that while other people may take the shorter route by stepping on others, you take the higher road.
You hold it in your core that the vision isn’t worth anything if it means sacrificing your values and humanity just for the sake of achieving something great.
This is world’s away from people-pleasing and sucking up to others to get what you want and achieve what you need.
Integrity is ultimately about keeping respect in one’s self and others.
If you’ve been tempted to compromise your values and have withstood the test, then that’s the true mark of an unconventional visionary.
If you resonated with many or all of the above and you find yourself asking. “If I’m really all these, why do I still have self-doubt?”
Ease up on yourself because no one is exempted. What matters is you know that you never give up.
Besides, this is why we don’t exist alone. In moments when life is especially tough and you wonder if you’ll ever achieve your vision, take a deep breath.
Surround yourself with the people who will remind you of your power to inspire and transform lives.
And before long, you’ll reignite the unconventional visionary in you with even bolder ideas to transcend all limitations.