I thought long and hard before talking about ‘dreams’ in this post as I think that it can create misconceptions (in others). And it can sound cheesy.
But then I decided that I didn’t really care.
Because following your dreams isn’t some fluffy fantasy about unicorns and rainbows, as the naysayers would have you believe. It’s really about living the life you choose.
Our own dreams have been in the planning for the past 10 years. And whilst I’ve deliberately avoided verbalising some of our plans for the future, generally people have been very positive and supportive of it. Some people have asked if I worry about not succeeding in our online business and having to get ‘another job’. I’ve written before about the reasons why I quit my job, my fears around this and how I overcame them, and the steps I took to pursue this dream. Because there have been fears, of course there have. But if I continued to think that way, I’d never get where I want to be. I’ve just learnt to trust the process and our journey.
And it is a very personal journey because our ‘dreams’ are personal. As is experience. And the fears, challenges and steps you need to take will be different to ours. So just take from this post what resonates with you and build a plan to reach your own dreams. Just keep moving forward to achieve them, no matter what other people say.
These days, I don’t pay any attention to the naysayers, but there was a time not so long ago when I would have allowed their comments to derail me.
So here are 18 helpful hacks to ignore the naysayers and live the life you choose:
#1. Forget Perfectionism. And don’t be afraid to make mistakes. You can’t expect to fulfill your dreams if you don’t try. You will make mistakes, wins and losses, but by going through those you have a greater chance of success.
#2. It’s A Marathon, Not A Sprint. You’re planning for how you want to live the rest of your life, so what’s the rush? Nobody else knows what you’re capable of or what you believe.
#3. Care Less About What Other People Think. Or even better, not at all. Don’t shelve your dreams and just do what other people do or don’t want you to do.
#4. Take Risks. Risks are part of life and risks bring new opportunities. Dreams make you take risks but they’re also chances and bring bring more opportunities.
#5. You Will Fail – Learn From It. Even if your dreams fail, you’ll feel proud you gave it your all to accomplish them. Dreamers fail now and then, but they also learn more in life. You learn from failure. So, pick yourself up and try it again.
“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default”. [J.K. Rowling]
#6. Don’t Be A People Pleaser. Because ultimately you’ll end up pleasing nobody. I always wanted to please everybody and in the end I was the one sacrificing myself so everyone else was happy. I’m still in recovery.
#7. Ignore The Naysayers. Negativity usually comes out in people when they’re too scared to follow their own dreams and admire your courage for doing so. Never surrender your hopes and dreams to the fateful limitations others have placed on their own lives.
#8. Don’t Confuse Negativity And Constructive Criticism. Whilst a different opinion can help provide perspective, you must know when to separate constructive criticism from negativity. Don’t let other people’s negativity stop you from following your dreams.
#9. Nobody Else Should Set The Bar For Your Life. If you let others define it for you, you will live a mediocre life. They will always set the bar lower for you than if you set it yourself.
#10. Follow A Plan To Fulfill Your Dreams. Doers Are Dreamers, but those who follow their dreams are doers. The dream was the inspiration, but you then plan it all out. Doers have more power to create, influence, and change their environment.
“The vision of your true destiny does not reside within the blinkered outlook of the naysayers and the doom prophets”. [Anthon St. Maarten]
#11. Live With Intention. Sometimes people don’t understand the intentions behind the things you want to do. Whilst your dream is your goal, you must go through many stages to reach that goal. But once you have all the pieces in place, you can start your journey.
#12. Never Underestimate What You Can Achieve In A Year. Do it slowly (task by task, day by day), so it doesn’t feel as daunting and you feel like some progress in happening. Eventually you will see how much you’ve accomplished without feeling too overwhelmed.
#13. Get Out Of Your Own Way. Challenges will help you grow as they make you step out of your comfort zone.
#14. Should’ve, Would’ve, Can Do! 20 or 30 years from now you will regret the things you didn’t do more than those more. The naysayers you listened to back them don’t have to live with the feelings of regret and how you let yourself down – you do. And they’ll have plenty of their own, believe me.
“Of all the words of mice and men, the saddest are, “It might have been”.” [
#15. Inspire Others. The happier I am, the better I can help other people. You will inspire others to follow their dreams, even if they know nothing about you.
#16. Finish One Thing Before You Move On To The Next. Reverse engineer – what steps do you need to take/who do you need help from/need to speak to/engage with
#17. Surround Yourself With Positive People. There will inevitably be times when self-doubt arises. But those are the times when it’s best to surround yourself with positive people and be in a positive environment. See the Dilts pyramid below.
“Do something so grand with your life that you can speak out loud to the naysayers, not with arrogance, but with self-respect”. [Abhijit Naskar]
#18. Don’t Fear Being Afraid. Being afraid makes you feel more alive, so smash through that brick wall of fear. Yes, fear is powerful in bringing negativity and preventing people from taking risks of doing the things they really want.
Need some more inspiration? Check out these 15 best quotes I’ve read about success and failure.
Lastly, I really want to recommend some of the books I read before we started on our journey that genuinely inspired me to push forward and still do.
|The Art of Non-Conformity by Chris Guillebeau|
|The 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss|
|Things I Learned From Falling by Claire Nelson|
|Take Risks by Joe Russo|