“How many of you are tricking your own dreams?” asked Gina Rudan, author of Practical Genius at the “Proud to be Latina” conference. Most of the participants raised their hands. I thought it was a great question because it’s true, especially women, we always find an excuse to not do what we’re passionate about: “When the kids are older,” “When I retire,” “When I have a free minute”…And like this, time passes and you still haven’t opened your own business, you still haven’t designed that product you’ve had in mind, you still haven’t created that community service organization that you’ve been promising yourself for years.
That’s why now that we’re nearing the end of the year, and so you don’t let your dreams and professional goals fall by the wayside this coming year, I wanted to share three platforms that you can use to help you see them become a reality.
Posibl is the first social solidarity network, as they describe it, that uses philanthropy concepts, social media, and crowdsroucing so that people can work on their dreams. For example, Rebecca Smith, a handbag designer from Michigan that uses as her seamstresses Muslim immigrants from her neighborhood, posted on the site that she needed four sewing machines to hire three new seamstresses–her goal is to help these women who live isolated from the working world, with no education, and bound to their husbands. Smith is also looking for an accountant, leather distributors, y publicity so she can get her small company known.
The wonderful thing about this system is that you can receive all types of help, including money (on which Posibl doesn’t charge any type of commission) from any part of the world. It’s not only a platform that gets you closer to what you dream, you can also help others with their own goals and aspirations. It’s a great way to redistribute resources and take action on old-school values, like generosity and taking an interest in others. Of course the best way to take advantage of your involvement is to be invested in the promotion of your dream to get others to support you.
If you’ve had an idea for a new product or to improve an existing one, but you don’t know where to go with your plan to make it a reality, Quirky is the perfect for you. For $10 you’ll be able to present your idea so that it’s considered by the cyber-community that gets to decide if it’s worth it for the Quirky team to evaluate it professionally. If they approve your concept, the product will begin a research and development process until it reaches manufacturing and then sales, in which case you’ll get to collect a good percentage of the profits. Just as with Posibl, the goal is for you to be part of a community, so that you won’t just be presenting your idea, but you’ll get to vote on others that you think have merit. You can make money if the products for which you’ve voted are selected. And if you still have some people on your Christmas list, make sure you check out Quirky’s Shop, where they have a slew of incredibly original gifts.
If what you need is cold, hard cash to start up that project you’ve had in mind and have been postponing for years, IndieGoGo is one of your best options. It works like this: You upload all the information on your project, the total amount of money you need to raise, and the options in terms of donation sizes that you’d like to accept ($25, $100, $1,000, etc.). Once you start receiving donations, IndieGoGo does charge a percentage, but unlike other platforms, through this one you can actually keep what you’ve raised even if you haven’t reached your goal. A good idea is to offer those who are contributing to your goal something in return, be that a sample of the product you’re making or a thank-you note. Take note of some of the campaigns in similar areas as the one you’re interested in to get ideas.
As you can see, there are excellent ways that you can act on your dreams today. For once in your life, put yourself first and let your own goals take their course. You’ll have to come back and tell me what it feels like to be living and starring in the life that you envision.
This article was originally published on ¿Qué más?