The poster I have of James Dean on my wall.
“I am not on this earth by chance. I am here for a purpose and that purpose is to grow into a mountain, not to shrink to a grain of sand.” Og Mandino
Everything I’m doing has a purpose to it. Even the small stuff. The 20 minutes of TV that turns into 2 hours. Whether I help someone, or continue on with my day. Whether I put that extra hour of work in, or if I choose not too. Our excuse is always “in the grand scheme of things, an hour isn’t going to make a difference.”
Even if you don’t believe that statement, it’s a lot more beneficial to believe that it’s true than not to. If you know that every choice you make will have an effect on your life, your success, your happiness or lack-there-of. You’re going to make better choices. You’re going to make choices that inspire you and push you to become greater.
Every decision that we make has an effect. I did an article a while ago called Bold Choices Take You Where You Are Supposed to Be. Mandino’s quote just reminded me of a similar thing. I’m not here to shrink, to be small, to be impactless, and neither are you. We’re here to do big things.
The funny thing is that we have no idea which choices are going to have the biggest impact on our lives. All we can do is take action on the opportunities that are presented to us, and work hard.
Even in the gym and with your training, you have no idea which will be your breakthrough day. But it will definitely come if you’re consistently working hard and remaining dedicated.
“Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die today.” James Dean
I love to dream. I probably spent the majority of my time in high school and college dreaming. These days, after reading a good book, I’m actually excited to go to bed so I can start dreaming. I love dreaming about the ‘what if’s’. What if I can do this, or what if I can do that. But I’ve realized that the things I’m dreaming about are all accomplishable. And that makes life pretty exciting.
What’s the point of dreaming if you’re not dreaming big?
There isn’t really one. It’s just ‘thinking’ if you’re dreaming of things that take no real effort or imagination.
Then there’s the “live as if you’ll die today” part. They completely contradict each other. Dreaming is about letting the mind wander and go wherever the hell is aspires to go. While being in the moment and enjoying the present is about the exact opposite; it’s about being able to focus on the present, and not letting your mind wander.
Living as if you’ll die today is about seizing the opportunities that come your way, and being open to them. Treating them as if they’ll never be presented to you again.
I’ve really worked on being in the moment, and I’ve seen immediate changes in my life, and most importantly – or most dramatically – in the quality of my work. I’ll get what used to be 5 hours of work done in 2.
Mr. Dean’s quote is as much about paying absolutely no attention to limitations as it is about anything else. So next time you set a goal, set one that is limitless.
“For anything worth having one must pay the price; and the price is always work, patience, love, self-sacrifice – no paper currency, no promises to pay, but the gold of real service.” John Burroughs
Achieving something that you have worked, struggled and dedicated your life to is infinitely more enjoyed than something you are given.
I speak from personal experience a lot. It’s what I know best, and it’s what I feel people can relate to most. And I’m speaking from personal experience right now, having started my own business a couple years ago. Having put in 12, 14, 15 hour days 6 days a week doing something that I love. Something that I believe in, but also something that holds a certain amount of uncertainty.
I’m not at the top of the mountain yet – I’m not even close – but I’m making my way up it one step at a time. And one feeling I’ll never forget, and always cherish is the uncertainty. The ‘knowing’ what I’m doing is good and ‘worth it’ and will pay off, but not knowing for sure. The people that stay by me, push me to become better, and then those that question what the hell I’m doing and leave.
It’s hard to not really know you can do something until you’ve done it. So I understand it when people don’t fully believe in themselves. But trust me, you can accomplish what you want more than anything. The world is full of testimonials that prove me right.
The nervousness, the uncertainty and the questioning yourself that we all do until we achieve what we’ve set out to achieve is a beautiful thing. I almost think that the stress and the self-doubt, the journey to the top of that mountain is better than achieving the goal or reaching the pinnacle.
We learn more about ourselves through pain, struggle, and sorrow than we do when things are going well. Will we remain true to who we are, or will we sell out? Will we help people, or will we take advantage of people?
All of that pain and all of those struggles make that final destination that much better. And that’s how you know that it’s worth it; by what you’re willing to sacrifice, how hard you’re willing to work, and what you’re willing to do to make that dream come true.
What’s your favorite motivational quote?
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