Never let anyone steal your dreams. Never let anyone tell you that you are not good enough. That you are too old, too dumb, and too busy. Most important of all - stop telling yourself that. Own them. Stop over-thinking and finding all the reasons why you can't and start finding reasons why you can.
In a moment I want you to close your eyes. I want you to silence the world around you and take deep cleansing breaths. I want you to forget for just a moment everything you have waiting. The chores, the life demands, obligations and minutia of your life. I want you to take a trip back to a place in time when you first discovered your dream. Something that triggered such a response in your soul that you knew without any doubt that is what you wanted for your life. A time when you discovered something that intrigue you, fired you up and had you dreaming of the possibilities. Was it the first time in a kitchen when you created something from scratch and knew right then and there you wanted your own restaurant? Was it the moment you taught a lesson to a child and knew that teaching was your calling? Was it back when you were a child and the call you felt to be surrounded by animals, knowing that you were meant to heal and take care of them? Or in the way you always knew just what to do when a friend skinned their knee and you rushed to care for them?
Close your eyes and remember.
Remember for a moment - your dream.
Now, hold that in your mind. Notice what you are feeling. Pride because you are living it? Sadness because you lost it somewhere along the way? Nostalgia of a time forgotten? Anger because circumstances and life just never went your way? Or maybe remembering made you laugh. I mean who hasn't dreamed of flying into space or joining the circus at some point?
But maybe, just maybe, you are feeling motivated. Motivated to pick up your dream, dust it off and give it a go.
Ever since I was a little girl I dreamed of being a writer. I would write short stories, poems, articles and notes, every chance I got. I believed in my dream. I felt it in my very soul that writing was exactly what I was supposed to be doing. I didn't understand the importance of my dream. I didn't understand what it meant for me. I didn't understand that life and people would try to smash my dream, would belittle it, and would ignore it. When I was young I believed in my dream and I believed in myself. It just seemed natural.
But as the years flew by and I grew up - both life and reality took its toll. I started to believe in the naysayers. I started to question my abilities. Life took over and I found myself further and further away from my dreams. I became a caregiver in my family, the peace keeper and found that year by year that creative spark that had flowed so naturally, diminished. Reality had put a damper on it. Reality at times had completely blown it out and I was left playing the hand that I had been dealt. I thought at the time that I had no choice. No say in the matter. I had life to deal with. My dreams would have to wait.
Thing is sometimes dreams do have to wait. Sometimes we have to walk our paths and do what we must. Sometimes we have to place our dreams on a shelf and raise our children, work, care for aging parents and make our way in life. But, we must never let their flame go out. We must visit them every chance we can and remember. And one day, we must make the decision to own them. To bring them down and dust them off and make them happen. Or at least try.
Maybe they have evolved since the time when we first had them. Maybe they have grown and matured right alongside us, only we never knew. Maybe just maybe, with a little soul searching and tweaking we can make them into reality. But first we must get back in touch with them. We must remember our dreams. We must allow ourselves the freedom to dream them, to feel them and to imagine the possibilities. We must silence the fear. We must silence the naysayers and stop finding all the reasons why they couldn't possible come true. You are not too old. You are not unworthy. So what if your life is a mess? So what that you are scared?
You are never too old. You are never unworthy. Life is always messy and being scared is natural. Use your fear to motivate you. Put yourself out there in a way that you never imagined possible and go for it. Release your dreams. Release the feeling of regret and focus instead on the feeling of what if?
Back in 2011, I was just shy of 33 years old. I was beaten down, exhausted and just floating through the days. Life had been hellish, draining and all I wanted to do was hide. I needed to get all the negative out of myself. I sat at my kitchen table one day, drinking coffee and lost. So much bad had happened. I was realizing how much of my life had been spent living for another. How much of my life had been about everyone but me. I was at a crossroads and had no idea which way to turn. My dreams all but forgotten. I reached for a pen without even thinking and started writing. Words flowed from my pen as if it was possessed and I began to remember. I didn't stop to analyze, I didn't over-think it, and I simply let it flow
That day I built a website and added a blog, which in turn inspired a Facebook page. I wrote from a place inside of myself that I had all but forgotten existed. It was like running into an old friend that you haven't seen in a long time. Only this time I was running into myself. I wrote and published pieces with no end game in sight. No idea what would come of it. But the need to create again, the need to have words flowing was so strong; I knew that I could not deny it.
The naysayers came in full force. Trying to tell me what I could and could not write about. Trying to stop my dreams from going forward. For the first time in my life I fought back and said no. Not this time. This time I fight for my dreams. This time I will see where it goes and I will not let anything or anyone - stop me.
On Friday I published my first book. Never in my life have I felt so validated. Never before have I felt the pride that holding that book in my hands brings. I had forgotten what hope felt like and holding that book, my book, reminded me.
Never let anyone steal your dreams. Never let anyone tell you that you are not good enough. That you are too old, too dumb, and too busy. Most important of all - stop telling yourself that. Own them. Stop over-thinking and finding all the reasons why you can't and start finding reasons why you can. Your dreams are not silly. Your dreams are not unattainable. Your dreams may have been forgotten but you can remember them. You can reignite them.
Your dreams are simply waiting. Own them.
Find my debut book on Amazon
5/7/2013 12:24:26 pm
Inspiring and encouraging! Thank you!
5/7/2013 12:35:21 pm
Thank you Alice!! Dare to follow your dreams ☼
Dawn (Diary of a not so wimpy mom)
5/7/2013 12:30:28 pm
Congrats on your new book! That is awesome! <3
5/7/2013 12:36:00 pm
Thank you Dawn!!! I keep pinching myself to make sure I am not still dreaming :)
5/7/2013 12:32:14 pm
You are an Inspiration! Absolutely! Thank you for your writings:)
5/7/2013 12:37:19 pm
"When action is applied, life becomes incredible" - no truer words have ever been written. This is a life lesson I am learning, one that I have to say I am loving!!
5/7/2013 02:12:55 pm
such a heart felt writing, and exactly where I am in my life. Thanks for the courage to write!
5/8/2013 01:50:43 am
Cassedy!! You can do anything you set your mind to. Get on it!! LOL
5/7/2013 08:50:38 pm
In the words of George Elliott " It's never to late to be what yoy might have been ".
5/8/2013 01:52:38 am
There is so much truth to that. Though I don't know if I will ever be a trapeze swinger.. that ship may have sailed on.. lol
5/8/2013 03:47:50 am
Beautiful story Jenn. I am at a similar stage as when you sat at the table with your coffee in 2011. I just started a blog to help people too but I am afraid no one will read it. Any tips? Thank you for your inspiring words.
5/18/2013 07:03:29 am
The one and probably most important tip I can give you Karen is this: write in your own voice. Write first for yourself. If and when your words touch another - even better. But write for you and you will be surprised how many lives you will touch in the process.
5/18/2013 07:04:53 am
My pleasure Colleen.. Thank you for reading
Linda the Norwegian
6/6/2013 09:06:31 am
This just hit me. We're the same age, I dream about writing, I'm about to step into a marvelous change in my life just now... Looking at a new flat in a new town tomorrow, different job already started. Changes come stumbling head over heels into my lap these days! Soon as I've moved, I'll start writing. Thank you for this page, it's so encouraging!! Feels so right... And good luck in fulfilling more dreams <3
6/6/2013 01:29:20 pm
All of your life changes sound so exciting!!! May all your dreams be fulfilled and you be as happy and successful as you can possibly stand!! And write lady.. write, write and then, write some more!!
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