Never give up on your dreams
SOMETIMES at the start of a new year or a new beginning we are afraid to wish or pray for good things to happen to us or to show gratitude for the good things in our lives or to go after good things for ourselves, our families and our friends. A lot of us spend our time stuck in regret, wishing our lives had turned out differently, and beating ourselves up for the decisions that have led us to this place.
We feel cheated out of a life that could have been something better. We feel angry and sad and disappointed. And most of all, we feel stuck. In these moments, it’s easy to focus on all of the things that have gone wrong. It’s easy to focus on the loss and the heartbreak and the pain, but it’s also important to remember all of the things that have gone right.
The start of a new year can be a time when we can and should focus on the positives and good things in our lives. It’s important to remember all of the positive experiences and friendships and growth and laughter we have gained, things you would have never taken part in, lessons you would have never learned, and people you would have never met had you not veered off the desired path. The start of a new year is a time to look at one’s life and to look at how one can make it better, more good, more healthier, more loving, more caring, more thoughtful, more hardworking, more thankful, more compassionate, more spiritual, more positive, more inclusive and more fulfilling.
The truth is that every time you thought you were missing out on something important, you were given the opportunity to experience something valuable in its own right. Every time life’s obstacles rejected you from something good, you were being redirected to something, or someone, equally wonderful. You may not have ended up where you intended to go, but trust, for once, that you have ended up where you need to be. Trust that you are in the right place at the right time. Trust that every experience has something to offer you. Trust that something that feels like a curse in the moment can blossom into a blessing. Trust that your life is enough.
Trust that you are enough. Why are most of us afraid to follow our dreams? Why do the majority of us find it difficult to achieve what we want, while the minority can somehow set out without so much as a care in the world?
What makes some people successful, while others remain simply dreamers? Is it the difference in their internal make-up? Is it in the way they were raised?
The environment they grew up in? When one studies the lives of ‘successful people’, one thing becomes evident. These people do not follow a particular pattern; they come from all walks of life, social classes, with varying degrees of socioeconomic backgrounds. Some are from affluent families, while others emerge from economically depressed areas.
They come from all corners of the earth. Some of these people are college educated; others learn from the lessons life has taught them. Many learn from a combination of both. However, all of them understand there is no end to learning and that skills have to be constantly upgraded.
While each successful person probably thought of giving up at some stage, they opted instead to persevere and used it to their advantage. Somehow, they found a way to move past it, trudge ahead and achieve their goal. And still they plough on, setting new goals and never accepting the status quo.
Though they may come from vastly differing backgrounds, each has found within themselves the ability to turn dreams into reality. You are just like them. You too can be an achiever. You too can plough on in your own unique and special way. Just like these people, you will face adversity. You may have more than your share of shortcomings. You may have lost your job, your way of life or your faith. You may experience an inordinate amount of failure or suffering.
You can still achieve. You have more greatness in you than you know or imagine. It is just a matter of choosing to persevere. Did you know that Beethoven’s music teacher told him he was hopeless as a composer. Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper because he had “no good ideas”. Thomas Edison’s teacher told him he was too stupid to learn anything.
Albert Einstein was four years old before he spoke and stuttered until he was nine. He was advised to drop out of high school and his teachers told him he would never amount to much. Henry Ford’s first two automobile businesses failed. Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team. William H Macy’s store failed seven times before it caught on. Babe Ruth struck out 1,330 times, but he also hit 714 home runs. Stephen Spielberg dropped out of high school as a sophomore. He was persuaded to come back and was placed in a learning disabled class.
He lasted a month.
Ray Kroc failed as a real estate salesperson before he set up McDonalds. Our own Pat McDonagh was turned down when trying to open a snooker hall and started his famous Supermac’s instead. So please don’t give up on yourself and your dreams, plough on instead.
Thought for the week
As your thought for this week, dare to dream, but, even more importantly, dare to put action behind your dreams and be the best you can be and know and trust that you are enough. Be grateful for all the good things in your life.