• Agora

The Pursuit: How to Follow Your Dreams.

by Kate Wood

You stand in front of the expansive window, watching the sun go down on another day in the city. Horns honk below as drivers’ futile attempts to part the dense traffic are rendered useless. You lean forward to view the street ten stories below you. You fall--

We all know these dreams. Seemingly normal until something off the wall or terrifying occurs to rip you out of that peaceful state of unconsciousness.

Welcome to the “real world”.

Fortunately, we live during times where almost anyone who has a dream or desire to do something is able to give it their best effort, but with these freedoms comes the burden of actually making that dream a reality.

Here are five tips for following your dreams in “real life”.

Forget the money.

If you want to follow your dreams, you can’t let anyone or anything hold you back. If it is truly something you are passionate about, you won’t. The number one thing you have to put out of your mind is money. Of course, you must maintain a sense of financial responsibility. If you are the lone provider for your family, this will still be a necessity. However, don’t let money be the reason you don’t pursue your dreams.

Currently, I am a middle school English teacher. I love it, and it pays the bills, but it is not my passion. It’s not my dream. My dream is to write and to be able to make a living through my writing. I’ve set a series of financial goals for myself to meet to hopefully make a smooth transition. These financial goals stem from Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. You can learn more about that here.

Announce it to the world. (And let them hold you accountable.)

Your dreams mean a lot. To you and anyone who cares about you. Share these dreams with someone. Don’t let your dreams live only in your mind. Live out your dreams in real life. Otherwise, how will they be made a reality?

When you tell someone you have a dream or a goal - here’s the best part: you can ask them to check in on you and your progress. Accountability is the key to living out those dreams. It also helps to ensure that your mental health is taken care of and you receive encouragement along the way!

Embrace Change

Making your dreams is going to require change. It’s going to be hard, and most likely things are not going to be perfectly planned out. That’s okay. They don’t have to be. If you’re following your dreams and pursuing what you’re passionate about, everything will fall into place. Embrace the beauty in the pursuit.

Expect the best, but prepare for the worst.

Dreams mean success - or failure. For some (myself included), that’s terrifying. To know that you could put everything you have into the pursuit of this dream only to fall short. It’s important to have a plan in place for when those failures - big and small - happen.

Establish a support system of people who can encourage you or provide guidance to you in the lowest moments of this pursuit.

Have a backup plan if following your dreams doesn’t work the first time. But guess what? If you’re still breathing - there’s still another chance to get it right. So, try again.

Be the example.

There are not enough dreamers in our world. Dreams spend too much time in people’s heads unspoken and unpursued. Young people go through their upbringing seeing adults stuck in their ways, unhappy, and not being willing to take that leap into something that they can find passion in. Be the exception to that. Be the example to a young person (or even someone who is stuck in their ways and can’t seem to take the leap to find their passion). Pursue your dreams with everything you have because even then, even if you fail, someone will be encouraged to pursue their own and they may achieve their goals, and won’t that be worth it?

Taking that leap isn’t easy. It’s not a task easily undertaken. It’s something I, myself, am still working towards. The pursuit may take months or years, but if you give it all you got, you could inspire a whole new generation of dreamers, and with that, anything is possible.

Follow @kate.wood.writes on Instagram for more.