Life Will Distract Us If We Allow It To
I remember that day as it if it were yesterday. I was sitting in a biology class studying to apply to dental school. I had chosen to become a dentist because it seemed like a profession where I could make a good income. My decision didn’t have anything to do with what career I thought I would enjoy. As I was sitting in class that day, it hit me. I realized I wasn’t pursuing a course I wanted to be on. I loved being an entrepreneur when I was young and that desire hadn’t left me. The next day I talked with the business school to find out what I needed to do to change my degree. I remember how difficult it was staying focused on studying biology over the next few months knowing I wasn’t going to be a dentist after all.
I immediately began reading as many entrepreneurial, business, and personal finance books as I could get my hands on. I became obsessed with learning – something I still feel to this day. This was a passion I never felt during my prior studies. I was truly excited about this change.
Are you Distracted by Seemingly Productive Things?
I still had a few years of college left, so I hunkered down and kept going. During this time, I even decided on the name of the business I wanted to start and secured the domain name. I still spent as much time as possible learning, but with work and school, that time was hard to come by. My dream of starting a business was being put on the back-burner, again. Unfortunately, this would not be the last time this would happen. During my last semester of school, I started in the mortgage industry as a loan officer. Shortly after that my wife and I were married we started a family. Between the good income I was making as a loan officer and feeling like I needed to save money as our family began; I was distracted again from starting a business.
As time went by I became more and more comfortable with the course I was pursuing. The only problem, I was discontent be
cause I knew I wasn’t living my dream. I couldn’t shake this feeling no matter what excuses I used to justify my reasoning. I found the trap even harder to escape because I was progressing in my profession and making a great income. I don’t regret the time spent because of what I was able to accomplish, but I can’t help wonder, where I would be today, had I started on my desired course much earlier.
It really hit me one day when I heard the owner of the bank I work for say: If you don’t pursue your dreams, someone will pay you to pursue theirs. He wasn’t saying it directly to me but it hit me just the same. It was that day I decided it was time to stop pursuing someone else’s dream.
There Will Never be a “Perfect” Time to Get Started!
There will never be a perfect time to start doing what you were sent here to do. Life will give you plenty of excuses to help you justify why you shouldn’t get started – most of these excuses will seem reasonable. I wish I would have started earlier; however, all of my experiences have prepared me for where I am today. I am convinced we all have a drive for something more. It may not be starting a business, but there is something deep inside us that wants to do our version of something great. Half of the battle is recognizing the excuses we have allowed ourselves to believe and live with.
Sometimes all that is needed is one step towards that goal to start something great. If it seems daunting and out of reach, start with something simple to help get you started. Be willing to explore what you really want to be doing and be honest if you are allowing other “worthy” pursuits to be a distraction. Start taking small steps towards your passion to gain momentum – that is exactly what this blog is for me. There is no better time than today to get started because that feeling of regret will only intensify as time passes.
Make Your Bed
I recently read a book that talked about the power of making your bed when you first get up in the morning. I was skeptical when I first read the title as it seemed it a little simplistic. The logic used by the writer was that no matter how small the victory – like making your bed – it is still a victory. The idea is that if you can master something small you can use that gained discipline to do something bigger. There is power in accomplishment. If you are feeling like your dream is too hard, I would encourage you to start with something small, even if that is as simple as making your bed. You can gain momentum through accomplishment, and when you see those small victories you gain confidence for your bigger goals. Find out what that first step is that has been holding you back and get started on it today. You will look back on that stumbling block one day and realize it wasn’t that difficult.
Whether it is the busyness of life that has become a distraction, or the lack of confidence; isolating whatever it is that is holding you back is an important first step. Either excuse we have allowed ourselves to believe will prevent us from our dreams. Get started today and the excuses will slowly fade away. You will then feel the power that comes when accomplishing even the small feats, and as you do so, you will gain the confidence needed for your larger goals and dreams.
Don’t abandon the dreams you had when you were young, get started today!