We’ve all been thru heartaches, depressions, unfulfilled aspirations & endlessly chasing dreams. The list can go on & on. Often I hear statements such as “That’s not what I wanted to do for a living”, “I regret not doing such & such”, “I wish I fulfilled my dream of (fill in the blank)”. My grandmother used to say that “worst things on the end of life are regrets”. I’m sure if you ask an elder or someone on their dead bed, they will share what they regret not doing. It only requires a little bit of effort, commitment & inspiration. Goals without diligence are useless.
Accomplishments don’t necessarily have to entail to promotion, productivity or profits. Sometimes the most fulfilling things we do in our lives bring very little recognition. Write down what your goals are or what you’d like to change or accomplish in your life. Specify time frame- if it’s now, within the year or long term. It is the list otherwise known as the “bucket list”. The same list that we carry with us most of our lives, reminding us of how much more we have to accomplish. It is important to write all of it down & place it somewhere where you can always see it. Don’t write things that scare you, but I do recommend confronting fear at least one time. Facing fear is essential for personal growth. Figure out what it is & come up with the way to confront it in a way that encourages you. Don’t be afraid of failure. The only thing worse than failure is not trying at all.
When the list is done put it somewhere. On the fridge, pin it to the wall, tape it to the TV…I don’t care where it is as long as you can always see it. It’s been proven that putting thoughts or ideas in writing contributes to its completion.
If you can’t come up with an inspiration, try desperation. Desperately try to find something major you’d like to change or something small to accomplish. Keep in mind, it’s not the size of an accomplishment but the accomplishment itself. The point is to get out & do something. As Nike would say, “Just Do It”! Shift to a determined, creative mindset. It’s been said that journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. So whether it’s a 1 mile run or preparing five course dinner- small wins & successes are better than no wins at all. Gain momentum by starting small. The smaller the goals- better the chance of its achievement. Try to find an inspiration in your rear view mirror. What life experiences or events from your past can help you move one step forward? What have you accomplished so far that can give you a jumpstart? Give it some thought. I’m sure you can come up with a list of examples. What if your life depended on it and in order to live you had to make one dream come true? I bet that it would get you going. All of the sudden you would find motivation or money to do it. You would immediately carve out time for whatever you need to complete. Absolutely. Frame your mind, have realistic dreams & I predict lots of successes. Despite of what Rolling Stones tell you, time is not on your side. The clock is ticking so no better time like the present.
“If you don’t like the road you’re walking, start paving another one” – Dolly Parton
“The only difference between you & someone you envy is, you settled for less”. Dr. Phil
I came across this quote twice in my life. The first time I heard it I was convinced that Dr Phil was watching me from a hidden camera. It felt like he was observing me, whispered the quote into my ear, and left me to figure out the rest. I have to admit that it made a small impact but I didn’t think much of it. Every now & then I would remind myself of it but again didn’t make a big deal about it. Years went by and I continued to live uneventful & tedious life. I noticed however that my life started to irritate me, make me sad & I began to suffocate. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong but each day I felt less & less happy. I did however put a good face to a bad game. I adore & respect Megyn Kelly and I was very excited when her book “Settle for more” came out. I was reading it & all of the sudden there it was. Same quote starring at me, right into my face: “the only difference between you & someone you envy is, you settled for less”. I have those words pinned to the wall in my office. I look at it daily. Megyn went on explaining how it was an eye opener for her & I recall the time froze on me. I felt paralyzed. I kept reading it over & over sitting straight up in my bed as I discovered world’s greatest secret. This time I knew it was meant for me to see it. I knew right there that I did settle for less. It felt like an intervention. I couldn’t sleep that night. Time to re-examine my life I thought. I was afraid that if I didn’t act on it now, I would miss out in life. This wasn’t a coincidence.
I reached deep into my heart & soul and started visualizing my dreams. I categorized it as short & long term but I stayed realistic. Some changes required immediate action & some remained on the list for a while. Warning, dreams also come with setbacks. I have accepted mine as part of the process instead of giving up on everything all together. Setbacks build patience and perseverance. I adjusted my attitude and started working on myself & the emotions that caused my unhappiness. I pretty much created an improvement plan. It is crucial to stick to it & give yourself a deadline. Continue to visualize your dreams and don’t betray your authenticity. Few months went by and I started noticing how my attitude changed. I made small steps towards small goals at the beginning. All of the sudden I became curious of how much more I can stretch my ambitions. Turned out that opportunities were endless. My future was 100% in my hands. I stayed consistent with the plan because only consistency leads to personal transformation. I did experience hurts & fails during my journey. Big ones. The truth is, the more hurts & disappointments you experience- the more challenges & fears you can face. Important is to honor commitments to yourself. Don’t make excuses because excuses are dream killers. Be specific & commit to it. If you truly want to send an earthquake through your soul, when you know it’s time to make a change- you will somehow figure out the way to make it happen. Don’t let the dreams scare you. Devote your time, your energy & money if necessary. Be true & honest with yourself. Otherwise it will not work. And remember, settling for less is not an option! L.
“…I have been asking myself some tough questions. Ones I’m not sure I want the answers to. I fear screwing up my life. Why can’t I be satisfied with what I have? Because, in my heart, my soul, I want more. I hope I have the courage to listen to myself. I hope I figure out what settling for more means in my personal life and have the strength to do whatever it takes to have a full, meaningful life….” “Settle for more” – Megyn Kelly