Have you got that one thing that you know you should be doing, but deep down you don’t know why you’re not? Or that one goal you say you want to achieve but haven’t started working towards? Or those enormous dreams that pull on your heart, but you just can’t pinpoint where to begin? Well trust me you’re not alone. We all have dreams, ambitions, and goals. Things that we can’t imagine ourselves living without, achievements we’ve placed into our own definition of success. many of us have been planning our lives out in our head for all too long now, allowing things like fear and perfectionism to feed into our inactivity. Sounds all too familiar? If so then read on and together let’s learn to say “screw it let’s do it ”.
Fear has a unique way of creeping up on every one of us. It’s not an easy task to admit fear in our lives. It comes in many different forms and it’s important to be aware of the role fear plays to you as an individual. Most commonly this will be the fear of failure. What happens if everything goes wrong? Where will I be left if my dreams don’t work out? What’s the next step if I can’t achieve my goals? But sometimes we forget that failure is one of life’s best teachers. It’s been said that an expert in a field is someone that’s made every possible mistake there is to make. For so many of us its time to let go of the fear of failure and realise that there are truly no Ls only lessons.
On the flip side, the fear of success is very real. The fear of what happens if everything does go to plan. Where will life take me and how will my lifestyle change, or what hard decisions will I be faced with. Sometimes our dreams are so large that we worry if we do achieve them where do we go from there. Be bold, be relentless, and take it one step at a time. We truly have to declare a war on fear and stop it from feeding into our procrastination – the thief of time.
In late August I was lucky enough to be in a room surrounded by practical dreamers at Dream Nation’s annual conference. Before this the notion of perfectionism had never really dawned on me. That thing that we think is a strength but really can be a huge weakness. You know, the hypercritical self evaluation and constant striving for complete satisfaction. The exceedingly high standards we set ourselves that can create a serious challenge to our success. Or those times you put off starting something until you feel you can really do it just how you’ve envisioned. As perfectionists we can find ourselves too fixed on the end goal and what the ‘future’ will look like. At the end of the day that future is irrelevant if you never get there.
So now I ask you; what excuse is holding you back? So easily we can tell ourselves “I’m not talented enough, I don’t have the right skills, I don’t have enough money” so on and so forth. The same way we can shy away from a task by talking ourselves out of it, talk yourself into it. Many of us have yearnings on our hearts and dreams we wish to accomplish but we simply lack confidence in our own ability. Proverbs 18: 20-21 talks about the power in our words. Start telling yourself “I have the confidence, I have the ability, I am unstoppable, I am enough” .Challenge your mindset and begin to be a creator of solutions not problems.
Throughout this piece I’ve constantly referred to ‘we’ and ‘us’ because as much as I pray this helps my readers, these are some home truths that I needed to hear myself. So if there were three things that I could leave you with they would be this:
1) Whether you start or not the time will pass.
Time is truly our greatest asset and let’s face it, we are constantly running out of it. I can’t think of many things worse than that feeling of stagnation. When a significant amount of time has passed and you’ve allowed an idea to remain an idea, or a dispute between loved ones to stay unresolved. Whatever it may be, let’s not leave till tomorrow, something we can act upon today.
2) Trust the process.
Once we’ve made the decision to start, then the journey really begins. We may not always be at the stage where we want to be, but always at the stage that we need to be. Let’s not be blinded by the end result and enjoy what the journey has in store.
3) “If not us, who? If not now, when? ”
Whether it be starting a project, creating a business, learning a new skill/ language or writing a blog. Stepping out of your comfort zone is never easy. Be bold knowing that no goal is beyond our reach. Do something your future self will thank you for.
You’ve heard the quote “it’s not about how you start, its how you finish”. Today let it be “it’s not about how you start, as long as you do”.
Hope this helps!
1. As much as I’d love to claim this title. It’s actually the title of a really good book by Richard Branson and his business experiences.
2. Catching an L means catching a loss.
3. 20 From the fruit of their mouth a person’s stomach is filled; with the harvest of their lips they are satisfied. 21 The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.
4. Joel Osteen – The Power of I am
5. As much as I wanted to reference who said this quote, the internet came up with too many different people. Take it in nonetheless.
6. Special mention goes out to Claud Williams, Dream Nation & The Powerlist Foundation 2016 cohort. It’s been an amazing and inspiring summer that led to this piece and you all played a very big part in that so thank you so much!
7. I’ve always been a big fan of books so here are a couple good reads for follow up: How Will You Measure Your Life? – Clayton Christensen The Tipping Point – Malcolm Gladwell