“If I had known all that I would accomplish when I was first inspired to begin my journey, I likely would have been afraid to start.”
– Peggy Kelsey
Professional photographer, Author, Speaker, Instructional designer, and Creator of the Afghan Women’s Project
How we view the world often depends too much on how other people want us to see it.
For example, after 9/11, the media portrayed Afghan women as sad victims of their society. I learned from personal experience that their reality is far more complex. In 2002, I met a group of Afghan women who came to Texas. I was captivated by their determination to contribute to the well-being of their fellow women, as well as their dedication to the transformation of their country into a place where all human rights are respected.
This experience inspired me to travel to Afghanistan to learn more about these women, who were not all that different from you or me. Visiting their homes, and places of work and study, gave me the opportunity to gaze into their world. This would allow me to bring back a more complete and nuanced understanding of the issues they face, as well as of the diversity, within their culture. I didn’t have the first clue about how I would go about accomplishing this yet I decided that the journey was one I was going to take regardless of how challenging it might be.
Dreams Need Not Remain Dreams
Most of us have dreams deep inside of us, ideas that remain hidden because we have convinced ourselves that we don’t have time; or that taking action is impractical or unfeasible. We may also feel skepticism and insecurity that has led us to believe we do not have what it takes to make our dreams a reality.
While we continue with our busy lives. Doubting ourselves makes it comfortable and easy to view our dreams as just that, dreams.
That is unfortunate.
When we work to bring these dreams to life, whether we succeed or end up with something entirely different, we add to our life experience, self-understanding, and resources.
Yearning for a Clearer Vision
Many may have well-defined dreams sitting on the back burner, others have a vague dream that has not taken form and emerged from the deepest depths of their heart.
My initial vision was vague at best. It was soft around the edges, and it was scary butexciting, and satisfying to think that it was possible. Eventually, I had to take that elusive vision and bring it into the world. I had to learn to make things happen despite the cynics and potential failure. I also had to face my own fears, insecurities, self-limiting beliefs, mistakes and dislike of rejection. Most important, I had to wave my comfort zone goodbye.
There was a decision to make. I could allow my dream to remain hidden, where it and I were both safe, or I could take a risk and make it happen. I’m glad I took the risk.
I know now that a decision to remain safe and secure would have been a decision to do nothing. My vision would have withered on the ground like a seed with no root. I would have been dissatisfied, disappointed in myself, and left wondering “what if…” for the rest of my life.
How to live your dreams
- Reflect: think about the things that excite you and bring you pleasure. Then think about what you need to do and what you can offer the world. Then talk with trusted friends and family members. Remember to remain open to whatever ideas come up – even if you don’t think they are viable.
- Visualize: once you have your ‘dream seed’, it needs to be firmly planted in your mind. Spend time envisioning the details including whom or what your dream would serve.
- Divide & Conquer: Break down your dream into phases. Divide each phase into areas of accomplishment; then those should be further broken down into steps with individual tasks.
- Manage Yourself: Manage your dream by managing yourself. Ask yourself, “What small thing can I do today to move my dream forward?”
- Get Help: meet with others who can help and guide you. Take advantage of all the information, resources, and support you need to realize your dreams.
Transform Your World courses can help you get focused and take back your life so that you can follow your dreams.
The world needs your contribution!
“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”
– Harriet Tubman
Former slave, Abolitionist, Humanitarian, and Union spy during the American Civil War.