Look to the Future; Rely on the Past

Reach for the Stars

I look to the stars at night sky with child-like wonderment thinking of what exists beyond as many a wild-eyed dreamer has done before. The unknowns of the multi-verse and the challenges to push our exploration capabilities further are what excites me and others who make up a unique subset of dreamers and explorers.

The engineers and physicists of today use this curiosity to fuel their creative spark.  How do we get out there and explore what the universe has to offer?  What can we do to enhance our technology for further explorers? How to trek “where no man has gone before”?

The future of space exploration lies within the ability to grow based on historical successes. We learn from the failures then build upon what prior pioneering engineers have created and tested.  Creativity and vision still requires planning, testing, and execution. 

Most recently, Bill Nye and The Planetary Society launched LightSail.  The LightSail is literally a sail similar to one found on a sailboat out in the ocean but uses the suns rays to power the satellite.  The achievement is amazing and may quite possibly alter the method of traveling around in space via “LightSail propulsion”, writes Nye.  Nonetheless, they successfully harnessed the ideas of a past dreamer, Carl Sagan, to build the future.  Tireless testing, meticulous planning, and relying on past experiences allowed The Planetary Society to advance the future.

“Ever since there have been people, there have been explorers, looking in places where other hadn’t been before. Not everyone does it, but we are part of a species where some members of the species do—to the benefit of us all.” (Natural History Magazine, April 2003).

Not all of us are scientists thinking of terraforming Mars or helping to pioneer corporate space exploration, but we can learn from their process.  Go explore. Dream big. Build upon the collective creativity of the past.

As leaders and entrepreneurs we must constantly push towards the unknown in hopes that reality mimics vision.  Understanding markets, anticipating risks, maintaining morale, exceeding customer expectations, and constantly evolving your solution are just a few requirements to successfully disrupt your space.  

Spend time putting in the work. Hustle.  Research experiences of prior leaders and startups before you.  Explore markets untreated to yours and identify successful and unsuccessful trends. Seek out the unknowns but establish a plan of action.

Don’t be afraid to research the past, learn from your own failures and success, and don’t stop dreaming!