This is a syndicated post originally written on the Success Story platform
This is the evolution of a dream:
1. A dream is implanted in the brain of a dreamer
2. The dreamer becomes thrilled with the dream
3. The dreamer then becomes terrified of the dream
4.Then one of two things happen:
a. The terrified dreamer is scared into inaction, the fear becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy and the dream is considered unrealistic.
- or -
b. The terrified dreamer leans into the fear and takes action on the dream; the terror is found to be hollow and the dream becomes reality.
The point is that any dream worth pursuing is going to be both thrilling and scary. What if you fail? What if you succeed? What if the end result isn’t what you envisioned? What if it’s exactly as you envisioned?
The funny thing is that the answer to each of those four questions can interchangeably be thrilling or scary.
1. Reality control
Any time you seek to change your life, act on a dream and take control of your reality, there will be an inherent level of fear of the unknown. What you can’t do, however, is let that fear control you. It’s going to be there regardless of how confident you are in your dreams, and you need to use it as motivation rather than discouragement.
Because for better or for worse, true clarity comes from action.
It’s been said that you don’t know what you don’t know, and as circular as that might sound, it’s completely true. The size of your dream or the loftiness of your goal doesn’t matter, you never know what the results will be until you step out into the unknown and take action on your vision.
2. Fear the Unknown
Inaction comes from fear of that unknown. As you sit at the desk of your comfortable job, or perhaps as you carry out the daily routine you’re used to, embracing that unknown seems like an impossibility. But if you’re reading this, then you know deep down that there’s more out there. You have a calling that is more meaningful than a comfortable job or an easy routine.
As you sit and contemplate the potential scenarios of your decision to pursue your dream, you’ll think about everything under the sun, both realistic and completely absurd. And since it’s human nature to avoid pain, your thoughts will naturally skew toward all the things that can go wrong.
But will those things go wrong? Can you say with clarity that pursuing your dreams will be a fool’s errand?
You can’t. No clarity comes from sitting on the sidelines.
The only way you’re going to know if your dreams are worth pursuing – if the juice is worth the squeeze – is if you actively pursue them.Only through trial, error and experiences will you know.
3. Quantifying Fear
It may be beneficial to actually quantify your fear. If your dream is to be an entrepreneur, what’s the worst that can happen if you leave your job in pursuit of your endeavor? Momentarily reduced income, a small gap in your resume and society potentially telling you that you’re a failure.
Now, what’s the best that can happen?
When you look at your dreams that way, the risk involved with taking a chance isn’t really that risky. So what if you fail? At least you tried; you expanded your knowledge of yourself and the world around you, better equipping yourself for the future.
The fear may be real. It may be the wrong decision to pursue your dreams, but it may not. For one second, stop thinking about the things that can go wrong, and instead think about the things that can go right.
When you start thinking that way, acting on your dreams isn’t only smart, it’s a necessity.