We are not talking about this life and after life. Yet in a matter of sorts, it is an afterlife that comes, once we realize that for the larger part of our life we have been either living someone else’s dream or pursuing a life driven by fear of the unknown, greed for the insatiable and to compete with the worldly ways of those around us. Expectations, comparisons and subordination to others are the three root causes for us unknowingly leading a life not that we would love to lead but one that we force ourselves to lead.
To really live and lead the life that you crave, it is essential that a person be aware of who sets the expectations for you and what are those expectations. Often it is family but it could also be neighbors, teachers and other influential people in our life. They would, with good intent subtly nudge you to tread the beaten path, the one that many others have successfully trod on. Alas that deprives you of the opportunity to explore your dreams, your ideas, give expression to your talents and take risks that would give you a thrill. You will also soon be burdened by the comparisons made by others be it peers, friends, parents, extended family and well meaning influencers about your potential and the success possible. They would also subtly point out to you role models and equally subtly attempt to draw comparisons between you and them. Finally you succumb under the weight of the comparisons and expectations and unwittingly subordinate your dreams to those set by others. You will not take risks, be constrained to meet the standards set by others, possibly also lower your own standards of ethics and morals simply to cope with the demands placed on you.
Once you realize that you cannot afford to waste your life simply because you have just one life, that is when wisdom dawns on you to push aside all external pressures and to follow your heart and your dreams. To do this is not easy but it is very much possible. All you need to do is…
Let your passion lead you. Once you discover what you are passionate about, you will find a hundred different ways in which to pursue it. You will find a way to make every obstacle a stepping stone, every failure a learning experience and create opportunities where none exist. However, finding one’s passion is challenging because there are so many competing and lucrative alternatives that catch our fancy. Let our passion be something that wakes up each day with enthusiasm, make us feel confident of attaining and gives us reason to celebrate when going to bed each night.
Be disciplined. When a person is following his / her passion, nothing is every boring, dull or useless. You have a goal and you map out the way to attain that. However apathy, laziness and casualness are pitfalls that derail even the best laid out plans. You should be motivated, self driven, hardworking and optimistic to walk the talk and make things happen.
Have faith. Far too often, when we encounter some difficulties or impediments or roadblocks to our well laid out plans we tend to worry and even panic. We try alternatives but lack the conviction or self belief that the alternatives will work. Unfortunately we also expect quick changes that we seek and when these do not seem to happen we give up. We then tend to believe that the well intentioned suggestions of others could perhaps be the answer rather than the well thought out and passionate goals you have set for yourself. The key to realizing your passion and leading a life of fulfillment and contentment is in believing in your own abilities and goals.
Have no regrets. When one travels the road less travelled, often it is a lonely path that one furrows. You will experience discouragement, difficulties and disappointments along the way. At times the effort seems wasted, other times the goal seems too distant and occasionally you would wonder if you made a mistake. Never ever regret the courageous steps you took to live your dreams and lead your life. Every moment of that journey is an experience, a challenge you set for yourself and a step forward to your goals.
What are the three alternative career choices you would have made if you had another chance today. ( Ensure that these are not wild thoughts but something that is possible even today ) Now list out what is holding you back from pursuing those dreams. Can you work around these to take a shot at what you are most passionate about?
If you haven’t already tried do you think you could attempt to explore your interests and talents in the following
- Being a chef
- Becoming a magician or juggler
- Trying you hand as a Master of Ceremonies / Stand up comedy
- Becoming a writer / photographer / artist
- A guide at a museum / art gallery / nature trail
- Be a coach for any sport in which you are competent
This post is courtesy www.actspot.com
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