As we started looking over what we accomplished in 2012 and setting goals for 2013 I have become more and more aware of this desire in me that says “Why wait? Why be safe? I want to live now! I don’t want to wait 10-30-40 years to live the life of my dreams I want to live it this year.”
What does that look like for you? What are your dreams? What is it that you want to do so bad you can taste it? What is that thing that you can’t not do?
Paulo Coulho in the alchimist, says,”People are capable at any time in their lives, of doing what they dream of.”
How can that be true? What about college? What about a stable household to raise my kids? What about money? What about my job? What about my skill level?
At any time we choose in our lives we have two options make an excuse or find a solution and start moving. Making excuses is way easier. And feels right. So this is what most people do and then justify it with more excuses. But that feeling is what got you where you are and if where you are isn’t where you want to be then I would not put too much trust in that ‘feeling’.
Look at successful people throughout all of history and you will find people who overcame incredible obstacles with nothing more than persistent and consistent action.
I assume that we all know what making excuses looks like so I am going to focus on the solutions and action steps to keep this February from being the dream killer.
What does finding a solution look like?
1. Define your dream.
What is your dream that you don’t want to put off?
What do you want?
(Why do you want it?) most people who know what they want and still are not taking action to achieve it are missing just this one answer Why?
When you define why you want something you can then place value on it and make it a priority.
Ex. I have on my goal list for 2013 to take my two kids to Disney world for a week.
Now my Why for that goal is: I want my kids belief in what’s possible to be stretched. I want their dreams to grow. And part of my why is that when my daughter dresses up like a princess and I dance around the house with her In my arms there is this excitement and life that I see in her eyes and I let my imagination take that moment of us dancing to the magic kingdom and I can see those eyes shine like never before. The same with my son when we watch Cars for the 7 millionth time and he is jumping up and down on the couch pulling my arm saying dad dad dad dad Lightning McQueen. Voooom vooom. I can see that same sparkle of life in his eyes and then same thing I close my eyes and see those two looking up to me at Disney world with this pure Joy and Awe and I can’t imagine not experiencing that moment. A friend of mine says your not at the why until there are tears. That brings me to tears every single time I picture it. So now when my goal is competing with other things in my life I can choose
Entertainment Or That moment that I will experience in Disney world?
And entertainment was just the first thing that came to mind so it is what I went with but it could be anything.
-If you don’t know what you want I can assure you, you want get it.
People who cry the loudest about not having what they want in life generally when asked what they do want can not give you an answer. They have no clue what they really want.
Write down your dream. Put it where you will see daily and be reminded of it.
2. Find a mentor.
Who do you know that is where you want to be or doing what you want to do? Maybe they are in a different industry but the concept is the same.
– Find people who are where you want to be, have what you want to have or are doing what you want to do and follow them.
You can go at this alone and find and make all the mistakes or you can learn from the experience of those who came before you.
Who is wiser, the man who learns from his own mistakes or the man who also learns from the mistakes of others.
If your a good creative writer and you love writing but you don’t know how to make money at it. My advice would be before you go to school and spend tons if time and money, go find another writer who is getting Paid and who could give you some advice and possibly mentor you.
If you want to be a better parent or spouse find someone who is where you want to be and do what they do.
3. Set goals and Make a plan of action.
While looking at my goals for 2012 I noticed the goals that I put a date on and the ones I didn’t had a lot to do with what I accomplished. But the secret isn’t to just write it down and put a date beside it. Anyone can do that.
Make a plan of action. When we were kids we called it ‘A treasure map’.
How can you get from where you are now to where you want to be?
What do you need that you don’t have? What do you have that needs to improve?
How do you get those things?
Paulo Coulho said “Action is the only teacher.” We can study and know something without experiencing anything different. But when we act we change we grow we learn and as a result we get better so our results get better also.
So set small goals that lead to larger goals that lead to fulfilling your ultimate goal. Then go to work today on accomplishing the first goal. Don’t wait until tomorrow. God allows us to remember the past and plan for the future but we on live in today. That is powerful. You can only change today. So don’t waste the only time that you have to actually act on what you desire. Without action there is no change and if nothing changes nothing changes.
To end I want to share a quick story.
A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to sit down with a young woman about setting goals and while discussing these steps above she said something that I believe a lot of us struggle with and that if it is not resolved will keep us from fulfilling our dreams and it was this. “I don’t want to write down another goal! I can’t stand to write down something that I desperately want to see happen and put a date on it only to in 6mo be reminded that I failed again.”
1st Don’t run from your past. I know it can hurt. But as Rafegee the bamboo in the lion king says, “you can either run from it or learn from it.”
What actions did you do that lead to failure? Don’t do those instead make that your ultimate goal and find out what small steps you can take that lead you in that direction and find a mentor that can help get you there.
2nd. If you don’t believe that you will achieve your goals then you never will. Success is reserved for those who believe they can have it. Ron Reynolds said once “God never puts in us a desire or a dream that we do not have the ability to achieve.”
So run your race with perseverance forgetting what is behind and straining on toward what is ahead, your prize for which God has called you and created you to lay hold of.
What has helped you the most in achieving your goals?
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Sorry for the run on sentences and grammatical errors. My proof reader/wife is out for the day and I didn’t want to wait to get this to you all.
Thanks for reading.