I met a lovely client today whose dream is to sell cakes. She's worked in a bakery for years, creates her own recipes and can decorate cakes better than Martha Stewart. She said baking is the way she relaxes; it makes her feel happy to see her creations put a smile on someone's face. This came up in our reading because I saw her opening her own business.
"Oh no, I don't think I could do that."
When I asked, "Why not?" She explained to me about her love of baking and her extensive training but said, "I could never do that. I'm too afraid."
I'm too afraid.
How many of you have said no to your dream because you, too, are afraid?
It is scary to pursue our dreams and risky too. Often we won't get support from our family and loved ones. We might be walking away from a good job, nice benefits, secure retirement plans.
When I decided to start doing readings, I was terrified. I had a great job teaching English in a small and supportive college environment. I had great benefits, a good group of friends around me, I was well liked and respected by my students. The hours were great too. Monday to Friday 8 -2. But I had a bigger dream, something that involved more than teaching students how to write research papers and marinate in Shakespeare's amazing words. I wanted to connect people with their deceased loved ones; I wanted to prove to people that life does continue on, that God is real, there is an after life, and a reason and a purpose to everything that happens in our life.
I started out slowly. Just one Saturday a month. Then I moved to Fridays and Saturdays. After a year of that, I switched to part-time teaching and began doing readings three times a week. It was invigorating and scary. People peppered me with questions dripping in doubt.
"What if it doesn't work out? Can you get your job back?"
"Will you get social security if you work for yourself?"
"How will you get benefits?"
These were all good and valid questions, and I think I handled them well. I still teach one class every semester so I can keep up-to-date on teaching trends so that if I needed to, I could get my job back. Yes, I will get social security because I pay taxes on my readings. Luckily, I get benefits from my husband's job, and I sock away a percentage of my income every month into a Roth and 401K so that I can retire one day if I want to. But here's the great thing about following your dreams: I don't think I ever will want to retire because I love what I do so much.
So while it is scary to pursue our dreams, it can be done properly with careful planning and preparation. And the alternative -- not following your dream -- is much, much worse than your fear. It's like a slow death to work every day in an environment that doesn't ignite your passion.
I haven a wonderful friend who decided to follow her dream shortly after giving birth to her daughter Ella. She creates the most amazing baby blankets, burp cloths, soft blocks and more. Can you imagine creating a business while nursing a newborn? Somehow, she's done it and she's getting more and more successful with each passing year. Just last month, she got to travel to New York City to meet buyers. Let me tell you, she is on her way.
If she can do it, and I can do it, well, I just know you can too.
I read a great article years ago that I share with my classes each semester. It's called, "Fifty Things to Do Before You Die." It's about creating your bucket list and actually following it. I love the last line of the article: "If you want your ship to come in, build a dock!"
Start building your dock and soon your ship will come in. And if you can release fear and hop on that ship, you'll travel to some amazing places.
Check out my friend's website if you're in need of some beautiful baby accessories: