Most of us will occasionally find ourselves at a crossroads, without the information and clarity needed to press forward. In these times, it is only natural to reach out for guidance.
But when in such a vulnerable state, be careful who you allow power over your dreams.
For several years, I spoke solely on generational differences. When I decided to expand my topic, I had a hard time articulating my new message, content and value. For three years, I drove myself crazy trying to figure out what “it” was.
Finally, I decided to reach out to one of the most successful, inspirational speakers I know for some guidance.
She agreed to chat with me, and on our call, I shared a bit about where I was.
Rather than sharing ideas, focus or perhaps a touch of inspiration, she said, “I’m not sure if you need a speaker coach or a therapist.”
Gotta love honesty!
I had hoped to walk away from our conversation with a greater sense of clarity and confidence.
Instead, I began to wonder if my dream was even possible.
I wasted a couple of days wallowing in self-doubt, then decided that these are my dreams, and I have within me everything I need to give them life.
I just needed a new path to clarity.
I began listening to a CD by Jack Canfield, in which he provided some visualization and affirmations exercises. I started with three. Now, every day, I:
- Inspiration. I Listen to a CD or read something that inspires me.
- Self-affirmation. I Look at myself in the mirror, say my name out loud, and appreciate myself in three areas: what I did that day, what temptation I overcame and what habit I kept. (Yes, it’s weird, and no, I don’t let anyone else hear me, but I see the benefits.)
- Visualization. Though it can be hard to slow my A.D.D.-riddled brain, meditating for 10 to 15 minutes every morning on my vision has proven valuable. If I can’t seem to focus on my vision, I mentally list all the people, experiences and things for which I’m grateful.
These simple steps have helped tremendously in increasing my confidence, which has provided a great foundation for clarity.
Five days later, as I was sharing some ideas with a friend about the topic that most interests me – the interplay of inspiration and performance – I began to find the words that had eluded me.
Though I couldn’t yet fully articulate my message, our conversation provided me with some direction and sparked an even greater sense of excitement in my work.
Now that I’m moving forward again, new opportunities are springing up.
Rather than feeling like I need therapy, I’m overflowing with excitement and enthusiasm for my new direction.
Remember, you have the power to make your dreams come true, but you must protect them until they can stand on their own.
No matter how qualified or intelligent people may seem, if their guidance doesn’t leave your feeling empowered or inspired, seek a different opinion.
Keeping it simple,
Misti Burmeister, best-selling author of From Boomers to Bloggers: Success Strategies Across Generations and Hidden Heroes