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  • Linda McLean

Dreams and Schemes - The Magic of Doing What We Love

More than half my lifetime ago I told myself I needed to stop wasting time daydreaming about becoming a songwriter and be one. It was time to make my vision real. I remember the conversation I had with myself - I looked at my fear and turned it into a dragon and got up and danced with it. I said, "Thank you fear. I'm grateful for what you've done for me, but it's time for me to move on without you."

First I had to admit to myself that I was terrified of failing at what I really wanted to do. I had no confidence in my ability to succeed. I'd tried to bury my dreams and walk away from them.

It's not really possible to bury our dreams.

Thankfully my dreams refused to stay buried. They followed me everywhere. Every now and then they'd poke up out of the ground and trip me and laugh at me when I fell. They made sure I understood that hard as we try, it's not possible to actually bury our dreams.

I believe that we all have a dream, a personal ambition that we know is our primary purpose for being alive. I also believe that our dream is scary because failure at succeeding in what we really want to do is too painful a thought to face. It's a paradox, the one that's often referred to as being stuck between a rock and a hard place.

So what are we to do?

Face our fear and do what we want anyways. Make friends with our fear. Invite it over for tea and listen to its problems. Tell our fear we understand and sympathize, and then put it in its place. Declare to our fear that it is no longer in control of our life.

Say goodbye to fear and hello to building confidence.

Confidence is 98% of ability, maybe 100." Having confidence means we are open to making mistakes, we're able to move on and learn from those mistakes, we're willing to experience our humanity and suffer humiliation or gain or whatever result our accomplishment offers. l We own our accomplishment. We've earned our confidence.

When I realized I had to face my dream and become a songwriter, it was before I had any confidence. Confidence seemed the furthest thing from what I would ever feel. But it was my only choice, the thing I knew I wanted more than anything, more than good health or a car. If I was going to be a songwriter I'd have to get good at it. So I practiced, worked on my skills. and kept my aim true.

Confidence is a result of endlessly doing what you love to do.

What I discovered is that confidence is a result of exactly what they say, ten thousand hours of working on one thing. ten thousand hours is a lot. Especially when you're a mom who likes to cook fresh meals for your kids. It's a lot of long nights after the kids are in bed, it's a lot of stolen hours when they're at school. It's a lot of saying no to friends when they ask you to go shopping. It's a lot. But if it's truly your dream, it's like nothing at all. Reason, you love spending your time doing it. Time disappears when you're doing it. You revel in the practice. You live to show up and work on your skills.

If you're not sure what your dream is, answer this question; what would you like to spend 10000 hours doing?

That is the question you need to answer for yourself; what do you want to spend all your time on in order to gain confidence? Name one thing.

If you're still not sure, here's a fun exercise that takes much less than an hour of daydreaming and will help you figure out what your dream is:

  1. Make a list of your greatest accomplishments over the past 10 years (don't overthink, write down whatever pops into your head.)

  2. Take a look at your list of accomplishments and put a checkmark beside all the ones that make you feel happy.

  3. From 1 to 10, where 1 is 'No Effort' and 10 is 'Every Effort', rate the effort you put into each accomplishment.

  4. From 1 to 10 where 1 is 'Zero Confidence and 10 is 'Super Confidence'. Rate your level of confidence in each of these accomplishments. ( Your rating is your choice. Uou can't be wrong!

The trick is, face your dream and work hard doing what you love.

It's not a trick. You've found what you love to do. Maybe you're like me, you needed to give up on being afraid and allow yourself to do what you want. Or maybe you're not stuck and just needed a hand hold. Either way, sending you best wishes for happy doing.



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