10 Thoughts you’ll Encounter While Pursuing your Dream

10 Thoughts you’ll Encounter While Pursuing your Dream

As you go about making your dream a reality, there will always be certain thoughts that cross your mind, bringing in doubt, fear, and discouragement. But they’re just thoughts, and we can’t trust our thoughts. Your head likes to mess with you, especially when it comes to the thing you love. These thoughts will likely stumble into your brain at some point, but there’s no need to dwell on them.

  1. “I’m too young.”

1 Timothy 4:12 says, “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” So what if you’re still a minor? You should be working on your dream right now. There are dozens of success stories of people 18 or younger achieving amazing things. Age is irrelevant when it comes to achieving dreams.

2. “I’m too old.”

My favorite author C.S. Lewis said, “You’re never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” Did you know he was in his 50s when he wrote the first Narnia novel? And he actually first had conceptual ideas for it back at the age of 16, but he did not begin writing it until much later. Considered his greatest literary achievement, amongst others, that’s an inspiring story. Once again, age is irrelevant to dreams.

3. “I’m running out of time.”

How, exactly? Because you’re growing up? Because you’ve created imaginary deadlines? Because your achievement date doesn’t match that of your peers? No, you’re not running out of time. And you better be pacing yourself.

4. “I took too long.”

I recently came across a post that I then shared on social media because it spoke so personally to me: “Just because you took longer than others, doesn’t mean you failed. Remember that.” Remember that, indeed.

5. “I should have done it like the others.”

No, you are not them. They are not you. Your path is different. Something I always say: “There are many different paths to the same goal.” Just because you’re doing things differently from everyone else doesn’t mean you won’t achieve the same thing. Stop comparing yourself.

6. “I missed my chance.”

Doors open and doors close. They also open again. If you missed something, then something else will come along. It may change up your path a little, but like I said, there are many different paths to the same goal.

7. “I chose wrong.”

If it’s what you love to do, then you did not choose wrong. If you’re basing this off of the monetary success, well, DON’T! If your goal is to make money, well then, I hope you chose a path that made sense for that.

8. “I’m not skilled at this.”

If you’re passionate about it, then you will get good at it. Truly, ability should come naturally with passion, so perhaps you’re just underestimating your skills.

9. “I know nothing.”

Well of course, you’re still learning! That’s what studying is for! This is such a silly notion. If you’re passionate about it, the studying part will just be part of the fun.

10. “What the heck am I doing?”

Oh, we all think this, of everything. At least you’re doing something. So what if you have no idea? You’ll learn by trial and error. There’s no greater teacher. Let this thought slip away and laugh it off.

“Run mad as often as you choose, but do not faint.” What did she mean?

“Run mad as often as you choose, but do not faint.” What did she mean?

If you’re a Jane Austen fan, you might recognize this quote from her novel Love and Friendship (it’s not from Mansfield Park, despite the BBC movie using it):

“Run mad as often as you choose, but do not faint.”

Funny enough, within the context of the novel it originates from, it’s pretty much literal. The character Sophia, who speaks the words, is basically telling her friend Laura to not faint so as to avoid a fatal outcome like her own (developing consumption). But the quote can very much be interpreted beyond the literal, and perhaps is even intended by Austen to be so.

When I read this quote, my mind goes to the scripture Galatians 6:9-“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” The concept of endurance is often repeated in the Bible; it is encouraged. “Keep going,” it says. That is what I interpret from this quote.

“Run mad as often as you choose…” by this I get that we should have adventures, be a little crazy, and not stop.

“…but do not faint.” don’t give up, no matter how tough things get. Don’t fall into discouragement and despair.

In other words, keep going.

You could be your Dream’s Greatest Obstacle

You could be your Dream’s Greatest Obstacle

Perhaps you’re in a place where you’re wondering why your dreams just seem to be playing hide-and-seek. There are a number of outside circumstances that can affect their ability to come true, yes, but have you considered that you might be the greatest obstacle?

It might be a tough thought to grasp, but grasping it can be the first step to shifting that dream-limbo reality. How might you be the greatest obstacle?

