Is it possible to follow your dreams when you have a slew of responsibilities and people who depend on you, or is it just plain selfish? It depends. In my last post I wrote about how my current position does not seem to fit my personality and I am longing for a change to a more creative career. However, in my situation I cannot simply drop everything and run off to a cabin in the mountains to write. I can, however, take 30 minutes a day to write in a space that I have created that makes me feel inspired. Although it may not be ideal and I would love to take off time to focus on writing, the timing is just not right. One thing I have learned though is that if I don’t take small daily “writing retreats” I will burn out on the rest of my life and start to get resentful of the things I should be thankful for. Here is my advice to myself that I am sharing in hopes that it will inspire and motivate someone else:
1. Create a physical space to do what you love, to work on your goals, to pursue your passions.
2. Carve out 15-30 minutes a day to work on that passion and minimize distractions. Make it known to your family and friends that this is your time to recharge and become whole again.
3. Ignore negativity from yourself and from others. Make your time and space negativity free!
4. Try not to let your passions and goals infiltrate and take over your life. Even thought this is what drives you and makes you feel alive, you must stay focused on what needs to get done and the people you need to care for throughout the day. Keep a notepad for any ideas that pop up, but try to save the bulk of your goal work for your designated time.
5. If possible, designate one day a month to pursuing your passion or goals. If a whole day is not possible, try to set aside at least a couple hours one weekend a month.
6. Don’t lose sight of your goals or you will never progress and will feel stuck in a rut.
7. Read books about others who have succeeded in achieving their goals or followed their passions against the odds.
8. Write down concrete and achievable goals, such as writing a chapter a week, or completing an important research topic within a month. Whatever the goal, write it down and display it in your designated space.
I will be implementing these goals to help me achieve balance in my life while still maintaining my responsibilities. Hopefully this will allow me to be grateful for what I have while pursuing my dreams. If you have any tips for pursuing goals or passions against the odds, please share. I’d love to hear them! Thanks for reading!