Remember when you were younger, and you had dreams of being a teacher, doctor, actor, astronaut, etc? Our parents would tell us we could do anything we set our minds to. Once we become adults, however, we tend to make excuses for why we cannot pursue our dreams. We settle for jobs that will never satisfy us just to pay the bills.
Without ambition one starts nothing. Without work one finishes nothing. The prize will not be sent to you. You have to win it.Ralph Waldo Emerson
Overcoming the Barriers Within Us
The two main things that get in the way of us following our dreams are self-doubt and fear. As humans, it’s natural to doubt ourselves. We tend to focus on all the negative outcomes. Eventually, our dreams fall into the abyss.
Maybe you want to be a doctor, but you worry that you aren’t smart enough to get through medical school, or you don’t want to spend 8+ years in college when you’re already in your 40’s. Yes, medical school will be tough, and you will have to work very hard to succeed. But if you truly want to be a doctor, you shouldn’t worry about the necessary time and energy it will require in order to make it happen.
We are our own worst critics; we must stop doubting ourselves and have the courage to take that leap of faith in order to live the life we always dreamt of.
Overcoming the Critics Around Us
There are countless people who were told they weren’t good enough. They faced criticism that would have discouraged most people; but despite all adversity, they pushed through and succeeded.
Here are a few people you may recognize who failed (sometimes multiple times) before succeeding.
- Steven Spielberg was rejected TWICE by the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts. The school later built a building in his honor.
- Thomas Edison‘s teachers told him he was “too stupid to learn anything.” He went on to hold more than 1,000 patents, including one for the phonograph and a practical electric lamp.
- Theodor Geisel had his first book rejected by 27 different publishers. Today, he’s better known as Dr. Seuss and has sold more than 600 million copies of his iconic children’s books worldwide.
It’s Up to You
In conclusion, stop doubting yourself. Let go of fear. If you have a dream, no matter how old you are, go for it! Who knows? You may be the next Dr. Seuss, Thomas Edison, or Steven Spielberg.