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I remember sitting in my cubicle typing daunting e-mails, answering dozens of phone calls, and barely staying awake through pointless meetings thinking, “is this all there is to life?” I used to think I was the only one that looked around at fellow corporate drones feeling out of place until I started talking to others about my aspirations.

Most of my coworkers spilled their innermost desires to me once I opened up to them and none of their dreams involved a cubicle either. That was when I decided to make a change, quit my job, and pursue my freelance writing life.

In the journey to live my dream life, I have learned quickly that a lot of the initial advice I had received in the beginning of my endeavor was total crap. So, I wanted to take time and share with you the crap advice so you can wholeheartedly go for your goals and avoid these mental traps that can stunt your advancement.

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Photo courtesy of Zalmen Pollak

The BIG Secret

In recent years the popularity of Rhonda Byrne’s book and movie The Secret has introduced the law of attraction to millions of people. It is a powerful tool to align yourself with your goals and learn how to be open and receive whatever it is that you want out of life.

The negative? It has created droves of people that assume all you have to do is think about what you want every day and it will magically appear in life. As nice as that would be, it just isn’t realistic.

The missing step between creating a vision for your life and living the life in your vision is action. You cannot assume that because you’re putting out into the universe what you want loads of cash are going to drop from the ceiling.

Focus on exactly what you want, create your vision board, and then find a plan of action to implement and watch the real magic unfold.

Photo courtesy of Freddie Marriage

Photo courtesy of Freddie Marriage

You MUST Have a Burning Passion

Some of us have known exactly what we want out of life since we were children. Others struggle most of their lives to find something that excites them. The latter shouldn’t be excluded from chasing dreams or pursuing their aspirations just because they aren’t clear what path they want to take.

I like to share my college story because I think it highlights wonderfully what taking action can do for you. When I first started school I wanted to study theatre and become an actor. Time after time I would audition for plays and student films only to be rejected over and over again. I was defeated.

So, the next semester I decided to take an elective course in screenwriting since I didn’t get into the acting class I wanted to take. Writing was something I had never even thought about doing or really knew anything about. After completing that first writing course I knew immediately that I wanted to be a writer and shifted my major to reflect that and now it is my full-time career.

Had I not tried acting as my first choice I would never have discovered my love of writing and storytelling. Even if you aren’t sure exactly what you want to do, take action anyway to help you craft exactly what success looks in your life.

Photo courtesy of JJ Ying

Photo courtesy of JJ Ying

Success is Immediate If It’s Your Real Passion

So, you have decided what you want, created an action plan, and started working towards your goal. Now, success?

In a world of instant gratification and a wealth of knowledge at anyone’s fingertips we often times feel like success should also be quick and easy. It doesn’t help that sometimes successful artists, celebrities, and entrepreneurs seemingly emerge overnight. What we often don’t hear about are years of sacrifice, the many failures, and simple daily habits that lead the successful to high achievement.

Starting on a new journey is a lot like gardening. You plant your seeds or business intentions, and water it every day with action and intention. Weeks, months or even a year may go by and you don’t see anything sprout above ground. What don’t you see? Below the soil, the seedling is growing, getting stronger, and just about to sprout and bloom.

Too many times people give up on their dream just before they start seeing tangible successes. Keep going and be patient and soon your garden will be bountiful.

Photo courtesy of Redd Angelo

Photo courtesy of Redd Angelo

You Will Be Happy Every Day

This is the biggest lie I heard about working towards a big goal or dream. Giving up a steady income to pursue any entrepreneurial or business endeavor is a physical and mental roller coaster.

You have to learn to fall in love with the mundane work day in and day out. You have to try things and watch them fail to know what works and what doesn’t. Often times, you have to work twice as hard as you worked clocking in and out of a 9-5.

 

Photo courtesy of Diego PH

Photo courtesy of Diego PH

Just know that you will want to give up. A lot. There will be lulls in your business. It will seem impossible to get over a certain plateau. Is it worth it? Absolutely. Once you get past the learning curve and find the groove in whatever business you are working the rewards outweigh the growing pains.

The truth is there is no exact science to becoming successful. Everyone’s journey is different and their vision of what success really means will differ. It is important to not let these overused sayings cloud your mind or determination. You are in charge of your destiny and whether or not you strive for those desires that pop up in your heart, soul, and mind.

Feature photo courtesy of Rich Lock.