The beginning of the year is an exciting time; new hopes and dreams planned and realized. We often start with a New Year’s Resolution but our sparkler goal fizzles out once the second week of January rolls around. Instead of a New Year’s resolution, think big; what is your dream for this year? You have to start further back and look at your life goals and work forward from there. To be thinner, richer, smarter are not goals I am talking about here. What makes you feel alive, what do you long for, how do you want to serve others, what qualities do you want to be know for, how do you want to leave your mark on the world? As you think of the answers to some of those, start writing out some words to realize, create and accomplish your dream goal this year.
For me, I desire to create, to encourage and to share the giver of my gifts with others so that they in turn can find their God designed purpose. Therefore, my goal has to come out of that larger life purpose. I have been on a creative journey; blogging, designing and creating. In order to realize my Big Dream for this year I welcomed encouraging listeners, sought out creative sojourners whom I strongly admire and endured rough and thorny paths (disappointment and rejection being the key figures of woe in this land).
As I encourage you, I am also allowing myself to be encouraged, challenged and held accountable. We have all tried to do this on our own but just as we need a village to survive in life, we need a group of supportive individuals to obtain our goals too.
WAIT, Before you read further, grab your FREE DREAM BIG 2019 GOAL SETTING GUIDE in the FREE PRINTABLES Section to accompany this post.
- What is YOUR BIG DREAM this year?
I hope I have you thinking Big already. You wouldn’t be here reading this if you didn’t have a desire to live life to the fullest and achieve your God given potential. Don’t hold back, put it out there and write it down. Say it out loud; to yourself and others! This makes the dream more of a reality.
What ideas have you had but have been too afraid to dream about them? I had a dream to paint for years but I kept holding back. I would make the excuse that I didn’t have time (truth: I didn’t make time. We make time for what is important). Then there was the excuse that I didn’t know what supplies to use (truth: I didn’t research or ask). I didn’t know what to paint (truth: I had so many ideas I couldn’t pick one). The truth is, we are our own worst enemy and the only one holding us back.
Where does one start? You have an idea but what do you do with it? How does one get from point A to point B? Now, some of you are going to be more organized, decisive and methodical about this process. That’s great, you have a head start. But for those of you who lack those skills but have the desire ready to radiate out of your pores, I am here for you. I stand with you in the second group.
Eventually you will break down this dream into small and measurable chunks (weekly, monthly etc.) but for now do a bit of a brain dump.
Take a piece of paper and start writing all the thoughts, goals and hopes you have for this year. Don’t hold back and just let the pen take over. Write down everything that you want to do (that comes to mind) that is part of reaching that dream. (ex. Buying or enrolling in a course, researching a topic, joining a FB group)
- What Are Your Fears? Challenge the Fear
Write out some of your fears; what comes to mind automatically when you think of accomplishing this dream? Some of the ones that I automatically think of are; what if it doesn’t happen, what if I am not good enough, what if I can’t meet up with the design demand, what if I do accomplish this dream, then what?
What is standing in the way of that fear? Maybe you are worried about your lack of skill in a certain area. Are you concerned about a time factor? Is there a lack of money to accomplish a task?
Use these fears to be your guide. Looks at those fears and tell yourself what you need to do to challenge them. If you have a lack of skill in a certain area, then enrolling in a course might be what you need to hone your skill. This task can be added to the “brainstorming” category above.
Sometimes we need to follow the fear train of thought through to the end. Start by asking yourself what would happen if your worst fear came true. What if the dream didn’t happen this year? Well, you would have a really good head start and know more clearly what else you needed to do, right? Every aspect of leaning into that dream couldn’t possible be a waste. So the fear question is already getting you thinking of what you are going to gain along the way.
Money and skill can only hold you back for a time (as we can always find ways to make money and acquire skills through free or paid means), they can’t hold you from achieving your dream. So if it isn’t those factors that are true fears (meaning that they can be worked around within a time frame), the only things left are what you think and what others think. I wrote a more in depth post on negative thinking and using affirmations to counter this in “How to Set Goals to Achieve Successful Outcomes”
This fear challenge is also a great place to start between you and your accountability partner.
