Raise your hand if you’ve talked yourself out of doing something you needed to do for your own growth. Far too often we wait and wait because we feel we lack the right qualifications/skill set to act on our dreams, and we rob ourselves of the opportunity to discover life in the chaos and beauty of the unknown.
In her exquisite book Playing Big, Tara Mohr talks about the particular behaviours that keep women from playing bigger in their lives and careers. One big obstacle is setting aside our dreams because we feel we can’t make them happen.
Tara says, “When a calling arrives in our minds and hearts, we usually don’t have what we need to complete it. We can see we’re missing connections, knowledge, and resources we think we need, so we often conclude the calling isn’t really meant for us. In fact, not having what we need at the outset is one of the telltale characteristics of a calling. The mistake is turning away from the call because of those perceived lacks. Instead, we can simply begin, and gather the resources, connections, and knowledge needed as we walk the journey of doing it.”
Kinda takes the wind out of your excuses, doesn’t it?
The truth is there’s always a small step forward that moves us closer to our dreams; we’re just afraid to take that step. It’s daunting to consider exiting your comfort zone, but it’s deadening to stay stuck in it. We wither when we fail to challenge ourselves and stretch our capacities. Would you rather be numb or pulsing with life?
What if you’re held back by something else?
Again, Tara says, “You aren’t the person you need to be to complete the calling—yet—but pursuing the calling will develop those lacking capacities in you. Herein lies the dual purpose of our callings: to enrich the world and to grow, in just the ways we need to grow. When we turn away from our callings, we’re turning away from our customized curriculum for personal growth.”
Again, what’s your excuse? Just not ready? Too old, too young, too fill-in-the-blank? Afraid you’ll fail or the sky’ll fall down on you? You can get past each and every one. Besides, if you’re not failing, you’re not growing. How can you fail upwards so you turn your “failure” into a success?
We’re never really ready for the things that elevate us. You can prepare for it, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be ready. It simply means you’re willing to take the next step, and the next, and the next. It means you decide to move forward in spite of the chatter in your head so you can experience a richer, sweeter slice of life.
You know your excuses. You know the actions that’ll smash them to bits and catapult you forward. You know what to do to start and take it from there.
Question is, are you willing?
The things that hold us back are never as powerful as our ability to overcome those things if we choose. Having a seemingly impossible dream doesn’t mean you can’t make it happen—it simply means you’ll pick up what you need on the way.
It’s time to make space for what you need to show up so you can move closer to your dreams. Are you willing?
Photo credit: Creative Commons.