Let’s face it. We all have hopes and dreams of some sort. Without dreams, what hope is there? Some of us have people in our lives, whether it’s friends, family members or just acquaintances, who try to tell us that we can’t have our dreams. I don’t know about you, but that kind of negativity makes me want it even more. My husband, Jim Bellacera, says, “If the dream is big enough, the facts don’t count.”
It’s crucial to know exactly what you want and don’t want. By this, I mean being so connected with your mind, heart, and soul that you need no outside help to understand your hearts calling. It means to know what you ache for and choose not to do the things that drain your spirit.
Awareness does not come easy. But being aware and then making a start is equally difficult. Making a start and going all the way—that’s epic!
I’ve made numerous starts in my time, and I have confronted and overcome some major hurdles. If you can identify your hurdles early on, it will be much easier to get started.
Here are some of the hurdles you may come up against:
- Lack of drive
The drive to pursue your heart’s desire will surface only when you recognize and accept that you’re not passionate about what you’re currently doing.
When you stop being complacent and acknowledge that your life doesn’t excite you, you will feel an overwhelming need to take that first step toward your dreams.
Do you enjoy how you spend your time and feel like you’re making the impact you want to make?
- Risk of failure
Enormous, long-term goals with precise planning may sound like they will cover the risk for you. But, in my experience, they do just the opposite. They can create a terror in your heart even before you get started. They may even be so overwhelming that they may prevent you from getting started at all.
It’s not prudent to get caught up in long-term plans at any stage of your project or entrepreneurial journey. A better approach is to focus on the baby steps that connect you to your passion and conviction.
I would suggest that you start with goals that are realistic for you to attain. Then start working toward a 2-week or a 3-week goal and assessing what you’ve achieved often.
This helps you respond to change quickly and efficiently and allows you to create value at greater speed and frequent intervals. When you’re creating value every week, every day, no matter how small it is— rather than achieving something tangible a year down the line—you will be firing motivation on all cylinders.
You won’t have to worry about failing at something huge because you will experience small successes at every step of the way.
- Lack of clarity
Often we have clear dreams but hazy thinking on how to convert those dreams into reality. We get so busy with our day-to-day living that we don’t make the time to think about what steps we need to take.
Until you create the time to think about what you want and need to do, you will keep spinning in circles within your head, waiting for the day when you suddenly feel enlightened or prepared.
Only when we are thinking consciously will our thoughts carry the power to execute.
- The need to do things perfectly
The perfect time, the perfect method, the perfect idea—these are all illusions that keep us distancing from our dreams. They may be excuses for procrastinating things years away: “When the kids grow up…” “When I get my next promotion…” “When I have more money…”
Or they may be excuses to put things off by a few weeks or months: “When my child’s summer vacation is over…” “When I finish this project…”
Oftentimes, these are lies we tell ourselves to avoid taking the plunge.
There is no such thing as a perfect idea or a perfect method. Many ideas can be effective if we back them with a sense of purpose and then learn to adjust as we go.
- Fears about letting go
Maybe you’ve devoted years to training in your field and building a career only to realize you’re not passionate about what you do. This can make it challenging to let go and walk away. After all, you’ve already spent a good part of your life pursuing your profession, increasing your earning potential, and making a name for yourself.
You might feel highly resistant to abandoning that profession and pursuing something else. You may also think it is the same as accepting and declaring that your work and life this far were a waste.
The only thing that’s wasteful is denying what you really want.
Living your life on your terms starts with living consciously and courageously and being true to yourself. It may mean letting go of the things you have accumulated and unlearning all that you have learned until now; it may mean fighting a lone battle; it may even mean holding on to your belief in the face of reproach, disapproval, and discouragement. But it’s worth doing.
So, go ahead and crush the fears, demolish the doubts, overpower the naysayers, and take that one leap of faith to be who you want to be—no matter what your age, gender, culture, or boundaries. Remember, you have the greatness within you to do and be whatever you want!