The people who built billion dollar businesses always had a long-term thinking mindset. When I think about the people I consider role models, such as Elon Musk, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Michelle Obama, Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates and others, they all have one thing in common — it took them decades to get to where they are right now.

Short term winner is not actually a winner, real winner is the one who play long-term games. Long term thinkers plant seeds, keep watering those seeds, stay patient and focusing on the long-term. They can surely catch some shade in 5, 10 and even 20 years from now. But think if do not plant any seeds, can you get some shade?

The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” — Chinese Proverb

Bill Gates said Most people overestimate what they can do in one year and underestimate what they can do in ten years. And I’ve found that’s true 100% of the time.

Most people usually have a list of task for a month, three months or six months. Not more than that, if they plan something for longer than that, they get distracted and forget very easily. Because they can keep them, thinking that are just the dreams and not reality.

Short-Term thinking vs Long-Term thinking

Well, short-term thinking is what can I do in 2017 to grow my business to $1M in sales?. Long term thinking is who can help me build my business to $100M in sales within 10 years?.

Did you notice the subtle difference?

The short-term thinking is all about “I” and the long-term thinking is all about “Who”. The people who always care about themselves, use I work in every conversations they have – they are the short-term thinkers. People who think about others, include them in their conversations, and plan how they can use people for their mutual benefits are the ones who think term and play long-term.

And those are the people who make great fortunes in history of time. Read the history about famous battles, they always planned long-term, plant seeds and water them for a very long time. And that’s how they build great empires. Everything has a lifespan, and then it dies so the empires, traditions, businesses and people.

Be patient and keep thinking long-term, the journey is life – Farooq Ahmed