It’s an exceptionally insightful and profound assessment.
Our harmful and helpful experiences, especially those from childhood, reliably dictate how we interpret and interact with the world.
What we accomplish in our lives is a manifestation of deep thoughts arising from those early impressions and expectations.
Most people are merely vessels for minds which are heavy with long-held limitations and fears.
We live the kind of lives that, as the late American writer Henry David Thoreau says, interfere with life itself. We make a living, yet we do not live.
But examining one’s life is the beginning of becoming free. One can carefully dissect the facts and events that shape perspective on how the world works and one’s place in it.
For instance a child compelled to listen to abusive words about the unlikelihood of achieving success may fulfil that limiting prophecy. Imprisonment by imposed limitations will only stop when the concepts are confronted and conquered.
There is a Rwandan proverb which says ‘if there is no enemy within, the enemy without can do us no harm’.
If one declines this crucial challenge or is unaware of the steps necessary to achieve personal freedom, aspirations are unlikely to be met. The person will become as small as the controlling desire – to paraphrase a sentence from James Allen’s pithy classic, As a Man Thinketh. To achieve anything beyond one’s mental or emotional boundaries one must first shatter those boundaries.
This step is more difficult for those who have been discouraged by others – especially close relatives – from infancy, and those who’ve faced dismal socio-cultural circumstances. These steps may help free you.
Acknowledge your passions: This is the most critical step since it is the beginning of change and attainment. If you have no ambition then there is nothing for you to free yourself to attain. The ambitious person, Marcus Garvey wrote, is great in mind and soul. Ambition is the lifeblood of our revolving universe. To be ambitious is to step out of your zone of comfort, toward the residence of lofty dreams and ideals.
Acknowledge your fears: Stepping out allows you to become vulnerable to your fears, which is an indispensable outcome of one’s movement toward growth and maturation. Accept your fears for what they are. What are the experiences from your childhood or recent past that are robbing you of self-confidence? What denies your right to dream? Be honest with yourself.
Confront your fears: Go against the grain of what you were told you cannot do. Everything you need, businessman Dr. Farrah Gray likes to say, is on the other side of fear. Begin with ‘I can’ affirmations: “I can achieve my dreams; I have a right to dream”. Repeat these words with the regularity with which you breathe. You may need external assistance such as counselling. Do whatever you need to get help to triumph over your fears.
Master your craft: Once you master your mind, you can go on to master your craft or talent. If you dream of becoming a painter, paint; a writer, write; a student, study; a speaker, speak. Read widely in your area, in fact read everything worthy of reading. Go to workshops and lectures and listen to those who have succeeded in your field.
Pursue your passions: Be courageous and tenacious. Take the steps en route to your bliss. Heed these words of Henry David Thoreau: “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined”.
This is why you are here on earth!
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