On Monday I asked the question, “what is stopping your dream?“. Most of the responses fell under three categories: finances, using time wisely, and self-doubts.
Improve your financial situation.
Get More income. Sell some items around the house by having a yard sale or use an online service such as Craigslist or Ebay. I highly recommend selling online to maximize your revenue, but you really need to know what you are getting into there. Craigslist is absolutely free. Ebay can be a bit more challenging to use and costs about 12% of the final auction price. You could also look into finding a better position or even take on an additional part-time job. If you are in debt, get out of debt!
Less expenses. Sticking to a budget is the best way to cut expenses. Do you actually know what you are spending your money on? Our cable bill was $60 a month, so just by dropping that we saved approximately $700 a year without doing anything else. Any idea how much cash you are spending on Starbucks? For writers, I’m sure the coffee tab could be pretty scary. Tighten your belt and you’ll probably be shocked how much money you can save.
Set aside a portion of that money for something tangible that you can use in your dream. If you are a writer, you could call that your “book publishing/promotion fund”. If you are a musician, stash the cash away for your tour across country or your next album. Attach a picture to this goal to make it motivate you and it will become reality in your mind.
Make the most of your time.
Match the right energy level to the task at hand. You have a much better chance to succeed if you are operating at peak efficiency. (If you don’t know what time that is, trial and error is honestly the only way to figure it out.) Doing a time audit can also help you figure out what you are doing with your time. An online tool like this plugin can help you figure out how you are spending your time online. Use your lunch hour at work. Stay up late or get up early. Listen to podcasts or audiobooks on your daily commute. Remember we ALL have 24 hours in a day.
Get past your self-doubts.
Do the work anyways. A lie is a lie is a lie. Even if there is some truth to a lie, it is still false. Don’t worry about the voices in your head and your fears. Those will go away as you do the work that matters and pursue your dream. We all have the same fears if we really break it down. Those pesky voices in your head never say anything nice and like to use the same material over and over: I’m not smart enough. I’m not creative enough. Everyone will laugh at me. What if I fail? I don’t have enough money. I’ll end up homeless. I don’t have enough time. Each of these is a lie!
You need support. Seriously, you do. Don’t think you can do this with a Lone Ranger-style approach. Even the Lone Ranger had Tonto. And Silver too.
I’d encourage you to get some support, from more than one person. First, I’d recommend you get some support from your spouse or close friend. This is very important. Secondly, you need support from someone else who is in the trenches with you. This is a roller coaster with high-highs and low-lows. The sooner you realize this, the more obvious it is that you NEED support. (I’d be glad to help with any questions you have about support or anything else. Just send me an email email@example.com.)