When I began chasing my dreams I thought that the clouds would part, light would shine down on me, and the angels would sing. That all that was wrong in my life would now be right.
Surprisingly I was wrong.
A lot of my dream-chasing journey has been me crying about how unfair life is.
Really, it's been a case of my expectations not matching reality.
Maybe you don’t cry to your wife about how hard this dream-chasing journey is. Maybe not reaching a certain readership mark doesn’t bother you. Maybe you're patient and a hustler. But I've struggled with the reality of chasing dreams, and maybe these truths I have learned will help you.
Here are five hard truths about chasing your dreams.
1. Your plan won't work (at least, not the way you thought it would).
We have these grand visions that have zero downside. The reality is that your dream won’t look like what you have in your mind. It will be better in some ways, but there will be some downsides you don’t expect. Your plan will be different, and you need to be flexible on some of it. Know what to stick to and what to be malleable on in advance.
2. It will take longer than you think.
We're terrible judges of time. We underestimate how long a plan will take to carry out, or we forget that life will slap you in the face and you'll need to take a break on your journey. We would love to have it all right now, but that’s not how dream chasing works. It's small wins over time. Dream chasing requires focus and patience. Without them, you'll be frustrated and ready to give up.
3. Persistence is everything.
You're going to fall down a lot on this journey. There are moments when you'll think it's your time, then nothing happens. There will be a time when you're moving backward instead of forward. People will say no to your work a lot. Family and friends won’t support it. Rejection is part of the process; pick yourself back up and try again.
4. There's no such thing as perfect timing.
You may be looking for the perfect time to start or jump, but it doesn’t exist. You may be thinking, When my kids are a little older or, When I have a little more money in the bank. The reality is that it will never be perfect. There comes a point when you need to jump. Build the dream in the margins of your life set savings goals but eventually a leap will need to happen. There's never going to be a point where fear is not part of the equation. Jump anyway!
5. You'll never get there.
You'll never reach your dreams. If you do, you'll wind up with a new dream. The journey of dream chasing is the journey of life. You'll always be shooting at a new target, always aiming higher, always adjusting, always stretching and growing. Your dreams won’t end until your life ends.
Instead of chasing your dream as if it's off in the future, why don’t you start living it today? Falling in love with the process will make the valleys less painful and the peaks more fun. The process is the key to enjoyment and fulfillment. Patience, persistence and focus will give you momentum. Take it one step at a time on your journey.