Are there things you would love to do but when you
start thinking about how you could move toward them,
you get stuck? If so then you are not alone. It’s so easy
to get bogged down with the many reasons why it just
isn’t a realistic aspiration or goal; why ‘now’ is not the
best time and why it’s much easier to just do nothing.
I doubt there is a person on this planet who hasn’t
dreamt about doing something which seemed, at the
time, so much bigger than them and for which they
could rattle off many reason’s “why not”. The difference
between those who go on to make their dreams a reality
is not that they are just very lucky, that they are born
with a silver spoon in their mouth or with an immunity
to fear. Nope. The difference is that the doer’s
move forward despite their fears and objections.
Unfortunately you can’t make fear go away by
wishing it away. The only way to get rid of the
fear of doing something is to go out and do it.
What holds us back in life most often is our own
limiting beliefs. Our imagination has a field day,
fueled by self-doubt, of all the dreadful things that might
happen if we fail to achieve our goals and how
humiliating it would be but how often have you seen
someone ridiculed and shamed for doing their best?
More likely you admire their tenacity and courage for
giving it a go.
Of course we can always choose to stay inside our
comfort zone because in there, we don’t have limiting
beliefs about failing or looking stupid or
risking our social status. Comfort zones are… surprise,
“What’s so wrong with comfortable?” I hear you mutter.
Well as comfortable as you might like to be, we humans
are born to grow, develop and learn. As kids we were
constantly trying things we hadn’t tried before and in the
process we learned more about ourselves, our abilities
and the world. We developed new skills we didn’t think
we could (when my son was five years old he was
adamant he would “never ever ever“ master the art of
tying his shoe laces!) and as we did, we grew more
capable and confident.
I’ve met very few people who relish failure and yet it is
from making mistakes and failing that we learn. Think
back to a time when you failed and ask yourself what
you gained from the experience and if you think you
didn’t gain anything, think again! We learn far more
from our failures than from our successes. The lessons
our failures teach us equip us to deal with the challenges
of the future; they strengthen our muscles for life. The
hurdles you come to in your life are for jumping and your
doubts about your own limitations are your biggest
hurdle of all!
“Nothing will ever be attempted if all possible
objections must first be removed” Samuel Johnson
My point is that when we don’t continually seek to grow
in new ways and develop ourselves we are, in essence,
selling ourselves short. We stagnate – those ‘life muscles’
wither - and so depriving ourselves and the world of our
So, what is it that might inspire you to embrace a sense
of adventure in your life? Are you up for even just taking
another look at those aspirations you have floating
around in your head or perhaps those really big dreams
hidden deep under your bed?
Of course just dreaming big doesn’t change anything. For
things to change action is required and that’s where we
so often get stuck. Those who are most successful at
living their dreams master the art of shifting their
sights from the big canvas to the immediate
actions they need to take to get there. They don’t
wait for opportunity to knock, the go and find it. They
don’t just dream - they ‘do!’
So now you may be thinking, “Okay, so I have this idea
about something I’ve always wanted to do (or be) but it
does seem like a bloody big leap from where I am now.
Where do I begin? How do I begin?”
Following is a summary of the steps you should take
when working on clarifying and then moving
forward to accomplish your goals and dreams.
1. Write It Down & Share It!
“Everything that is was once imagined” Ted Joans
Firstly I suggest that you get out a piece of paper and just
write down what it is that has captured your imagination.
As Stephen Covey, author of the best-selling “7 Habits of
Highly Effective People” said, “Begin with the end in mind”.
Not everyone dreams of flying to the moon or ending
apartheid. What inspires and excites you? Perhaps you
dream of changing career, running a little B&B in the
country somewhere, running a marathon or maybe just
learning the guitar. Whatever it is, I’ll bet it’s something
you would be good at if you focused your energy on it.
So write it down in as much detail as you can. Imagine
what it would feel like to accomplish this goal or live
this dream – what would that be like for you? And then,
scary as it can be, share it with someone. The very act
of sharing it gives it more substance, deepens your
commitment to it and helps to bring it more into
reality in your mind’s eye.
2. Identify The First Few Steps
Next start writing an action plan for what steps need to
be taken to start you moving in the direction of its
creation. What needs to be done first? What can you
read? Who can you email, speak or write to? Perhaps
you need to do some ‘homework’ to find out what those
steps will be. Don’t wait for the time to be free - set the
time aside and do it.
3. Take A Step Forward – However Small!
As Martin Luther King Jr. suggested, “Take the first step
in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just
take the first step”. The very process of taking some
action, however small, creates a forward momentum.
Great things don’t happen from wishful thinking but
from action – so get moving!
4. Get A Support System Around You
As you step closer the mountain it can look even more
overwhelming than it did before, but don’t let all those
reasons “why not” stop you. I highly recommend that
you get a support structure around you that will help you
move forward when you get stuck.
And as you can see you have to look no more. We here at
Every Month a Million with our Daily Dose of Good
are your support structure.
Ask friends for their support (particularly during those
times you have setbacks – which you will – and those
voices of doom and gloom in your head get on the
loudspeaker!), read books that inspire you, find a
mentor that’s already walked the path ahead of you, join
an association of like minded people who are doing
similar stuff, get a coach, (me) and very important, tune
out to those people in your life who do not encourage
and support you (they’d rather you remain stuck to
justify where they are!).
That is exactly what we are here at Every Month a Million
Ultimately you really can’t go wrong by “giving it a go”.
Those who you regard as the greatest of people have but
remember that nothing great would have ever been
achieved if it had first required a guarantee of
YOUR WORLD IS AS BIG (OR AS SMALL) AS
YOU MAKE IT!
Imagine your life fifty or so years from now and how you
might feel looking back on how you lived those years –
who you were as a person and what you did (or didn’t
do!). What would bring you the greatest sense of
fulfillment and joy? So invest in yourself some time to
think about what it is that you would love to do, small or
big, how you would feel to have at least given it a go!
Be not afraid of going slowly, be afraid of standing still.