How To Become An Astronaut: The Inspiring Story Of The First Female Private Space Explorer

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Hold fast to dreams. For if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly.

Langston Hughes

How many dreams die each moment due to fear of obstacles?

It might be billions!

But Anousheh Ansari is among those very few humans who believe in dreams and making them come true.

Do you have any idea of how to become an astronaut? Probably not. And neither did Anousheh.

But that didn’t stop her from becoming one. Anousheh seized her dream of becoming an astronaut and became the first female private space explorer in human history.

In this episode of the Mindvalley podcast, Anousheh explains how she held onto her dream of learning how to become an astronaut. And how you can turn any dream into reality.

Anousheh Ansari: The First Female Private Space Explorer


Born in the Iranian city of Mashhad, Anousheh found her way up to the International Space Station as the first female private citizen to explore space.

And it was all possible as she didn’t give up on her dreams. She believed, kept her mind open, and seized the opportunities that life threw at her.

In the Mindvalley podcast, she explains how you and I too can achieve our dreams, even if they seem impossible at first.

If you’d like to know how to become an astronaut, Anousheh’s story is an inspiring one.

Her story proves that any dream, no matter how huge or impossible it seems, is totally attainable.

The Inception Of A Dream

Right from the childhood, the sky and the stars captured Anousheh’s imagination and she fell in love with the sky.

To her, the sky was the embodiment of all her life’s question and the answers. Everything was up there: all that we had ever been or wanted to become. From then on, a dream ignited in her heart that refused to be smothered.

She kept gazing at the night sky and the stars, pondering all the big questions of life.

Why are we here? What is the purpose of life? Are we alone in the universe?

“Is there another little girl someplace else looking back at me and asking the same questions?” she asks.   

Somehow, Anousheh knew that she was really going to be up there someday. She didn’t know how, but that didn’t stop her.

She never let go of hope and kept dreaming and imagining.  

The Power Of Imagination


One of the crucial aspects of realizing your dreams is to harness the power of imagination, Anousheh explains.

As human beings, I think one of the most precious gifts we have is the gift of imagination. Because we can actually think of places we have never been, think of places that don’t even exist, and imagine ourselves in those places. Imagine ourselves doing things we have never done. And that’s what has made us humans grow and develop and become bigger than the environment we live in. — Anousheh Ansari

Imagination is like the spark of an idea and everything starts from there. And this force of imagination is what helped her realize her dreams of how to become an astronaut.

She watched Star Trek as she grew up, read books about space and kept imagining herself among the stars.

“And before I knew it, I was there,” says Anousheh. 

The Utilization of Visualization Techniques


Once Anousheh learned to harness the power of her imagination, she began to hone her technique with visualization practices.

If you’re looking to learn how to become an astronaut (or any big dream, really!), visualization techniques are a big help.

For example, Anousheh decorated her home and office with all things space related.

She read articles about space and even took online courses to begin to learn how to become an astronaut.

She kept telling anyone that would listen that she would become an astronaut. Nobody believed her. But she didn’t care.    

Although she had no idea how she was going to do it, she knew that as long as she had her dream alive inside her heart, she would find a way. Somehow. Somewhere.  

And then, something incredible started to happen.

Opportunities began to appear, as if by magic. Slowly but surely bringing her step by step closer to her goal. 

She kept meeting the right people, at the right time, in the right places, who offered her the projects she needed to fuel her dream.

learn how to become an astronaut

Learn To See The Opportunities

Life throws us a curve ball and we decide that we have to give up on our dreams. And soon enough, we don’t even remember what they are.

—Anousheh Ansari

According to Anousheh, we often don’t see the multitude of opportunities that come our way. We give up on our dreams because we are too afraid or busy doing what we are supposed to do.

We are leading a regular life, doing regular jobs, bearing the weight of responsibilities on our shoulders while assuming that our dreams are too far-fetched.

And we miss the opportunities that arrive because we don’t know how to recognize them.

But she urges all of us to think for a moment: what would happen if we were no longer afraid? Or if the self-limiting thoughts weren’t there?

Would there have been opportunities that would have helped us get even one step closer to our aspirations?

We have to learn to ignite our imaginations, visualize, and recognize the opportunities that come to call, says Anousheh.

In this way, with the simple and powerful techniques of dreaming big, visualization, and being open to opportunity, Anousheh made her dream of how to become an astronaut come true!

Along the way, she was also able to bring about massive positive changes in the field of space exploration and overall human development through the X-Prize Foundation.

Learn more about her amazing journey and about how you too can fulfill your dreams in this Mindvalley podcast in detail.


What big dream do you have that you want to bring into existence? Please, share with us in a comment below!


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