I remember looking up from my desk, fighting distractions but the thoughts still came rushing in with such force that I couldn’t seem to organize them. I wasn't in the right place and I wasn't doing the right thing. What was my next step? After five years working in my 9 to 5, I felt robotic and dispassionate.
I had always wanted to be a writer, it was even my major in college, but knowing that it paid so little and success was rare, I had blown off my dreams for the dreams of someone else.
It was at that point, sitting in my cubicle in a small town in South Carolina that I made my decision--I was going to be a writer. I’ve never regretted my decision and wake up each morning excited for the day to come.
1. Acknowledge your dreams.
I had always wanted to be a writer. In fact, I remember trying to write a novel when I was 7 years old. But it still took me five years of employment to realize that my dreams were my own--mine to work toward or mine to deny. Decide what you want out of life and go for it.
2. Create a plan.
Lay out what important things must take place for your dreams to come true. What steps must be accomplished for your dreams to become a reality?
3. Don’t wait for someday.
Don’t put your dreams off, get working on them right now. While planning is of course a necessity, putting your dreams off means they may never come true.
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma, which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice, heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” --Steve Jobs
Lay out mini steps to accomplish your goals. Where do you hope to be in two years? What about five years? Figure out what steps need to be taken to meet the goals you need for success.
5. Review progress.
Set dates on your calendar to take a look at how far you’ve come and where you need to go.
6. Get some confidence.
You have to believe that you can accomplish your goals in order to accomplish them. Notice self doubt when it starts to materialize. Noticing when it comes on is half the battle. You deserve to be happy and get what you want out of life no matter what it takes to reach your goals. But if you don’t believe that you’re capable of reaching your goals, then your own negative talk will actually keep you from reaching them.
7. Beat down distractions.
What daily distractions keep you from working toward your goals? Look very closely at the way you spend your day and beat down distractions before they begin to eat away at your dreams.
8. It’s not luck.
We often want to think that only the lucky ones realize all their dreams. That’s not true, it's only a little bit of luck, it's also hard work, focus, confidence, and optimism.
9. Understand that failure isn’t always a bad thing.
If you don’t get the job you dreamed of or your small business doesn’t make it, that’s not always a bad thing. Sometimes failure helps us move toward realizing our true dreams or we learn something.
“Failures are simply stepping stones to success. No matter how it turns out, it always ends up just the way it should be. Either you succeed or you learn something. Win-Win. The biggest mistake you can make is doing nothing because you’re too scared to make a mistake. If you can’t handle failure, then you can’t handle success either.” --MarcandAngelHackLife
If you really love what you’re doing then hard work isn’t work at all. People with a passion have trouble separating work and play because they truly love their life. It’s okay to work really hard.
Photo: Mikhail Dudarev/Mangostock/Rnl
Read More: 6 Ways to Find Focus