Going after what you want is actually easy if you chose for it to be. We often make it much harder for ourselves than it needs to be because we’re scared. The short answer is to just do it; whatever you imagine your best life to be, just go after it. The reality is that often when we do, we hit all kinds of snags and barricades from our minds and experiences. Most of what we learn as children comes from watching and copying other people, so here is the long version of how to go after you want.
1. Decide what you want
For some of us this will be really easy and for some of us, this will be pretty hard because in order to know what you want, you have to know who you are and be in touch with your deepest wants and dreams. If you are getting stuck on this part, I suggest going to part 2 and then coming back.
If you know what you want, write it down as if you have already done it, and put it somewhere where you can read it every morning and night. Let it become an all-consuming, burning urge inside you, an energy that attracts your desires towards you. When I decided to rebrand a couple years ago, I didn’t have a plan yet but I started talking about it and before I knew it I had attracted a site designer who was able to build me a custom new site. Just remember that you cannot will what you want on to other people, so if your deepest dream is that Donald Glover leaves his wife to come find you, let’s try again and focus on ourselves.
2. Believe that you are worthy of everything that you desire and more
None of us are perfect. We all have pasts and have made mistakes, but at the end of the day, we are our own worst critic. Do not settle for anything less than magical. If your dream of all dreams is to live in a small town on a quiet farm surrounded by friends and family and nature, live it and let your best life shine! If your dream is to travel the world and living with friends and being a nomad while you write books about birds, do it! If your dream is to help people live their best life and let their inner light shine, do it! We all have a purpose and a place that makes us happy and helps us feel fulfilled.
3. Ignore the naysayers
Most of us have HUGE dreams that we keep hidden away because somewhere along the lines someone told us it was too much, too big, too crazy to accomplish. You have to remember that the only real failure is never trying. Maybe it is too much or too big, but we will never know until we try. I remember the first time I saw Beyonce many moons ago on the Ladies First tour. Tamia opened up, followed by Missy Eliot, Alicia Keys, and finally Beyonce. Everyone gave amazing performances but even then Beyonce’s vision was different. She came in on a chaise carried by oiled-down men that walked her down to the stage. She gave us a SHOW with dancers and costume changes. All of these ladies are incredible artists who all have an album or few I can sing by heart (I’ve ALWAYS loved me some Missy Eliot) but even then, Beyonce was just different. Be Yonce and see beyond what others tell you is achievable.
4 . Find 3-5 people that are doing what you want to be doing as your evidence that it is possible
There is ALWAYS someone doing more. While Beyonce is an incredible, trendsetting, hard-working, lady boss, she is here in the footsteps of Prince and Michael Jackson and Diana Ross and other greats who helped pave the road before her. Study them and learn from both what they did right and also what they did wrong to save yourself some missteps.
5. Ask for help!
We all have friends, colleagues, classmates, and family that want to see us succeed. (If you do not have those relationships then flip this step and go start offering help to others and see what shakes out). Often when we are getting ready to do something or make a move we do so in secret. It is very important to protect your ideas and not go spreading them around too soon. Just remember that we never truly do anything by ourselves, and as you break your dreams into bite sizes pieces and put it back together ask for help from those you trust. Let them help you build it up strong and work out the kinks. Sometimes “best friend” is code for “beta tester.”
6. Stand in the light (but don’t get blinded)
This step is a tough one for some of us, because sometimes with big dreams come big titles and responsibilities. Sometimes those titles can feel a little constraining or uncomfortable. I am very comfortable being the student, but it took me some time to step into teacher. I was teaching before I was calling myself a teacher because of the things I was telling myself about what that title meant. Just remember that whether you are student or teacher, the learning never stops no matter which role or which side you are on. Being an expert is great but since knowledge is often living and fluid, we have to learn to not be rigid in our expertise. So always keep learning, keep growing and keep exploring your passions because they can change too.
Life is too short not to be ridiculously happy and live the life you want. If you are not living your best life or loving the life you lead, you have the power to change it.