I look through my Facebook News feed, and it seems that a solid 60-70% of my friends list is starting a business, or blogging, or starting photography, or is a musician, or something creative. I also know that most of these people work a full-time job on top of what their pursuing. It’s encouraging, challenging, and honestly, somewhat intimidating sometimes. I see a lot of people cranking out super high-quality content, and in my own writing, I go between thoughts of “I can keep up with this” and “I really hope I can put out as good of stuff as what I’m seeing”.
Occasionally, I’ll scroll through Pinterest and find some quote to grab inspiration from for writing, and I happened to see one today that I found quite poignant. It went like this: “If you don’t go after it, you’ll never have it.”.
Wow. Just wow.
That’s heavy stuff. At least, it is for me. Allow me to break that down for a second. All of us have a dream. We all have that dream job, dream car, dream house, dream life, dream whatever-it-is. That’s all fine and good, but here’s the thing. If you don’t knuckle up and start making moves towards that dream, you will never get it. What a sobering thought.
Becoming a full-time writer is a dream of mine. I would love to wake up every morning, grab a cup of coffee, go into my office for an hour to write, and then clock out to go play with my son and spend time with my wife for the rest of the day. That sounds amazing. But if I don’t keep pressing forward to it every day I sit down at the keyboard to write, it’s just a hobby.
Let me tell you a quick story. When I was just five years old, a legendary movie came out. A movie that won hearts and minds the world over. A story of heroes. A story that made us laugh. It was the movie that planted a dream firm in my heart. The movie was Space Jam. Go ahead, laugh it up. No, seriously, you can laugh. It’s hilarious.
Space Jam made me want to be a basketball player. My parents went out and bought me a basketball hoop. I played HORSE until I couldn’t play anymore. I joined the local basketball league (sort of like a county wide intramural league for kids). It was all fun and games, until someone told me I’d never make it into North Carolina, or play for the Bulls. But that’s a story for another day.
My point is this: If I had actually kept going, I may have had a shot. I turned out to be 6’4” tall, and I could have learned how to play, and play well, had I kept going. I mean, I was 5. I would have had nearly 15 years practice before college ball and pros was even a thing. I mean, let’s also be real, I was not meant for the NBA. Not even remotely. Ask Josh—I am not athletically inclined in the least bit. But it’s certainly interesting how quickly the dream died after I stopped working towards it.
That quote from earlier had another part to it. “If you don’t step forward, you will always be in the same place.”
That’s what I’d like to wrap up on today. Another dream I had for a LONG time was to be a writer. I’ve wanted to be a writer since the 7th grade. I can remember where I was when that dream entered my heart. For so long, I just let that dream sit there. I didn’t tell anyone about it, for fear of the dream being crushed. Then, I finally told someone. Thankfully, it was the right person, because they got behind it. They gave me the courage to make steps towards it.
And since I did, things have been happening with it. My writing career has been taking off very quickly, and I can’t wait to see where it goes. So, I’ll leave you with this. Don’t be afraid to chase your dreams. Get something in front of you, make steps, and chase it down until you’ve grabbed a hold of it and are living in your dream.