What is your take on dreams?
Are you one of those who believe that any and all dreams can come true? Or do you lean more towards the idea that regardless of effort some dreams can not be achieved?
Are some dreams too grand to become reality?
What if I were to tell you that I'm an amputee living life with just one leg, but my dream is to come first place in a triathlon? Would you tell me that I'm dreaming too big and that chances are that I won't win 1st place in a triathlon? Or would you say that chances are slim, and close to none... but still there is a chance?
My personal belief is that whether you're a dreamer or a realist, both are essentially right. Chances are slim to none that I would win that race... especially if I listen to accept the odds. If I decide in my mind that I'm definitely going to lose the race, then the chances of achieving your goal becomes even more slim. If I submit to the idea that chances are slim, then chances are pretty high that I won't win that race. Chances are good that I might not even try.
But, what about that other group of individuals? The group that understands that chances are slim... but still the chance is there? What if I told you that you can achieve anything you set your mind to, even if it seems impossible? The thing about it is that you have to have a few particular qualities in order to achieve the "impossible." You will need commitment, resilience, focus, drive, consistency and discipline. You will also need to be open to learning, and you will need good time management skills.
Let's explore these topics further.
Commitment to Your Dream
The best of all relationships have an element of commitment to them. Think of your personal goal as a type of relationship between you and the future achievement. You will need to nurture the goal, supply it, care for it, and make it your baby. Just like any good parent/baby relationship there is a level of commitment. You must know ahead of time that things may not be smooth sailing in the beginning. There may be rough patches, it may get hard, and at times you may even shed a tear or two. But regardless of all of this you must remain committed to your goal. All pain shall pass and there is always another brighter day in the distance. Never lose sight of your goals and never give up. Remember, this is your baby. Nobody gives up on their baby, not even when that baby goes through the teething phase. Commit to your dream and see it through. Giving up on your dream is not an option.
Okay so you're committed to achieving your dream, but times are hard. You're a single mother trying to work, care for the kids, and earn a college degree. You're tired! This is tough and you're wondering if this has all been a mistake. You're considering letting of go of your dreams, but I urge you not to. This is the point where you will be thankful for having resilience.
Resilience is defined as the "ability to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions." It's being able to bounce back from failure, and push forward through difficulties. Resilience is the thing you will need to pull out from the tool box every once in a while. I can assure you that there will be times where you want to quit. There will be moments that you question whether you should push forward or just let it go. Times get hard. But you must be able to withstand the hardships you will endure while chasing your dreams. Practice resilience over and over again. Remind yourself that you're being resilient and push forward through every pain, never forgetting that the most brilliant stones are formed under pressure.
Focus is the ability to tune out all of the irrelevant noise and distractions. It's the skill that allows you to keep your eye on your goal regardless of what else may be going on in your life. Being focused allows you to choose a direction, follow through, and make any necessary corrections to keep yourself on track. It's prioritizing your dreams and then acting upon them, when you're focused you're spending a lot of time thinking about your goals and dreams. Being focused is holding onto the mantra that "if you can think it, you can make it happen."
Being consistent is defines as "the act of doing something in the same way over time, especially so as to be fair or accurate." "It is unchanging in nature, standard, or effect over time." (Webster Merriam dictionary) Being consistent simply means putting in work again and again over a period of time. It's sticking to the plan and never deviating from the work required to achieve your goal.
Being consistent can prove to be a difficult feat if your are naturally an inconsistent person, or if you aren't seeing any results from your work. The latter is especially hard, but you must practice and remain consistent. What ever the dream, break it up into smaller short term goals and work through it without failure. Never make an excuse not to remain consistent. Even when you think you aren't making much headway, still remain consistent and put in the mandatory work. Without consistence, your dream will take much longer to achieve. With consistency, you will arrive to your destination faster and with better results.
A disciplined person is one who thrives on order and predictability. They impose order in their lives by establishing routine, and focusing on deadlines. If you are not a naturally disciplined person, fear not. You can still reap all of the benefits. Practice discipline by making the steps towards your goal predictable. Write them out and create a routine. Discipline yourself by sticking to the plan no matter what. Establish a routine and stick to it. For example, I've set aside 2:30–3:15 pm every weekend, and 12–1 every week day to practice violin. I am going to practice discipline by sticking to that no matter what. Even when my friends want to make plans for the same time.
Focus is a component that is going to back you up here. But we're human and sometimes we drop the ball. If that's the case remember that you're resilient, and just get back on the ball and keep rolling.
Openness to Learning
Being open to learning new things plays a key role in achieving dreams. Have you ever heard that "knowledge is power"? Well it most definitely is. The more you know about a subject, the more power you have over it. What ever your dream may be, you need to make a commitment to learning it inside and out. You need to know every aspect of it so that you can concur it. If your dream is become a teacher who has a major positive impact on children, then you must learn all you can about children, teaching, how children learn, etc. You will need to know what types of actions make positive impact on children. You will need to know how their brains operate, how to reach them, what's legal, etc. Knowledge is power, and power will propel you beyond the odds and help you achieve your dreams.
Time management plays a key role in achieving your dreams. If you're like most people, your dream doesn’t just make money for you right out of the gate, or you have other responsibilities. Managing your time is vital if you have school, work, family or a social life to maintain. Without managing your time, things like being disciplined become harder to do. To practice time management, begin by setting a list of daily or weekly goals. Break down that list and schedule time to complete each component of the list.
When applying these 5 concepts along with faith in yourself, you can and will achieve your dreams. Remember to remain committed to your goal, and be consistent. Don't forget that you're human. If you drop the ball when it comes to consistence, just practice resilience and get back into the groove of things. Discipline yourself and work towards your goal even when the tough gets going, and you just want to quit. Manage your time and always be open to learn about your goal.
Best of luck to you on achieving everything you've ever dreamed. Your dreams are achievable, regardless to how far out reach they may seem.
You can do all things.