Lately, I have wondered what I have to write about. It seems that I am not getting devotional-type, based-off-of-a-verse inspirations. However, this is where I am in my life right now, so we are going to have ‘life and success blogs.’ In the past, I have found that what I am struggling with, my readers can identify with, so I hope it’s a blessing to you. As most of you know, I left a standard job back in May to pursue dreams that I simply couldn’t follow as a full-time teacher. It was amazing to take that leap of faith… HOWEVER… it hasn’t been as easy as I thought it would be! I realized I had a lot to learn about being disciplined and focused with my time and energy. So, here are 5 habits I am learning to incorporate into my daily life to make sure that our dreams are going to come true.
1) Stick To A Sleeping Schedule
I know, when you are pursuing dreams, sleep is one of the first habits to go, so that is why I am listing first here. Look at college students – half the battle to graduate with your dream degree is dealing with sleep issues. No, you don’t need to give up your sleep, you need to schedule it better. Getting the proper amount of sleep can make a huge difference in your ambition and clear thinking (and even emotions, trust me on this one, I know it first hand!). It is said that if you want to get the most use of your day, you need to be an early riser.Think about this – how often do we try to make our dreams happen at night instead of in the morning, because we don’t want to adjust our sleeping schedule? I am not an early riser, but that is because I don’t want to go to bed early. But if you are sleeping inconsistently or varying hours, your body is constantly under stress as it tries to figure out the pattern you want it to function in. No proof of it, but I actually feel that consistency could be just as important as the amount of sleep you get. Consistency gives your body a pattern to expect. It allows your brain to know when to shut down and when to be focused, hence making your waking hours more efficient.
2) Turn Off The Distractions
Whenever I decide ‘to get serious’ about making my dreams come true, I have to turn off the TV. My poor husband thinks I am mad at him most of the time for it, but if I spend 2 hours watching TV, I could have made phone calls for my business or almost completed a blog post. To me, these time sucking activities keep us from the destinies God has promised us. No, I am not saying time sucking activities are evil, but I bet God can show you where you are losing the time He gave you to invest in your destiny. Seriously, if you are saying you don’t have time, but you live on the same planet as all of us, you have just the same amount of time as we do. So, if what you are doing is holding you back from your future, then you need to change something. For me, personally, this step is the BEST to get me focused again, so try it. Turn off your distractions for a week and see what you can get done with that extra time.
3) Invest In Moments
We say we don’t have time or energy, but that is our excuse. I think the reason we use that excuse is because we are intimidated by how big our dreams. We feel that it takes ‘too much time,’ and so we avoid starting or finishing our dreams. Dreams aren’t so hard. It’s just a one moment choice, then the next moment. Here’s an example – when i was teaching, I struggled with how much time and energy it would take to get ready to teach. As you can imagine, teaching can suck in all the time and still be left with nothing for the unit. So I decided I would take 15 mins after work every day to set up the next day. I would plan out the week, create PowerPoints and worksheets and even grade, but I made my work doable by daily investing in moments. Seriously, just keeping moments instead of hours made a huge difference to my stress and kept me on track to where I was trying to go. I didn’t get overwhelmed and I didn’t lose focus, because I had such a short amount of time.I use this idea in almost everything in my life. Chores, writing, running my business, taking care of pets or even cooking 40 loaves of banana bread. I get more done when I only give myself 15 minutes to do it. Try it!
4) Learn To Say No
This one is hard for me, I want to stop everything and give people my full attention whenever they ask for it. But I have had to learn that not everything and everyone is my priority. It’s okay to say “I can’t” or to give people a schedule for when you are available. With my writing, I know it takes 5-6 hours for each blog or article I write, plus I have to run my business and work another job. You would think people would understand that you are making dreams come true, but sometimes they don’t. I remember when I was in college, I tried to limit my social life to 1 night a week, and that was usually a Bible study. But if I had an all day event (like a family get together), I would bring my backpack and did my studying while I ‘socialized,’ I knew that was the sacrifice I had to make to get my degree, but now? Now that I am following different dreams, I find it very hard to do this. In the last few days, I realized that I allow situations and people to determine if I am doing my writing or running my business. In other words, I am not saying no. I know how effective it is to stay focused no matter what, so I guess it’s time for me to start setting my priorities for myself.
5) It’s Not Just A Hobby
Regardless of what your dreams are or what you are working toward, you have to get the mindset that it is not ‘just a hobby.’ All of these habits are ways of showing that you are engaged in more than just a hobby or a time passer or a way to relax. Your dreams are important to you and they are part of your destiny. To treat them as any less is an insult to what God has put inside you. For instance – I call crocheting a hobby, I do it when I need to relax or when it’s wintertime and we need scarves. I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that crocheting is not the ministry or destiny that God intends for me to have. But writing? Running my business? That’s not just a hobby, that is the real deal. Now, think about this – how will your family and friends treat your dreams? That’s right, they will treat them exactly as you expect them to treat them. If you say it’s a hobby, well then it isn’t so important and can wait. But if it is your destiny, then it is important and can’t wait. Shift your mindset, build these habits into your life and you will see your destiny and dreams start to come true!
Share this blog with your friends and comment below how these habits are helping you achieve your dreams!