- It’s Never Too Late to Start Something
“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it.
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now.”
William Hutchison Mary
I am sitting in a session. In front of me sits a vibrant and outgoing 30 -year-old, her head in her hands, telling me how deeply unhappy she is in her career. The degrees studied for 5 years for and the nearly 8 years in the workforce climbing the ladder to land her where she is. But despite all the effort, it wasn’t all she thought it was be.
Perhaps it was not her dream she was following in the first place or perhaps she just outgrew it. In any event, she is here. Distressed, stuck and confused about where to go next. Trapped between a sensible and well-earning job and the dream she has had since she was a teenager, or before. Hovering indecisively between where she is now and the person she really wants to become. The one calling her forward. She feels as though she has wasted her life and that it’s too late for her.
On the Edge of Change
I see it time and again. People yearning to start something or to start again but scared and teetering on the precipice of staying with something unfulfilling and certain or answering the inner call of stepping into something greater. Perhaps a casualty of society’s constant messaging that life is for the young and if you’re over 30, (certainly 35), then it is too late.
Or perhaps they have the voice of their parents or inner critic (or both) ringing in their ears telling them they have to play it safe, avoid failure or worrying about what other people will say when they start doing something they truly want to do.
If not now, when? If not you, who? (Hillel the Elder)
If you are lucky enough to have your physical health and are in a position to be able to dream and have a chance at creating what you want, you must take it. Many millions of people live in poverty or survival mode and for them, it might be trite to speak of “living your dream”.
If you are healthy and able to work, to create and act then now, more than ever, it is time to listen to that dream and make it happen. I can promise you, that little voice within, inspiring you do go deeper, try something new and take a leap of faith rarely goes away.
I had another client who was a very successful lawyer. Beyond the prestige and six-figure salary, her heart dreamt of working in the health industry. Having spent over 6 years at law school, the idea of studying for a further four years to get her next degree and then having to start all over again at the bottom of the pile was not very appealing. But she didn’t want to be a lawyer and knew in her heart exactly what she did want to be doing.
Time Stops for No Woman
The thing is, time will pass whether you are doing what you love or stuck in the same spot and living with the feeling of “what if” or “if only”. You may as well be taking steps to make your dreams happen – wherever you are at in your life. (This client did start studying part-time and completed her nutrition degree and leap-frogged into an awesome job using her previous skillset and her new skills).
If you’re sitting on a secret dream, what should you do? I really want to encourage you to act. I think that the worst thing to happen is to do sitting on the regret of not having tried, not having explored. Taking action does not mean creating radical upheaval in your life. It means you go within, find the dreams you have for your life small and large and then looking at how you can create more of that in your life.
Find Those Slippery Suckers
The first thing you can do is be honest with yourself and identify your dreams. Often the go underground. We get busy with the busyness of life and they fade into the background. But they never disappear. You might just need to slow down and allow them the space to resurface.
You are unique, and your life is yours and yours alone. You matter and your dreams matter. So, honour your unique journey by listening carefully to your inner voice.
Create a giant brainstorm of all the things you ever wanted to do all the things you want to do and include the bold ones that feel out of your reach, too.
Dreams remain dreams unless you take action, but it might not be realistic to up sticks and move to the seaside to sell seashells or to drop everything and become a pilot.
So, you might need to think broadly and try and find a starting place (who knows where it may lead?) or a way to get the same feeling into your life.
For example, you may have wanted to be a vet, but it might not be practical and realistic to re-train. But you may be able to volunteer for the RSPCA to foster care animals. This might fulfill that same yearning within to care for and nurture wildlife or kittens or whatever your jam is.
Sometimes we need a nudge or a cheerleader on our road to making changes and following our dreams. Those old patterns and voices can overstep the mark and, whilst they are trying to protect us can keep us small and fearful.
Find at least one person who can help you. Hire a coach if necessary. Join a Facebook group or community group of people with a similar goal e.g. writing and publishing a book.
Make sure you are hanging with people who see you and support your vision. Even if you chose to keep that private from friends and family lest they should stomp on your dreams too early.
Lastly, be sure to take inspired action. You cannot fail unless you fail to try Do one thing each day that moves you towards the dream you have. One small step, consistently and in a year, you will be so much closer. Transformed in fact.
If you have patterns of sabotage or distraction or beliefs that don’t help, be sure to examine and clear those. Whatever might be holding you back this could include your failure, the rejection, fear what other people think of you. Those things have to go. It’s time to step forward into the dream that is calling you forward. It is time. Your time.
Justine Peacock - LLB LLM B COM Grad Dip Psych.
Coach & Psychotherapist
If you want to stay in touch, you can find me at www.justinepeacock.com.au and you can also join me at my Facebook group “Consciousness Women’s Collective” where you will find tools and resources as well as information on how to work with me.