- Create Your Village
Remember what I said about needing a village to accomplish a goal? Well, this next person will be the first to join your village and support your goal. Think about someone you admire, trust and spend time with that you could ask to partner with you on this journey. It could be someone that is trying to accomplish a similar goal. Make sure that the other person has similar drive to accomplish a goal, and is consistent. Meet with them a minimum of once a month (in person is the best but email or video conferencing works too). Make a point to contact them.
Start following people that carry similar values that you do. “Out of the heart the mouth speaks”. There are so many voices that tell us what to read, who to follow and what courses to buy. When I started my creative journey, I didn’t know who to listen to, what hashtag to follow and I was more worried about numbers than serious engagement.
Once you gain a skill or mindset, it is okay to leave something behind. If it doesn’t feel like a fit anymore, than it probably isn’t. Remember those first life value questions I asked you? What makes you feel alive, what do you long for, how do you want to serve others, what qualities do you want to be know for, how do you want to leave your mark on the world? Do the answers resonate with what someone, a course or a group you follow is offering.
What is it about a certain person, group or course that draws you in? What inspires you? For me it is two fold – the person has a gentle, kind and caring manner about everything they do and create. Then I look to the aesthetic, the colours, photography and presentation. For me there has to be florals, femininity, warmth and beauty. What makes you feel alive, what do you long for, how do you want to serve others, what qualities do you want to be know for, how do you want to leave your mark on the world? Is there something that I aspire to do, be or create that someone I admire is emanating?
I am not saying that you should follow everyone out there that looks like you would like to look. But we are drawn to certain business owners, creators and influencers for certain reasons. We always need to ask ourselves why and what need is it fulfilling? I still am drawn to and have developed a relationship with the original business that I admired and prompted the beginning of my dream of creating art online.
Another way to grow your village is through free Facebook groups. You will soon know whether or not it is a group for you. Are the conversations drawing you in or making you cringe? Do the members have the same goals and drive as you? The great thing about these groups is that everyone is at a different stage of realizing their dream so it is a great place to ask a lot of questions.
There are many places to take free courses. Many Instagram influencers host free webinars that give you a taste for what they are teaching. I took many Skill Share courses for free (the first two months are free) and I learned a ton about watercolour art.
These are just a few ways to start building your village. And remember your village evolves as your needs and skills change.
- Document Your Success & Learn from Setbacks
You will have successes along this journey. Remember that each success needs to be celebrated. We do not get the energy and drive we need to continue forward without celebrating our successes. One of the ways to document success is to write down or check off a task when it is completed adding the date as well. When you accomplish a daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly task, check it off and share your success. Remember that you have multiple social media platforms options to share your successes with. Everyone loves to hear success stories, so get ready to share!
I have designed a monthly calendar that takes on the form of a task list so that you can write down and check off your tasks each day of the month. Check out this FREEBIE, “January Dream Big Task List“ in the Free Printables Section. You will take points from your “brainstorming” session to start adding to your monthly task list.
The further you dive into your DREAM BIG journey the more specific you will need to get with each of these points. After you write a task down, always ask yourself, “does this fit my BIG DREAM GOAL?” We can get sidetracked, but I am here to be your guide and cheerleader.
There will also be setbacks and disappointments along the way. Remember it is up to you on how you choose to focus on those negatives. There is so much learning that happens through mistakes. For me, there was a lot of failed decisions made and disappointments had.
Here is one example from last year. I landed a really big deal with an online wholesale marketplace for my product line and I couldn’t believe it!! They liked my products and determined that their enough of their retailers would love them too. I proceeded to get all my ducks in a row prior to a telephone call to finalize the details. After a few emails prior to the phone call I found out that being a Canadian shop prevented me from proceeding with this wholesale marketplace. I was devastated and heart sick. But after much soul searching and sitting in the negative, I looked at all that I had gained from getting ready for this launch. The door to this marketplace might open in the future but for now I choose to focus on other areas.
The key is to learn from our mistakes and feed what grows. Do more of what works and discards what doesn’t.
Let’s Get Started
Okay friends, start today and watch your enthusiasm and momentum grow. Follow along on Instagram for your daily, weekly and monthly encouragement. We can do this! With our growing plan, our village, accountability, challenging our fears, learning from past mistakes we will accomplish our dream for 2019.
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Blessings from my house to yours,