When we were younger, adults around us would indulge our dreams of being a ballet dancer, train driver, doctor, race car driver, actor, or even an astronaut. But as we grow up, we come to realise that some dreams are very difficult to attain, and very often we unfortunately give up on our dreams. But this doesn’t have to happen – you can find a way to somehow live one version of your dream. For instance, you might not become a Formula One driver, but you might become a mechanic working for a top team. This takes a great deal of dedication, in order to gain the qualifications needed, but it’s much more realistic than being a driver. The worst thing you can do is think “it’s hopeless, and I will never achieve my dream, so I will settle much less”. That way, you’ll always wonder what might have been.
There is no denying that hard work is required. Nothing comes easily, except to the extremely lucky few. But hard work is honestly something within everyone’s grasp. Find out what qualifications or qualities you need in order to follow your dream, and then go for it. Ask for help if you struggle, but work your socks off until you succeed. You really will not regret it.
Secondly, don’t be distracted by smaller goals that take you away from the big goal. If you want to write a book, set aside some time each day to write or go and sit in your room for that period of time, so you can think about what to write. Don’t be tempted to “just put it off this once”, because pretty soon “once” will be every day. You need to get in the habit, if you’re sure this is what you want to do. Even if what you write that day has to be rewritten, you’ve at least made a start. The same goes if you have to study hard to get a qualification – set as many hours as you need each day, to make sure you make the best of your education.
A dream shouldn’t be just about earning lots of money. At the end of the day, however much you earn will still not be enough – you will only strive for more. Constant dissatisfaction and thinking “the grass is always greener on the other side” does not lead to happiness. The job itself should bring you enormous pleasure, and if it pays well, that’s a bonus. It should allow time for enjoying yourself outside of work, whether that means spending time with your family, or having time to pursue a hobby, such as cooking, gardening or other social activities.
One thing you need to remember is to not let rejections get to you. You have to risk failure and be able to bounce back. J K Rowling (the author of the Harry Potter series, as you may well know) was rejected 12 times before acceptance. Yet she had faith and kept sending the manuscript out – and look where she is now! Learn from any rejections, dust yourself off, and try again. If you do not try, you’ve already failed. Above all, don’t live your life regretting what could have been.
Image from: http://archive.wizards.com/Magic/magazine/article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/mm/198