For the last two years, I have traveled along an intentional path of personal growth because I felt limited in life to a point where I could only get so far with my goals and yearned to figure out why. We all have with us different size dream bags that contain the currency of our desires, our values, and our visions. Some of us have really allowed ourselves to fill our bags to the brim and others can fit theirs in their pocket. When it feels like we are not able to spend our currency and realize those dreams even the smallest ones, it causes a feeling of burden and an inability to really take off. Often times we blame the circumstances of life for keeping us down–it must be the weather that has us grounded. This reasoning often falters when we find out people who had it the same or worse seem to be flying all over the place and even doing tricks in the air. So who or what is to blame? The answer is you, you are your wall, you are the barrier, you are the closed door. I say this not so that you beat up or mistreat yourself, but so that you focus your energy and efforts in the right direction.
With the knowledge that I was my greatest limitation, I begin to search for and try as many tools and obtain as much wisdom from successful individuals transversing a similar flight path as mine. Even though the methods and resources may be different for each of us as we work on ourselves and work out our limitations, there are common themes and principles that should be a part of that journey:
Recognize that you don’t know you. There is not one human being on this earth that knows the fullness of who they are. By the time we reach adulthood, we are defined more by others than anything. It is important to test and push against labels and categories that are placed upon us by family, society, church, school, work, or ourselves. We are not what we do. We do based on who we are. The potential for what you can do is infinite. It does not mean that you can do everything. The challenge I give you is to go out and have fun finding out what you can do instead of focusing on what you can’t do. Don’t be afraid to fail because each time you try anything in life, you discover something about who you truly are.
Dream as if you had unlimited resources–a blank check or a trillion dollar bank account. Dreams were never intended to be equal to our present. Dreams are another world, another dimension. Dreams are our juice to keep us going and allow us the force of will to go high and stay high. Several years back, I worked for a public health program for adolescents in a rural community. There were high teen pregnancy rates and a cycle of poverty. We often used a quote from Marian Wright Edelman, an advocate for children’s rights, that said “Hope is the best contraceptive.” To hope is to dream. The more you allow yourself to hope and to dream, the decisions you make will support and align with those hopes and dreams. Be sure to write them down in detail and keep them before your eyes.
Your enemies are fear and doubt. Other people are not your enemies, because they are trying to live this life just like you. You will have adversity, challenges, and tons of problems come into your life as long as you breathe. How you handle fear and doubt will determine your fate and will determine how rich your life is. If you want to achieve victory, acknowledge and get to know your fears and doubts. Know when and where they pop up and work to understand why they do. If you try to ignore them or dismiss them, you are giving them the go ahead to wreck havoc in your life. You diminish their power when you look them dead in the face and tell them you see them. This is where counseling can provide a great resource in helping you see and conquer your true enemies. This fight is not just one battle but a lifetime war. It is okay and don’t be discouraged because you will be reaping so much glory and reward along the way and you will never be fighting alone.
A wise woman told me that we have our dreams and desires for a reason. If they were not possible, we would not have them. Take the reigns off and fly.