Daniel “D” Smith: Former Loveworks Afterschool Director
Meet today’s Dreamer and Doer, Daniel “D” Smith. D is an adventure seeker, ice cream connoisseur, and is the former Afterschool Director for Loveworks Leadership, with a passion for equipping the next generation of leaders to be difference makers. When he’s not out adventuring with his wife, Hayley, you can find him at the gym, library or on a mountaintop.
D and his wife Hayley always had a dream of moving internationally, so in September 2019 they made the jump to move to Italy. They had no job connections, but were hopeful to live there for a couple years. In the three months they were there, D and Hayley created strong connections with people. They tackled challenges along the way, from the language barrier to being away from friends and family. After moving back to the US in November, D was offered a job back in Italy but ultimately decided to stay. D explains the way dreams can shift and change as targets move.
Keep Your Goals in Front of You
When trying to accomplish big goals, D recommends taking all the ideas floating around in your head and writing them down in front of you. Then, start mapping it out (decide what steps need to be taken to eventually reach your achievement), count the costs (acknowledge the time, energy, and effort needed to succeed), and maybe even find a mentor who has experience to guide you through the journey. Most of all, D emphasizes the importance of persistence — if you miss one opportunity, take the next. Just make sure to push forward.
As dreamers, it’s easy to wind up with a long list of things we want to accomplish and not know where to start. For D, it’s about taking inventory of the list and deciding which goals align most closely with the things that are truly significant to him. He cites one of his favorite authors, Bob Goff, in the importance of succeeding at things that coincide with your key values and matter to you as an individual.
Care for Yourself
One way D takes care of himself is by setting aside 15-30 minutes to dive into his faith, whether in reading or in prayer. In times of isolation, such as with COVID-19, he also invests in relationships with people who are important to him. Finally, D knows the intricate way our minds and bodies work together; staying active not only betters your physical health, but your emotional health as well.
- Write down what you want to achieve. Doing so will help you to better visualize and affirm your goals.
- Invest in the dreams that lie close to your heart and values.
- Leaders must take care of themselves physically and emotionally. Set aside time to allow your mind and body to heal and grow.