Wednesday, February 08, 2023

Dream It - Do It

I have been having some quite deep thoughts lately.  I have been thinking about where I am in life and where I want to be.  It's only natural after the year that I've had with it's up and many downs.  There have been moments where those thoughts turn darker, and I wonder why me?    I try to be a good person and do what is right and yet life seems to hand me lots of lemons.  I see other people out there on social media and other places waltzing through life and it seems as if everything goes their way. 

I know, I know, Social media is not always a true representation of everything.  Most people are not exactly forthcoming with the truth and only post the good.  And furthermore, the truth is usually only a half truth.   But it's so very difficult to see someone write about taking up painting one week and talking about their first ever painting.  The very next week I was seeing them post about how they decided to sell their paintings and they are selling like hotcakes.  Really?  That's not how my life goes for me!   I see people talking about writing their first book.  Setting up their own business.  Paying off their house early due to their side hustle.  Your name it it's out there and other people are doing it.  But yet I sit here stagnant.  I'm not making money on a side hustle.  I'm not learning to paint one day and selling it the next.  Well then again, maybe I should attempt to learn painting.  Maybe....  Ok, maybe not.  But it does make me question why things seemingly fall into place for so many while I am left floundering. 

Even as I pondered these other people and their successful ventures and lives, I realized what was different.   They had the ability to dream!    As my thoughts about dreams poured through me I experienced the familiar pangs of self-pity.  I started to think about my life and what I typically do.   When I was younger, I had big dreams.  I wanted to teach school and have a family and change the world.  I grabbed the bull by the horns, and I followed my dream to teach school.  I have written about my experience with teaching.  It left me a royal mess emotionally.  You can read about it here if you are interested.   Teaching turned out to be a failed dream.  Motherhood was also an elusive dream.  My ex-husband knew about that desire and trampled all over it.  I guess it's no small wonder that my marriage to him failed.  (I'm 50 years old now.....too old to try for a baby!  hahaha)     My two biggest and all-encompassing dreams died and withered on the vine. 

For years I was afraid to let myself dream.  I honestly had no dreams of major goals in life.  You see, if I had them, I would just be opening myself up to pain and heartache.  That is what had historically happened, so why would anything else be different.  And the while the fear of failure was and is still looming within me, I can recognize that I need to face the fear of failure and allow myself to dream.  I need to allow myself to set goals.  I need to allow myself to try!   You see, I need to not only dream it.  I need to Do it!

I have tons of projects in my life that I need to finish.  I need to put myself forward and say "I am doing it and I'm going to follow through and do it to completion."  I have had fantastic ideas!  But I've always tamped them down out of fear.   (I still love that idea to create a company to have educators dress up in historical clothing and teach lessons to elementary kids.  Learning from an actual reenactor is so much better than learning from a book!)  Occasionally, something will slip by me, and I'll do something and put myself out there.  But I never push hard to make it a true success!  

I started  youtube channel.  Much like I this blog, the youtube channel is an accountability tool for my weight loss journey.  I have reached about 800 subscribers.  People that joined at the same time as me have 4-5 thousand subscribers.  (You can reach monitization at 1000 subscribers).   I'm not saying that those people are making a ton of money, but it would be nice to make something for my little side hobby.   (I'll keep doing that and this blog because it is good for ME regardless of money).  

I wrote a book.   I have it published on   I am quite proud of the fact that I did that.  I put myself out there on a very small scale.  I sold a few copies here and there.  But I never pushed it or promoted it.  So, it really was just a dream that I started but I never really DID!  But what about all those things that I have thought about and never done.  Those things that are a glimmer of a dream, but I've been too afraid to finish. 

20 years ago, I wrote a children's book.  I did it as a joke but an elementary school teacher that I knew read it and begged me to publish it.  Yet the book sits in a folder in my file cabinet gathering dust.   When I was at the pinnacle of my first weight loss attempt and basking in the glory of my weight loss transformation, I started to write a book on losing weight.  Not the particulars about how to lose weight, but more on how to get your mindset right.  I've picked it up and written a bit more here and there.  I just recently glanced at my outline, and I am SO close to being done.  A few times over the last few years I have thought about finishing it.  But it continues to sit in its three-ring binder.   I also started a book that I refer to as my 'diet-ventures'.   It's all those funny and crazy things that have happened to me during this mission to lose weight and be healthy.  Yet, the idea and the writings that I have sit in a file on my computer.    What is wrong with me?   

I'm afraid to Dream It and I'm afraid to DO it!   

Last year though, something changed for me.   I saw something about a miniature competition.  I love my miniatures, and something prompted me to enter the competition.  I worked on and off all year long.  (Mostly off until fall when I realized that I was nearing the deadline).  I actually followed through.  I had a dream that I was going to do something worthy of submission and I followed through and did it.  I didn't back off. I submitted my entry!  I did it!   I am still waiting to see if I won...or even got any honorable mentions.  But that's ok.  I had a blast doing it.  I followed through.  I dreamed it. and I did it!  

It is time to not only dream, but it is also time to actually do!   What does this mean for me?  Well, I'll be continuing to write here.  I like writing here.  This is my accountability and my place to write out my feelings and thoughts.  It's cathartic for me.    But what else does it mean?

1.  The Children's book - It means finding an illustrator.  Or maybe actually trying to illustrate it myself?  (ha).    
2.  The Weight Loss book - Finish those areas that need written (it is probably 90% complete in its writing) and start to reread and fine tune and get it proofread.  Ultimately, get it published.
3.  The Diet-Ventures - Finish writing the ventures.  I am probably 1/2 way through writing it.  Edit/proofread and of course published.
4.  NOT drop the ball on promotion for these books when they do get to the publishing stage. And yes, most likely they will be self-published again which means I have to do more marketing myself. 
5.  That miniature contest that I entered for 2022, well I already have the base and made the commitment to submit an entry in 2023!
6.  Commit to building my YouTube channel.  Give it a serious go to see if I CAN build it and if could be something more than an outlet for my personal accountability.  Man, does that mean have to get brave and post it on my Facebook page and let the world see it also?  I have historically kept not only my YouTube channel private and separate from my friends and family (of course Jason knows....and some other members of my family also know, but as a general rule, not many people in my real life know! Likewise, I didn't make it public knowledge about my book that I published.  Fear of letting others see me fail!)

I think that's enough for now.  In fact, that's not too bad for a gal that has been afraid to dream for ages!  Or maybe I should say been afraid to dream and fail!