How can I be more courageous with this precious life and follow my dreams?What am I meant to do with this life? How do I navigate these feelings that come up to check in with me and see if I am on the right path? The path that makes me ecstatic with joy to wake up and do each day. The path of passion where my soul is free, where I get to express myself creatively and make things that feel good to me. The path where so much time goes by and I am having so much fun and I am so engaged that I don’t even notice. I am not checking the clock to know when I get my next break, or when I will get to go home. The path where I am not wishing time would go faster so I don’t have to be where I am, so that I can be some where else. The path that I leave my day of “work” so full of energy and excited for the next day’s work. I have to keep checking in with myself right now, as I often put myself into boxes thinking this is what I want to do with my life, this is how I will make a good living and will get to do what I like. I put myself in a box that doesn’t include what would make me beyond ecstatically joyful, what my heart mind and soul all yearn for.
I settle for the next best thing. Then once I get it, or some form of it, I wonder well this isn’t it. How did I end up here?
How many times have you settled for the next best thing, rather than your truest, biggest desire? You settled thinking, well what I really want to do is over there, but I am going to do this because it makes more sense, I will make more money at it, it won’t be as risky, etc. Then when you get that next best thing and everything seems to be going as planned, you wonder why you are not super happy. “But I have everything that I said that I wanted,” you think as you look at your life. But do you really? See there is a fine line between being grateful for what you have (which we should be, no matter what) and then dreaming of the future of what you want. But anytime we make the excuse I won’t make any money doing that, the more we bury ourselves in an early grave of regret or longing that we will feel later, at some point in life when we have those feelings of wishing we had done it differently.
I say do it NOW. Whatever that dream is that you have that you would like to express, I mean that really big dream that answers the question “What would you do if you could do absolutely anything and money was no object?” What do you desire most of all? When I really think about that question, the answer for me is always make documentaries/films that involve some travel around the world (not constantly traveling, but some travel). It is also to be an international author and speaker on living the awakened life and taking the road less traveled. When I think about this dream that I have, I can easily get caught up in the “how do I do that’s,” “I won’t make any money at that for a while,” “it will be really hard,” etc. The late, great Alan Watts says that “if you say that getting the money is the most important thing, you will spend your life completely wasting your time. You will spend your time living, doing things you don’t like doing in order to go on living doing things you don’t like doing, which is stupid.”
When I am on my deathbed will I be thinking, I am really glad I didn’t do that thing I wanted to do and decided to have that pretty good 9-5 because I made decent money? For me the answer is NO! The problem with the road less traveled is that it is uncertain, but unfortunately nothing in life is certain, not even the easier road. The easier road just gets you things you want a bit more quickly, like money and a “secure” life. Yet, there are going to be bumps and unexpected twists and turns and upsets and great joys and triumphs too. There will be highs and lows no matter which road you take.
To me the road less traveled is the one where the opportunity to feel and be really alive and really live in the juiciness of the moment is available. The underlying feelings of misery and unhappiness are not available, because even when things are looking like they are failing at least you can say you are on your path. You are moving in a direction that is towards your destiny, what you came here to do.
When I ask myself the question, “What would I do if money were no object, how would I really enjoy spending my life,” and the answer is making films that inspire and take me around the world to shoot them and that is not what I am doing right now, it makes me think. I have seen myself create jobs for myself that have fit a certain thing that I have wanted at the moment, mostly for the reason that it will bring me money. I have even created some jobs that I really loved for a time that brought me both money and freedom to some extent. But there has not been one single thing that I have ever done that has fulfilled me, that made me not question “is this it?”
So if what I want to do is make films and be an international writer and speaker then what can I do NOW to take a step towards that dream? Before I begin creating yet another path that is not necessarily my destiny’s path. I have decided that I can do assisting work in the film world now, like PAing, or working with a director. I have put some emails and feelers out to people I know in the business and trust that an opportunity will come along so I can begin to get my feet wet in this world. In my own business I am shifting my focus from individual clients (which I will still do of course) to teaching more groups, giving me more opportunities to speak publicly about what I love and of course continue to write. I have taken something that seems impossible to the outsider and made it totally doable in the here and now, instead of waiting until later to make it happen.
Take baby steps in the direction of your dream, even if it is just taking a class or making a phone call to a friend that has done something similar. Don’t get overwhelmed by your dream, just take a baby step each day. Lastly, don’t worry if you are not good at what you want to do, remember no one is ever really good at anything at first, but they practice and learn and get great!
Don’t let fear win out over your dreams! Don’t conform to what others tell you to do! Be courageous with your precious life!
I leave you with a quote from Steve Jobs “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. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart
We all have identities that we have taken on. What most of us do not know is that these identities hold a list of rules