Goals Are Dreams With Work Boots On.

How do you make things happen? How do you ACTUALLY bring a dream into reality? I was advised by someone wiser than me once, when lamenting that I just “didn’t know what to do”, and wasn’t “sure if what I was doing was the right thing” – that if I didn’t know what my goals were then I would never know if what I was doing were the right things to get me there!

In addition to that – often our goals or dreams for ourselves are not always the “right” goals or dreams. Why? Because they are based on our own limited perspective of the world from the bubble around our heads.

For example, when I was about 4 years old – I remember having 2 very specific dreams…one was to have a castle built entirely out of Cheetos, and the other was to own the perfect pair of life size hot pink high heels with a giant plastic rose atop each toe bed just like the ones my favorite Barbie doll had.  Clearly, my goals at the time, while they truly felt like next level achievements to me where I was at in that moment – in retrospect, were not exactly dreams that were truly worth committing ever valuable time and precious dedication to achieving. And so, I never did.

In contrast, a little later in life, when I was about 6 or 7 – I had a goal (not a dream) to start my own business and make some money. But instead of sitting there simply visualizing this and wafting in my own fantasy for a while, and then coming out of my lovely vision with a sigh, thinking, “Gosh….it sure would be neat to be able to do that.”, and then going on with my day – I instead got to work.

I sat down and thought, “Ok, what are the steps that I need to do in order to make this happen? First, I’m going to need some paper. [To make a list] Then, I’m going to need cleaning supplies [Mom]. Then, I’m going to need customers [Neighbors]. Then, I’m going to need employees [Sisters]. Then I’m going to need a list of prices and advertising [Paper in Mom’s desk and colored pencils].”

I sat at the kitchen table, and while I drafted my rainbow colored list of services – made a game plan to go door to door without cleaning supplies first, and tell all of my customers about my services, and show them the prices. Then I would make a list of people who wanted us to come clean. Then I would go back to my house and gather cleaning supplies for my cleaning appointments and bring my sisters with me to help execute the plan.

And THEN…key step: I actually did all of the things on my list of steps – we did a few minor cleaning jobs for our very kind neighbors who probably thought we were just too cute while removing all of their breakable items from reach before we came over to clean…we got paid – and there was the birth of the first business and the achievement of a goal.

Goals change, as people change, and life changes – but I think one for sure key to figuring out whether you are on the correct path or not, and to truly making things happen – is first of all getting counsel from those who you trust the most in order to evaluate whether your goals are correct and worthwhile – and secondly…put work boots on your dreams by forcing yourself to look at what the ACTUAL steps are to achieving your goals. Are your current actions in line with achieving those goals? Or are you procrastinating, sitting around waiting for them to become reality? Contrary to popular belief, it takes much more than creative visualization to bring an idea to life. Action is required, as is honesty with yourself.

Also, its ok for your goals to change. As our perception of reality and our values shift, so do our goals. I think a lot of people feel confused about where to look for the right perception, or the right ‘values’ in order to be sure they are on track with the right life goals… kudos to those who are at least asking those questions – for they are that much closer to the truth.

So, don’t give up your daydream – but make sure your daydream has a nice, good, strong pair of work boots ready for it to wear when its time to get to work (i.e., become a goal)!

 

 

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Stronger, Easier, Stronger

What if life never gets easier?

What if life stays hard? Like…really hard? What if the bunch of roses we were sold when we were younger,

“It’ll get easier, don’t worry. It’ll get better, don’t worry”, is in fact, 100% complete and total lip service?

REALLY?? Its not going to get easier? Oh man, I don’t know if I can do this… Another 20, 30, 40, 50 years of this level of 24-7 rock climbing? Ummmmm…yyeahhhhhh, if I could just switch on over to Planet NotEarth within a couple of hours here, that’d be greeeeaaaatt…thanks.

But wait! There’s more!

What if…life never gets easier. Life stays hard.
Yet,
It doesn’t really matter whether or not it gets easier – because what happens when hard things occur in life? Or in everyday life?

What happens when you are in the gym, and you lift a size weight that is heavy enough that you struggle with it? Its uncomfortable, it can be painful, the more reps you do and the more you push yourself to do just one more rep. You repeat this process several times over the course of a month or so, and then you add more weights and start the process all over again.

One day you decide to go light for a day just for kicks and you skip back down to the size weights you started with when you first began lifting. And what happens?

They are SO FEATHER LIGHT that You have to CAREFUL not to lift them too swiftly, lest you accidentally shot put them across the gym and knock someone in the head!!

Holy crap! These were SO HEAVY the first time – it sucked! It was painful, and you didn’t know if you could even lift them! It was terrible! You thought, “Why am I even here?? Working out is hard!” But…

You built strength.

The weights didn’t get lighter. They weigh just as much as they did the first time you sweated and struggled underneath them. But over time, you built up the strength and endurance to not only reconcile with them – but in fact, your capacity moved beyond their ability to condition you any further. You graduated. With more muscle! Better blood flow! Greater strength!

It is the same with life.

Life…

Will continue to be hard. Always. But if you are willing to persevere, and press ahead, you will become stronger. And those situations that used to feel impossible, will become eventually much more kindergarten level. You may even enjoy them, eventually!

DISCLAIMER: This does *not* mean stay in an abusive, unhealthy or toxic situation… Know the difference between a functioning situation and a non-functioning one. Do not confuse the value of perseverance with the wrong belief that you should persevere in ANY situation…because that is not true – and that will indeed keep you stuck.

However, when it comes to life in general – use this analogy to remember that it is STRENGTH, cultivated strength, miraculous strength, or any other kind of strength that will make life feel “easier”. Not life itself.

…Sometimes it is really the contrast or the opposite of something that will show you the true answer.

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Let Yourself Be Wrong.

You know that uncomfortable feeling you get when someone calls you out on something you’re doing or have done… that really uncomfortable and kind of slightly claustrophobic feeling like you almost want to jump out of your skin? Its hard to keep looking at them while they’re talking because your fear instantly grows that their critical words might keep being right?

This is very different from times where someone is criticizing you and you genuinely disagree and believe them to be missing the mark – or when someone is using their criticisms to be controlling or manipulative in a calculated way (i.e. people who constantly “blame” or “guilt” you). What I’m talking about are the times where you can feel an uncomfortable spotlight shined onto you and you kind of have an inkling that they might be right. It is a very fine line, actually, and important to know the difference between manipulation and truth – but I think that we often can by the feeling in our body.

That uncomfortable feeling when someone brings up something that we KNOW we have done before and that perhaps many other people before this one, whom we trust, have brought up and shown us this thing before. We’ve already gone over this with other people, and we know that there is a possibility that maybe, just maybe – this person might be right.

Its hard to let go and take responsibility for ourselves – and to change the things that we do that simply are not good.

But in these situations, if we can just let ourselves be wrong, and try to listen to what this person might be telling us – especially if this is someone we love and trust – its a really great segway into really changing some of those character flaws.

The hardest ones, the deepest habits, take a huge willingness to hear criticism, and, if we can identify it as coming from a genuine, concerned and caring place…we should probably listen.

And let those considerations crack us open, stun gun our egos…and really look at ourselves.

We are always improving…but in order to do so, we have to humble up and listen.

 

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