The following list is from a piece by Alexis Sclamberg entitled, The Real Reason You’re Not Living Your Dream Life (And It’s Not Time or Money). Alexis’ insight applies perfectly to what might be stopping you from living in the grey.
It may be obvious to you that when I ask people who are not living their dream life why they’re not living it, they offer up a slew of excuses. It’s as though a laundry list of reasons roll off their tongues and out the door. Before I can reply, they’ve convinced themselves for the umpteenth time that that dream life is unrealistic, impractical, and totally far-fetched. It’s the life reserved for their imagination — not a reality that they have the power to create. Sound familiar?
We know exactly what Alexis is talking about. We hear these “reasons” (aka excuses) all the time too. As she states, “Excuses are just excuses, though. They’re not truths; they’re only as real as you make them. They’re artificial creations that mask the real fear and doubt lurking underneath your skin.” Alexis has done a great job of listing the top excuses she’s heard and offering ideas on how to bust through each:
Excuse #1: I don’t have the money. Consider how much money you actually need and find creative ways to get it. I’m going to guess that you you haven’t even spent the time figuring out how much money you need to actualize this dream. Don’t compromise down your dream before you even explore it.
Excuse #2: I don’t have time. You can make time for the stuff that matters to you. You get to choose whether or not you prioritize your dreams. What are you doing that’s a total time-waster? Do you spend three hours a day on Facebook or mindless moments in front of the TV? What can you accomplish more efficiently? What can you outsource to someone else? Rearrange your day and think outside the box. You’ll find you have more time than you think.
Excuse #3: I’ve already started down one path; I can’t change direction. Every day you make decisions about how you live your life. Give yourself permission to change direction — no matter how much time, energy, or money you’ve already invested in another endeavor, relationship, or job. Life is all about twists and turns — be open to a new direction.
Excuse #4: I’m too scared. It’s natural to be scared of the activities that most excite you. Use fear to move you forward — follow your fear, don’t resist it. Push yourself so you can be proud of yourself.
Excuse #5: People will judge me if I fail. You’re giving everybody too much power. Frankly, people care a lot less about what you’re doing than you think. You’re just a blip on their radar screen. Make the decisions that are right for you. The people who love and care about you will support you; the rest don’t matter anyway.
Excuse #6: I’m not _____ enough. Not young enough, smart enough, or good enough? These are just limiting beliefs. Catch yourself when these doubts pop up, and find something positive and encouraging to say about yourself instead.
Excuse #7: I’m not ready yet. If you’re waiting to be perfectly ready to pursue your dream, you’ll never go for it. We all start one (shaky) step at a time. Don’t wait for perfection to move forward, just do it.
Did you find any of your “reasons” on the list?
We invite you to try Alexis’ suggestions to combat them. Once you do, we’re sure you’ll have nothing left but inspiration and motivation to go create your dreams!
Alexis is co-founder of Elevate Gen Y, a conference series for Gen Y women, and a personal development writer, speaker, and media personality. A former lawyer, Alexis has been called “the self-help voice of her generation,” and is at work on her first book. Alexis lives in San Francisco.