Have you ever wondered what “living your dreams” meant? Just close your eyes for a minute. Take a long, deep breath. Think: what life you really wish for yourself? What goals do you want to achieve? That’s the dream to follow.
What prevents you from achieving that dream? Fear.
Fear is defined as “an emotional response induced by a perceived threat.” When you’re thinking about following your dreams, there are few threats along the way:
- You might lose your current comfort
- You could lose a lot of money
- You might lose the affection of few people along the journey
- You might fail
The fear of messing up paralyzes you. It makes you ignore the thought “Hey, maybe I can make it!” Fear is practically robbing you of opportunities, and it’s time to stop that pattern once and for all.
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It’s okay to be afraid. It’s not okay to stop chasing your dreams because you’re afraid. Let’s see how you can achieve your dreams even when you’re scared.
Acknowledge Your Fear
Ignoring your fear is the first step towards failure. There are two ways of ignoring it:
- “I’m not afraid to try; I just feel fine where I am now. I don’t need much more.” If that’s your flow of thought, you’ll be stuck in your comfort zone forever.
- “I’m not afraid of losing everything. I’ll do this no matter what.” This is the other extreme. When you ignore the fear, you may start the journey unprepared. You’ll ignore the fact that you might lose things, and you won’t be careful enough.
Listen to the fear. It’s just an emotion. Understand it. It can teach you a valuable lesson: you have to try, but you need to be careful along the way.
Let’s illustrate that through an example: you want to quit your job. You might get into financial trouble if you do it on a whim, but you know you have to do it. Acknowledge your fear. It will make you more careful, but don’t let it paralyze you. So, use fear to make you careful and prepare BUT take the step.
One of the major risks about the process of chasing dreams is being idealistic. It’s important to move towards your goals with a steady, secure step. First of all, it’s important to set realistic goals. It doesn’t matter whether it’s about money, career success, or personal development; you must set goals that you can achieve.
Let’s be real: you can’t set a goal to become fluent in nine languages within six months. You can, however, set a goal to become fluent in one foreign language over a year or two.
Visualize Your Dreams
You have to believe in yourself. There’s a visualization technique that will make you a believer.
Sit in a comfortable position. If you’ve been practicing meditation, get into the seated pose you usually use. Take long, deep breaths. When you tune into your inner self, start visualizing success. See yourself as you want to be. As you will be. See it like it’s real. It will be.
You have gifts and talents. Accept the value you have and stop doubting yourself. See the success in front of your eyes and start chasing it.
Make a Plan and Follow It
When you make the decision that you’re going to do this, you must make a plan. This is the point when fear can be useful to some extent. It teaches you to be more careful. If you run blindly towards the goal, you’ll be clumsy. If you develop a step-by-step plan, you’ll be methodical and confident.
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- Declare your goal. Where do you want to be?
- What steps will lead you in that direction? Break up the big goal into smaller, achievable steps. These are SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound) goals.
- Specify a timeframe.
- Start doing something!
Meditation can help you recognize the fear and face it. It will make you stronger and more persistent. It will help you recognize the causes of fear, and you’ll be able to target them one by one. Turn meditation into a daily routine.
You may take a guided meditation course, but you may also practice in silence. Do whatever works for you, just don’t stop meditating.
It’s not easy to meditate on fear. You have to let it come to surface. When you’re calm and focus, you might experience it stronger than ever. It’s okay. Just acknowledge that emotion and let it go away on its own. Don’t suppress it. Be mindful of it! Over time, meditation can help you overcome fear.
The fear won’t go away when you start making the first steps towards achieving your dreams. No. It will even become stronger. As you get deeper into this journey, the fear will manifest itself in many forms.
“Why did I even start this?”
“I should’ve just stay where I was.”
“I’m gonna fail hard.”
That’s your fear speaking. You have to learn how to fight it on the long run. Even the worst-case scenario is not a disaster. It means you’re trying, so don’t let the thought of failure ruin the journey. You’re doing a great job if you just pick yourself up and continue stronger than ever.
Dreams Are Worth Fighting For
What would you be without dreams? It’s important to be realistic, but that doesn’t mean you should stop believing in yourself. You must stay strong on the journey of life. Fear should not be an obstacle. Turn it into a teacher and carry on, stronger than ever.
About the author:
Eva Wislow is a career coach and HR Executive at CareersBooster.com resumes service. She is on a mission to help people find their true calling. She finds her inspiration in writing and peace of mind through yoga. Connect with Eva on Twitter.