There are many people who have dreams, of running their own business to becoming a writer etc. An American business consultant, Patrick Lenzioni, states the number of people unhappy with their jobs, is at an all-time high. It seems many of us just go through the days, waiting expectantly for the day we will retire. But why do so many of us hold back from pursuing our dreams?
TOP UNTRUTHS/REASONS WE & OTHERS TELL OURSELVES
1. Our dream is unrealistic/Very few people make it/It’s impossible
Sometimes we may tell ourselves or others may convince us, that our dream is unrealistic and unachievable. But who is to say so if it hasn’t been attempted? It is more unrealistic to keep doing a job and living a life you hate, instead of trying to effect change for yourself.
The fashion and entertainment industry is very large, as are many other industries that we may desire to break into. But it is a myth to believe that you won’t make it. With persistence, drive, ambition and hard work anything is possible. Find your individuality: everyone has something that makes them stand out. I am unique in my own dream as I have the heart to show that people of colour can also be in the forefront of fashion in Australia and in countries where they are the minority. I also love fashion and modelling and believe I have a unique look. Furthermore, if you are so passionate about something and you feel it in your heart, believe and expect it, eventually doors will start to open. You are the only one that can stop you…your only limitation is your mind. And even if you go through some pain to achieve it, that can be your motivation to keep pushing.
What is the definition of ‘making it’? I have my own definition of success, based on what I want to achieve and what is important to me. One person’s definition of ‘making it’ may certainly not be the same as the next person, so do what sits right with you and don’t live for anyone else.
2. Fear and lack of self-belief
Understandably, many of us are afraid to fail. But many successful people have failed and have kept getting up and trying again. If I did not keep knocking at people’s doors over and over again, even when I’m told no, I would not have been given the chance to do more than half of the things that I have done. To get a spot in the Cairns Eye magazine, I rung up the editor several times a month because I believed so strongly that there should be more people of colour in the fashion feature. It took me more than 6 months, but eventually I was able to be in it, worked hard during the shoot and loved every minute of it.
Remember Chris Gardner, (Will Smith played his character in ‘The Pursuit of Happyness)? He went through being a homeless salesman, to being unpaid for several months in a job that he loved BUT eventually got hired as a stockbroker – his dream job.
A Zimbabwean life coach, Tatenda Nhema, always tells me, ‘at times you just have to live through your fear, you have to roar like a lion does, before attacking its prey’. There are many times that I’m afraid of failure, afraid of what people will say or think’, but I just take a step of faith each time.
3. ‘You can’t do that, people your age do this & that, you should do this, not that’
Oftentimes we will follow what society expects us to do. But why do something you have no heart or desire to do and live a miserable life? It’s about following what you believe in and finding your own way to achieve it. As Guy Kawasaki, from Garage Technology Ventures says, ‘if you make meaning, you will probably make money, but if you start out to make money, you will probably not make meaning or money’. So follow your heart and that will often lead to success…and financial comfort will follow. I do some unpaid modelling work and even though it would be great to be paid for everything I do, I do everything with a passion and it feels more rewarding when I am doing something from the heart...that I love. I’m willing to sacrifice financial comfort, on my path towards my dreams.
HOW CAN WE KEEP OUR DREAMS ALIVE?
- Don’t be afraid to dream…believe in yourself and ignore those who tell you your dream is ‘silly’
- We live in a society where we want instant results, but you have to realise that everything takes time and with hard work, goals can be achieved
- Make a plan and be willing to take action, including being persistent
- Don’t ‘copy’ someone else who is successful in the same field: even though it’s great to have a mentor or someone you look up to, you are your own person and when you work from your own heart, dreams are more achievable if you follow your own way
- Failures are just steps towards success so ‘dust yourself off’ & keep going