So many of us want to make a difference and so few of us believe that we can. But as human beings we were designed to dream, to create, to imagine, to express ourselves to share ideas, to progress. We don’t try because we don’t believe we can and we fear failure, we fear looking foolish, we fear the brutal consequences we imagine must lie in wait for the brave and adventurous. There are those who inspire us, those who teach us, those whom we can aspire to follow. And we can follow, we can be as brave and adventurous as anyone we know or have heard of. First we must shatter the myth that these brave and adventurous people know no fear. The fact is that those who ‘dare to do’ fear all of the same things that you do. The difference is that they don’t allow these fears to prevent them from pursuing their dreams and they fear other things more.
They fear dying without ever having truly lived, they fear being left with too many what ifs, they fear finding themselves at the end of their lives with a list of ‘dreams to do’ that have all been left undone. They choose to live “yes I can” not “no I couldn’t”. They choose to live LARGE.”
All too often, the only thing that stands in our way and prevents us from living the life we want is ourselves. It’s what we do (or don’t do), and it’s about what we think. In fact, it is what we think that helps us sabotage our success or happiness, because thoughts always precede actions. I know all of this. I know how our beliefs limit our lives, meaning that we hold on to what no longer serves us, or we simply fail to live out loud, shine and be the blessing we are meant to be.
I really DO know this! And yet today a good friend shared this poem, and I loved it so much I’ve copied it to the blank front page of my journal. I knew I had left it blank for a reason.
And do you know why I loved it? Because I actually sat at the end of it and went, “wow!” This is how I want to define my life! Yet what I’ve actually been doing is exactly the opposite. In my head and heart, I have been defining it by my failures, my roadblocks and my disappointments. I have been focussing on where I went wrong with love instead of what went right – or IS right. I’ve mainly kept looking at my own pain, and the pain I caused others, and at what went wrong in my past when life was “mainly normal” instead of seeing that all of this IS normal. And it’s all amazing grace, and love and adventure.
May these words also make you see life in a different way. Be free.
I do not define myself by how many roadblocks have appeared in my path;
I define myself by the courage I’ve found to forge new roads.
I do not define myself by how many disappointments I’ve faced;
I define myself by the forgiveness and the faith I have found to begin again.
I do not define myself by how long a relationship lasted;
I define myself by how much I have loved, and been willing to love again.
I do not define myself by how many times I have been knocked down;
I define myself by how many times I have struggled to my feet.
I do not define myself by the number of mistakes I have made;
I define myself by the knowledge I have learned from trying a new way.
I am not my pain.
I am not my past.
I am that which has emerged from the fire.