I have had experiences that proved to me that what stayed in my mind were eventually actualized. Here are actual examples from my working experience.
When I joined Toray Industries in my early twenties, I was assigned to a joint venture business section between Toray and an American company called DuPont. My mentor at the time was a Japanese man, who had the same bachelor degree as me, Mechanical Engineer, and he obtained an MBA from a university in the USA, and then joined the American counterpart company. It was my first time to hear about the existence of such a thing as MBA, and my mentor, being fluent in English and knowledgeable in technical concepts, looked so cool to me.
Since then, I admired and envied his skills, and subconsciously thought I wanted to be like him. Four years later, I realized I was in Geneva in a meeting room, fluently communicating in English, understanding all the technical concepts, and being the only Japanese person there. Somehow, those subconscious thoughts became a reality. Later on, Toray started a program that sponsored selected employees to attend top MBA courses. So I applied to the program, was chosen to be sponsored, then applied to universities, and got accepted by an MBA program in the USA, Darden School of Business University of Virginia.
The MBA education at Darden in my early thirties was an eye opener, and it made me realize the value of creating and growing businesses. It was strongly embedded in my mind that I wanted to create and grow businesses as I would proceed into my career.
When I finished my MBA, Toray assigned me to a plant site, stating I should experience working at a plant as a person with an engineering background. I accepted the assignment, but it was dull. The plant had a very low utilization rate of about half, people there did not have much work to do, so they picked weeds in the surrounding fields, and even made me do the same. So I started to think about quitting the job and start my own business. I happened to tell the same to my father.
My father said “Shiro, isn’t it unfair to Toray?” He told me to calculate the amount of investment they had put toward me to obtain an MBA, and told me to work diligently and as hard as I could for three years. He said, “If it turns out to be successful, that’s good. If not, you can then start your own business.”
According to my father’s advice, I made a personal commitment and started to work towards it with my best effort. My commitment was to make the plant utilization rate to 100% in three years. In order to make that happen, I needed to develop some new needs of the material we were producing. I was successful in developing two good usages. Both were in the IT industries; one was in fiber optics and the other was in cellular phones. It actually took me four years, but I was able to accomplish my goal. The developed usages also inspired me to devote myself to the IT industries.
I was lucky to get the opportunity to present the projects I had successfully developed to the top management of Toray. Simultaneously, I prepared a business plan and ask Toray to financially assist me in establishing an IT company and start my own business. The presentation went very well, they took my business plan seriously, and within three months, they decided to help me financially support the establishment of e-Jan Co. in the year 2000. That was when I was 37 years old.
“What stays in your mind will be actualized.” Not only from my experiences described above, but also from other continuing experiences, I would conclude that this is real. It might not go exactly as you had imagined at the beginning, it might take longer than you had expected, or it might come from some different opportunities/situations than you had ever imagined. In my case, I normally realize it suddenly that what had stayed in my mind has already been actualized. Isn’t it interesting?