I believe that of all the skills we can acquire in life, the one that will take us the farthest is dream building. This is a harder practice than many people might imagine.
Many people limit their dreams to things they perceive are possible to achieve. However, if these things are easily achievable, in my mind they are not so much our dreams, but more our imagined goals. To achieve them requires little or no “stretching”.
However, when we allow ourself to dream about what we believe is impossible, we will often discover the big dream that we should strive for. This is my story of learning to dream big.
It took me a long time in life to understand the importance of dreaming big: to understand I am limitless, and of the infinite possibilities for the direction of my life. Now that I do, I wake up every day excited about life, and knowing that anything can happen.
This is only possible because I had the courage to dream big and step outside my comfort zone to realize that dream for me: the dream of entrepreneurship.
In our old life, my husband was locked into a job that didn’t make him happy; but as the main breadwinner supporting our home and two kids, giving up a well-paying job with that a pension and benefits was out of the question.
Both of us had our mindsets stuck in the traditional philosophy that we should go through life working hard, paying our bills, and planning for retirement. Once we finally retired, we could live the life we really wanted. This mindset is not unusual for many people.
But the big question in these times of economic uncertainty and changing corporate structures is: what happens if you don’t make it to retirement? We were about to find out.
With only seven years remaining until my husband would be eligible for early retirement, the company he’d worked for over 20 years suddenly closed its doors. With its demise went the full pension and health benefits. At about the same time, we also suffered the loss of three close family members.
We’d lost so much, but we did not lose our dreams. We saw this as an opportunity to have more control over our lives. Against everyone else’s advice, we explored the very impractical and crazy dream of entrepreneurship.
Despite living in a small community with limited opportunity, I was determined to change our lives. As I moved forward in my determination, the skills I had developed in my previous work experiences were tremendously helpful in developing a business that my husband and I could work at together.
Applying those skills in new ways reminded me what I was capable of, and that gave me the confidence to persevere and achieve the dream. I learned that once you re-invent yourself after a life crisis, you realize how much more is possible, and you aren’t afraid to strike out again.
This explains why we decided in September 2016 to move from our hometown in Ontario, where we had lived for 24 years, to Victoria, B.C., to live and operate our business there. After several trips to Victoria, we discovered we’d fallen in love with the rugged natural beauty of Vancouver Island and wanted to make it our home.
Today, our business schedule is hectic; yet the warmer climate of the west coast provides us with more year-round activity options. Whenever we get an impromptu afternoon off together, we have so much to enjoy here. This gives us both a constant reminder of what’s really important in life, and inspires our creative energy to pursue our next big dream.
Celebrating past achievements is a tribute to all your hard work, and is the quickest way to gain the confidence, motivation and courage you need to go after your next big dream!
So, what are you celebrating?
Guest Author Bio: Shelley Essery
Shelley Essery is an entrepreneur and Certified Law of Attraction Facilitator; she is also the author of “life revived, The Business of Living Life”. Her philosophy that success comes through personal growth is at the centre of her own achievements in business and life.