History has repeatedly proven this through the lives of many, showing a direct correlation between a person’s level of achievements and the expectations that they set for their life.
Pioneers in every field of life were only able to succeed at great things because they were pulled by a grand vision. They had to first conceive this vision within their mind and then believe, with all their heart, that they could accomplish it.
I like to compare this process to the act of planting seeds. The sowing represents the affirmation of your desires, and the nourishment of the sapling represents the steps, that you take to manifest those desires.
So if you want the plant to bear fruit, it is essential to take the first step which is planting those seeds into the fertile ground of your consciousness.
Yet no matter how appealing the potential rewards of achieving big dreams are, most people fail to take the initiative or get stuck into their pursuit. Strong feelings of hesitancy, self-doubt and worry prevent them from seeing the beauty and validity of their dreams.
The biggest mistake that people make is allowing their fears to cloud their thinking, instead of being led by their vision.
In this emotional state, it is difficult to remain objective enough to consider this very crucial question: Are the limitations in my situation a result of my own fearful thoughts or because of genuine limitations within my current living situation?
In my life I faced the opposite problem. During my younger years, people frequently labeled me as being over -idealistic and impractical. I don’t blame some of them, based on my track record.
There were many times in my life when I charged ahead in certain pursuits with a child-like hope and naiveté, only to crash later on because I turned a blind eye to the reality of those situations.
Yet no matter how hard I fell, I was able to pick myself up again, dust off, and go back to the drawing board with a whole lot more wisdom and valuable insights into what does NOT work for me.
The truth is that even after experiencing a lot of past disappointments, I still would not change my approach towards thinking big, and I am prepared to face the challenges that come with having high expectations for my life.
However, my experiences have made it vividly clear that holding yourself accountable to high standards is not going to be a bed of roses! One would have to be prepared to work harder (and more creatively) than most people do, and be willing to go against the status quo. Your self-confidence and faith will be constantly tested as you face obstacles and disappointments along the way.
The good news is that if you are willing to do the work, and if your idealism is grounded with a healthy dose of logic and a well-thought out strategy, dreams can come true!
If you are still uncomfortable with the idea of chasing “castles in the sky”, I recommend that you follow a process of evaluating the risks and feasibility of a specific opportunity you are considering. I have provided the checklist below to assist you in your discernment process:
- Am I clear about what it is I would like to achieve? This helps you easily identify the action steps you need to take to reach your target, and also makes it easier to measure and review your progress.
- Does this opportunity align with my personal values, ethics and long term vision? You have to ensure that whatever you are considering if in resonance with your authentic self and long-term plans.
- Do I know what needs to happen to attain the outcome I desire? You don’t have it all figured out yet but it definitely helps to have a big-picture perspective on your strategy and be clear about the first few steps you need to take. The road will get clearer as you move along.
- Do I currently have all the resources to make it happen? You need to figure out if you have enough time, money and energy in your present situation to realize this goal. You have to be prepared to make it a priority in your life if you want to see tangible results.
- Am I prepared for this pursuit on a mental, emotional and spiritual level? Remember that the bigger the dream, the more your faith and inner strength will be tested. You will have to do some soul-searching to see if you will be able to handle failure, obstacles and uncertainty in a healthy way. If you can’t handle it on your own, you will need to either take time out to work on building your inner reserves and/or find people who can support you and give you encouragement along the way.
Be aware that this process can seem intimidating at first. At this point, you are like a mountain climber getting ready for a challenging climb, looking up at the snow-covered peak, wondering if you can really make it.
What’s important to remember is that the rewards of your climb do not depend on whether you make it to the top or not but on how much you learn and grow from the character-building experiences during your climb.
All my best on your journey,
Question for you: Pick one personal dream that is very close to your heart. Ask yourself the 5 questions provided in the checklist and then take action accordingly. Is there anything causing you to be afraid to dream big?
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