Would your childhood self be happy with the person you are today? Are you living your dreams? This article may help you find the path…Are you where you want to be professionally? Personally? If you’re like most people, chances are you’re not. Have you ever stopped to ask yourself, “Why?” Why haven’t you achieved those dreams of success yet? Why haven’t you been promoted? Why aren’t you living the life you truly want to live?
Most people today are living empty lives – lives of unfulfilled dreams and passions. Seeing this breaks my heart, because I know it’s possible. I know that every single person alive has within them what it takes to live their dream life, to change their life and the lives of everyone around them.
Yet no one does. The amount of people living their dreams is staggeringly low. 1 out of a 100 would be a generous estimate, but it’s more like 1 out of a 1000, or even 10,000.
When was the last time you spent took time to ask yourself why you’re not living your dreams? Before continuing this article, take some time to reflect upon your current situation. What’s been holding you back? I’ll wait…
So, what did you come up with? The answers will be very telling. In fact, the type of answers are more important than the actual answers.
Who Do You Blame?
If you’re unsatisfied with your job, did you blame your terrible boss? Or perhaps it was those asshole clients who make your life difficult. Maybe the reason you’re unsatisfied with your job is because you didn’t get into your school of choice or don’t have the right degree. Or maybe your parents were too poor so you were unable to attend college.
Are you not living your dreams because there’s too much in the way? Too much in the past, present, or future?
Do your answers sound similar to these? If they do, that’s good! That means we have something to work with.
What do all of these answers have in common? They are all blaming something outside of you. These types of answers indicate that you’re not taking responsibility for your situation.
Bill Gates has a great saying, “If you are born poor it’s not your mistake. But if you die poor it’s your mistake.”
This means taking personal responsibility for your situation, no matter how bleak or abysmal it is. No matter how many unfortunate things have been thrust upon you.
Why is personal responsibility so important? If you don’t take personal responsibility for your current situation, you are giving away your power. You are giving away your agency.
When you blame something or get angry at something, you give that thing power over you. That thing has control over you, your emotions, your situation. Is that what you want?
Every time you get angry at your boss, you are giving your boss power over you, power over the way you feel, power over the way you choose to see the day.Did you notice that word I emphasized? You CHOOSE the way you are being. Many people say they had no choice in the matter. They are angry people, so if their boss is being terrible, they have no choice but to get angry.
Doesn’t that sound weak and powerless? It does because it is! It takes courage to not react the way someone wants you to react. It takes courage to CHOOSE how you’re going to be.
That’s because, when you choose, you become responsible. You can no longer blame someone else. When you choose you take your power back, and this power is scary.
Most people live a life of powerlessness. When power suddenly comes rushing back into their life, it scares them and they push it away. It’s counter-intuitive, but it’s very true.
You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink. In the same vein, you can lead a person to power but you can’t make them powerful, only they can do that.
Do You Blame Yourself?
The other type of answer to, “Why aren’t you where you want to be” revolves around blaming yourself. You’re not strong enough, you’re not good enough, you don’t know the right people, you’re not living in the right city.
Do you blame yourself?
If you blame yourself, this is a good thing. You’ve gone one level deeper, beyond blaming other people.
Blaming yourself is still rooted in not taking personal responsibility for your situation. The difference is that your excuses are internal instead of external.
You are giving up your power based on a belief that you, yourself, are not good enough, not worthy enough, to accomplish your dreams. And so, you wait.
And you wait. You wait for some magic moment that will change your life so you can begin living your dreams.
I’ve got news for you, there is no magic coming. There is no external force you can rely on. You think winning the Powerball is going to bring you out of poverty? Think again. In fact, 7 out of 10 lottery winners spend all of their winnings within 3 years.
The reason for this is simple, most people who play the lottery believe they can’t be rich, they can’t make themselves rich, and the only way to move up in the world is to get lucky. If they win, their external world has changed but their internal beliefs have stayed the same.
Your external world is always a reflection of your internal world. If your internal world is one of poverty, you will live in poverty.
You have to look at yourself. Truly see yourself for who you are. To get past these internalized excuses you have to accept the person you see in the mirror, flaws and all.
What Is Underneath Everything?
Ultimately, that’s the question we need to ask ourselves. Why do we make excuses? Why aren’t we truly pursuing our dreams?
The reason is one word:
If you weren’t fearful of something you’d be pursuing your dreams immediately. It’s literally as simple as that.
You fear failure, you fear being laughed at, you fear being broke and homeless, you fear what other people will think, you fear nonexistence.
Look close enough at your doubt and unwillingness to take action and you will find fear, always. Procrastination, or lack of action, is fear in disguise. Fear of leaving your comfort zone, fear of failure, fear of being seen. These all accompany procrastination.
I want you to look at your dreams, at your goals in life, and look at the fears that are holding you back. It might not be easy, you might deny they even exist, but they do. Yes, they do. And until you can acknowledge them they will continue to hold you back your entire life.
Fear of upsetting your family, fear of success, fear of responsibility. If things go wrong I’ll be blamed! I don’t want that responsibility!
Face Your Fears
The only way out is through. There is no way around your fear. Begin taking steps today, no matter how small, towards your fear. Step into your fear. Experience it for what it is, and then take another step.
It will be scary, it will be painful. Nothing great was ever accomplished without fear and pain. Without pain there could be no life! Think about that for a moment. Without pain there could be no life.There is no such thing as security or comfort. We modern humans invented these concepts and fetishized them to the point where it’s now taboo to be uncomfortable!
People will look at you sideways if you’re putting blood, sweat, and tears into your goals! If you’re not spending your Friday and Saturday nights with Netflix & chill people ask what’s wrong.
What Is The Alternative?
The alternative is that you remain on the couch, you remain in your bed, you remain in your dead end job that you hate.
You spend 50 hours a week at a job that doesn’t inspire you, you spend 50 hours a week at a job that eats away at your soul.
Your hopes and dreams will become a distant memory, a phantom. Within a few years they may even be gone.
And then what are you? A human with a dream is not a human at all. If you succumb to your fears you’ll live your entire life incarcerated by your false beliefs.
To put this into perspective, I want you to imagine an inmate at a maximum security prison. He has no hopes, no dreams, no future. But he’s ok because he has a posturepedic bed and Netflix.
Is that the life you want to live? What happened to exploring the world? What happened to starting your own business? What happened to helping veterans get back on their feet? What happened to becoming an astronaut? A singer? A painter? A citizen of this world? What happened to that fire in your eyes?
I’ll ask you again, “What are you afraid of?”