How to go after your dreams at any stage in life
“I’m too old for that” ranks with “I don’t have money for it” as a Great Block Lie we use to prevent further exploration. “I’m too old” is something we tell ourselves to save ourselves from the emotional cost of the ego deflation involved in being a beginner. – Julia Cameron
Have you ever told yourself you CAN’T do something because you are either “too old” to start or “too poor” to do so?
I know I have.
We are limiting ourselves, stopping ourselves from accomplishing our dreams–before even giving it a shot.
Mastin Kipp says that the quality and happiness of our lives is directly related “to the amount of uncertainty we can comfortably live with.”
And when we are faced with circumstances that seem challenging. That force us to start over. To have a new beginning. To spend a lot of money or take a financial risk. More often than not, we talk ourselves out of them. We listen to the nagging voice in our head that says “you can’t do it.” Because we don’t want to risk stepping out of our comfort zone. We don’t want to experience the pitfalls and stumbles that come with trying something new. Because they are uncomfortable. And so we avoid our dreams, we avoid new experiences, we avoid the fullness of our lives.
I’m here to tell you today that it is okay to be a beginner. It is okay to not know how to do something or not know what is going to happen.
Guess what? Even the most accomplished piano virtuoso does not know exactly how his rendition of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sinata will go on any night. The baker cannot produce truly identical loaves of bread. The elite marathon runner may get a cramp on mile 24. Things can never go exactly as planned.
Which is why you can only plan to begin. And plan to do the best you can do, given the circumstances.
I have told myself before that I couldn’t pursue yoga because of fear of paying the bills. Not to mention the fact that others have been doing it for years! (Tiffany Cruikshank started teaching when she was a teenager!) I was scared to start my own business, to even write this blog post, because it meant admitting that I don’t know exactly what I’m doing and I don’t know how it will all unfold.
And that, my friends, is the beauty of life. I don’t know what my future will bring. None of us do. But it is an incredible amazing journey that I am excited to embrace. And I am stepping into my beginner shoes. It doesn’t matter how long I’ve done something (or not done something), all that matters is that attitude and energy I am willing to put in and enjoy.
Children don’t NOT learn to walk because they fear falling down. When they fall down….They get back up again. Sometimes with tears. Sometimes with smiles. And eventually they learn to walk, to run, to skip, to prance, to dance! The possibilities are endless. But it begins with a can-do attitude. It begins with letting go the ego and a perfection mindset. It begins with embracing the possibilities and knowing that, one way or another, things will work out.
It begins by saying YES I can make this happen! And knowing it’s okay not to have the slightest idea what to do from there.
It begins by diving into the unknown.
It begins by being comfortable with the uncomfortable.
What do you want to do today? Where have you let the ego or fear get in the way of pursuing your dreams? How can you let go and take a giant leap into the realm of uncertainty?
You can start with a crawl. And maybe, someday, it will feel even better than walking. Maybe…you will learn to fly!