Dear DreamChaser: Better Late Than Never
Whether you show up late to your life party or you have had a plan all along -- the point is to begin your journey. There is something so fulfilling about starting fresh. Example, pay attention to how I started this post; I naturally jumped in and began sharing. Believe me-- I have had to start and stop my plans so many times in life, that I began to feel like it was routine, much like wearing your favorite holey socks. And most of those times it was not by choice. "Better late than never" is damn near one of the best cliches out there. However, it is one of the good ones we often hear and more often than not, is true. Whether it was my haters, backstabbers, people taking credit for my ideas and work or simply circumstance, being forced to start over has been a repeated test of resilience and fortitude. Moreover, it is a broad reminding practice to continue lighting my path and grinding with a purpose. ( I will write a post about "Purpose Grinding" soon!) And so, with dreams and goals, we cannot set the expectation that things will fall into place without action.
In essence, dreams and goals are meant for you and not meant to impress upon the next person how important you are going to be or nor how big you talk. Being a dream-chaser often comes at a cost, but at the end of the day hardship and failure is meant to be instructive and can lead you to some unforgettable gifts and lessons.
Photo: Damari McBride
Alright, now that I've got that intro out and we are all marinated and ready to read on, let's get personal. When I was a kid, I believed and had every intention of becoming a lawyer and professional dancer. And from that statement, you have already gathered that I was and still am an overachiever. I also knew that having dreams were a luxury and are not meant to be trifled with or shown to everyone. Now some would say that by going after your goals, you are choosing hardship. I on the other hand assume you're choosing the life you want; the difficulty is merely an attribute that shows up in varying degrees in each scenario. In other words, by going after your dreams, you are not choosing to necessarily go broke, lose your house, be turned down for jobs you are qualified for or expected to accept less. And yes, most of those things I mentioned, I experienced. But I am a #dreamchaser, thru and thru--the kind that never backs down because the moment I do, I've already failed. So back to when I was a kid. My mother (thank God for her) gave my siblings and me the kind of guidance that seems impossible to hear. In other words, she had dreams for us, and we wanted to live up to her hopes and our potential. She was so intent on making sure we knew we could make our dreams come true and she was very much a crusader of letting us know that you could have more than one vision. More stories and lessons from my little mommy in future posts. And so I took her words literally, and I had a plan-- a stable, concrete, indestructible plan. Well. So I thought.
As a reminder, while in pursuit--you've got to be ready to dig deep into the bows of your spirit(soul), your mind and your heart. I can tell you, going that deep into self as a #dreamchaser is both fulfilling and scary. That plan I mentioned didn't actually unfold, the way I would have hoped. And looking back on it all, I do not regret one moment. If you are a #dreamchaser and you are at odds with yourself right at this moment, I can promise you that you should not give in or give-up. I also realize that every path is different and some circumstances seem so dire that there is no way in hell things will work out...And then one day, things turn around. It has taken 25 years of hard work, determination, perseverance, fortitude, faith, hope, family and friends to get to this moment of sharing this summarized story. But what I will tell you is that if you are a dreamer, please never give that part of yourself up. If you are a dreamer, it is only a matter of time, before you start to see your efforts and energy match the results, which not to be confused with changes that continue to occur.
Speaking of change--that is a different thing and it ultimately happens in your mind, which then informs your dreamchasing path. So many changes both initiated and caused by the world around us, are meant to be utilized as vessels of movement. Had I stayed on the west coast for example, my dreams would have been a bit further away--which is why I moved to the east coast. ( I am currently writing a post about this very life-changing sequence of events!) And so I urge all of you to write your dreams down, put a plan together and then follow thru with actionable steps. IF you don't have the budget or even a strong support system, seek out your tribe of #dreamchasers, even if you have to use Instagram and follow folks making it happen. Check out meet up groups, join Facebook groups that suit your interest and network. Remember, when people speak the #dreamchaser language, you immediately recognize you're in the right place. Seek out your dreams, follow your heart and don't forget that it is better to get a late start than to have never started at all.