Have you noticed that some people truly feel like there is so much opportunity waiting for them on this planet, both professionally and personally, that it would take ten lifetimes to get to it all??? And yet, there are countless numbers of people who are just resigned to suffering through each day? Trying their best to muster a smile, hoping to make it through without being bruised too badly, not even remotely aware that they have assigned themselves to living an entire lifetime in the land of “just enough”.
So, what’s the difference between these two groups of people? We can’t say its circumstance, because this has been widely disproven through modern research. There have been countless cases of twins with the same genes and same upbringing who end up with extremely different life results. I personally believe it’s the power of choice. Give yourself a quick reality check: which category of person do you see in the mirror today? One who’s staring at a lifetime of opportunity … or a lifetime of just getting by? To become one of those rare achievers who actually lives their dreams, we’re going to have to start making some different choices, would you agree?
Remember, you are only ONE decision away from the person you want to be. And you don’t have to remain stuck in the person you used to be. Not even the person from 5 minutes ago! That ONE decision can move you from mediocrity to excellence for the rest of your life…for the rest of your family’s life. Don’t waste your life living out some old broken record, or even someone else’s dreams. If you had the power to create the life of your dreams for your family…and you knew you couldn’t fail…AND, no one around you had the power to steal your dream, what would you want? What does that dream look like? How would you feel, look, act, and conduct yourself to the world if you were LIVING in that dream life right now? Next question: if you were to travel the road from “knowing” to “doing” on a daily basis, would it take you closer to that dream life? In other words, if you were to daily ACT on your dream, rather than simply thinking or planning, would it make a difference? I’m going to boldly answer for you: YES!!
So, why do we doubt that we’ll actually be able to do it? Because we’re living out of our PAST! You must release it. You are not that person anymore. The past is just that – the past! Are you going to spend the rest of your days re-living the past you that you no longer want to be? Or, are you going to muster every ounce of courage and self-discipline in your body and move forward into the future with the new you?!? God planted within you the seeds of greatness! And he planted great big, huge scary dreams within you as well. Do you know why He didn’t give you little tiny, mediocre, easily achievable dreams? Because then you wouldn’t need to rely on Him with every fiber of your being to reach them! He is ready and waiting to knock your socks off! Are you ready for the ride of your life?!? Then hang on, peeps. Because as soon as you say “GO!” – and truly mean it – you will experience greater joy, greater fulfillment, and greater exhilaration in your little body than you ever even imagined could be possible.
Change is never easy. Change is hard. Change takes time. Change takes courage. Change takes discipline. Change takes immense strength. Change takes going against the grain…going against the tide…going against the crowd. It’s important to count all of these costs. But then you must ask yourself one question: Can you really afford NOT to make the change? So, how do we manage to stop the madness of the path we’re on and actually force ourselves to make those necessary changes that we want so badly to make? How do we move past the fear and complacency?
It comes back to another choice. We must make the choice to step it up a notch into short-term superior performance for long-term gain. Now that we realize the power of our choice, we can get excited to crank it up a notch. And, we can choose to work from discipline as we realize a powerful truth: Yes, I might be my own boss or in charge of my own dreams. But freedom doesn’t really mean ‘giving myself the day off whenever I want’. Nope, contrary to popular belief, that’s not real freedom. Nor is it good work-ethic, or good entrepreneurial skills. That’s simply & weakly living compulsively. Because, the truth is that we haven’t earned the right to turn it off when we want to turn it off until we’ve developed the discipline to turn it on when it’s time to turn it on. You see, success doesn’t happen on a whim. Success doesn’t happen on its own. Victory in the battlefield of life only comes to those who refuse to surrender to a life of complacency and mediocrity. Are you expecting to actually win your battle? Or have you already counted yourself as a casualty?
Sadly, many of us are so caught up in re-living the failures and frustrations of our past that we never really expect anything different to happen in the future. We’re basically killing our dreams before we even start by failing to understand one basic law of human nature: You will NEVER perform beyond the expectations you have of yourself. This is a fundamental law of human psychology, whether we like it or understand it or not. You will never outperform your beliefs about yourself. Hence, you must create your future from your future, not your past! And you must BELIEVE you can succeed in those future plans, otherwise you’re dead in the water before you start. One of the biggest things that keeps us from achieving our dreams and goals today is lack of belief in ourselves. Jack Canfield, author of one of my favorite books of all time, The Success Principles, says, “If you are going to be successful in creating the life of your dreams, you have to believe that you are capable of making it happen. Believing in yourself is a CHOICE. It’s an attitude you develop over time.” Stop settling for less than what you want! You can design, author, and create the legacy that you’ll leave for your children & families like a priceless work of art – WOW! Yes, it will be hard work. But working hard for something you believe in isn’t actually any harder than suffering through a life you don’t love. But we must make the conscious choice to enjoy the daily journey as we march toward our destination. As long as we’re constantly willing to learn, grow and make changes where necessary, there is so much to enjoy, take advantage of, and feel grateful for along the journey that it truly does become a joy ride!
Do you realize that it’s the simple power of choice that determines our happiness versus misery? It’s the power of choice that determines excellence over mediocrity. It’s the power of choice that determines living as a champion instead of getting lost in the shuffle. It’s really the power to choose that sets us apart from every other animal on the planet! Every other animal acts only by instinct. But, God gave us intellect…he gave us the gift of choices. So, how do we start exactly? How do we choose the path of purpose, passion, and joy? Well, we must first decide where we want to go, and then make a choice to purposefully invest time, effort, and energy into developing some areas of life that will actually take us to those dreams: training to develop the needed skills, emotional management to develop staying power, and finally, a tracking system to develop an accurate picture of where we are in relation to where we want to go! Join me next week as we start digging deeper into each of these three areas. 🙂