  1. You’re discouraged by missed opportunities. Discouragement is a rough thing to combat, and it never truly seems to go away even when things are looking up. After a series of unseized opportunities, it can shape your perspective into one that believes you’ve lost all opportunities and it’s time to give up. Nevertheless, discouragement can be beaten, and it doesn’t have to hold you back.
  2. You lack the motivation. I’ve come to believe that some people are more naturally lazier than others, and those individuals do have a tougher time getting places. Though not necessarily something to be ashamed of (we’re only human), it’s not something to be proud of either. A lack of motivation could be the cause, and so it would help to find some, a kind that will truly have a significant longterm effect on you so that it’s powerful enough.
  3. You restrain your potential. Either if it’s done unconsciously or with reason, holding yourself back just doesn’t make sense. There is no such thing as being “ready” for anything, so it will always be expected in vain. There are some mysteries about yourself that you haven’t uncovered yet. You’re never 100% discovered.
  4. You don’t take responsibility for failures. A lack of money or uncooperative people can easily suppress a dream, but putting the blame on them for your unfulfilled dream won’t resolve anything. The thing about those factors is that they can be adjusted with enough nitty gritty effort.
  5. You hang with the wrong crowd. Being around people who aren’t very motivated or goal-oriented is going to really hold you back. Seek out those peers who are innovative, independent, creative, and you’ll find yourself inspired to be the same.
  6. You keep your options a little too open. Quoting from an intriguing article I recently read by Psychology Today: “…our stress befalls the generation with the most optionality yet. This blessing could also be our curse.” It talks about how the stress present in the millennial generation comes from having an endless list of choices, from picking a breakfast cereal to choosing a career path. It’s been proven from research that the more options that are offered, the less likely someone is to make a solid decision. Rather, it makes us shy away and do nothing. Perhaps your dream isn’t happening because you’ve considered too many options. Even though they’re there, and they’re all equally achievable, it doesn’t mean they all should be achieved. You have to pick one path, and stick to that path. (read the article; I highly encourage it)

So, why isn’t your dream happening, you ask? Maybe it’s a matter of time, and maybe it’s something you can do. If you’re in the way, then step aside.

You’re not as stuck as you think

You’re not as stuck as you think

Between the ages of 18 to 30, it’s very easy for one to get discouraged and “stuck.” After all, we’re crawling up a grueling slope of high hopes and meager accomplishments to get just a little close to some of our fairly far-fetched goals. Somewhere along the way, we come a point that appears to be the end. Either we got tired, or resources ran out, or opportunities became slim, or circumstances arose…

You could probably name a specific reason as to why you’re stuck. But are you really as stuck as you think?

During that “stuck” period, or “in between” time, or “taking a break” season (whatever you want to call it), you don’t have to be unproductive. And it doesn’t have to be pointless. First off, I imagine you’re in deep search for something, anything! Perhaps it’s a job, or an internship, or the right school, or the right magazine to submit work to. Here’s a thing: you don’t have to do something longterm. If you just need a job to save some money, then don’t be afraid to settle. It won’t be for long, and it’ll satisfy a need when you need it. If you want to get moving on your education, choose a decent school. If you find something better, you can always transfer. Every opportunity is meant to be a step towards a specific goal, and so nothing would be nothing. Even if a position isn’t related to your desired career, it’s still going to provide a need, particularly in the experience area.

Now, as you’re searching, you should get a little creative. Who says you have to follow norms? There’s all kinds of freelance jobs. What are you good at? Or perhaps you can volunteer with an organization that interests you for a short time. Look beyond your usual search bubble and see what outside-the-box things you can do while you wait to get to that next step.

During this “stuck” period, why not take advantage of the free time? Go out and do something you otherwise couldn’t if you were tied down to a schedule. Sooner or later, once you do have a schedule to stick to, you’ll wish you had done that thing you wanted to when you could.

Perhaps being “stuck” just might be the opportunity to go back to school. By that, it doesn’t have to be university or college, or really any legitimate sophisticated school. You can “go back to school” by taking some free online classes, or teaching yourself a skill on your own. Basically, go out and learn something. This is the time to do it. It may even lead to something new that you originally didn’t consider was an option.

It’s hard to keep your spirits up when you feel like you’re stuck, but really you’re not as stuck as you think. That is up to you, of course.

Bible Devotion: Discouraged or Inspired?

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.

-Psalm 37:7

I don’t just interpret this scripture as fretting when bad things succeed at happening; I imagine this as saying, “don’t fret when others succeed.” We can be moved two different ways when someone is successful: we can be discouraged, or we can be inspired. Which way do you think will get you somewhere?