30 Oct Secrets To Sticking With A Dream
Secrets To Sticking With A Dream
Hello and welcome to a very special episode of DREAM THINK DO. This is episode 200. That’s right, we’ve hit 200 deep dives and interviews. Pretty crazy to think about.
If this is your first DREAM THINK DO… welcome. I am so honored that you’re here.
And if it’s your 200th… or somewhere in between… THANK YOU! Thank you so much for being a DREAM THINK DO-er. Thanks for being on this journey WITH me. I couldn’t do it without you AND wouldn’t want to do it without you! It makes this episode so much more special knowing that you’re out there and a part of this.
Listen To The Podcast:
- Dream Job Redefined Book: Dream Job Redefined
- BIG Dream Gathering (www.bigdreamgathering.com)
- BIG Dream Gathering FB Page: https://www.facebook.com/bigdreamgathering/
With this episode, I do want to celebrate a little bit, but I also want to pull back the curtain and share some stories, some highs, and lows and some favorite memories.
Plus, I also want to dig into something a little bit bigger. Something that’s important. Something that can help you as YOU go after your dreams and goals too.
First… it’s good to celebrate, and we’re going to celebrate.
With this particular episode, as we celebrate, as we remember, I also want to spend a little time digging into the subject of knowing when and when not to stick with something. Two hundred episodes, it means we stuck with it, but I can tell you, there are times where I really thought about quitting. I’ve been talking with a lot of people lately, and that just seems to be in the air. I’m not sure whether it’s the season, I don’t know what it is. But I’ve talked with people who are thinking about making career changes, whether it’s shifting jobs, whether it’s shifting positions within a company, or changing careers altogether.
I’ve talked with people who were thinking about quitting. Quitting training programs, or quitting their degree, or quitting their advanced degree. I’ve talked with some people who were thinking about quitting a big dream, something they’d been working on for a while, and they’re kind of in the messy middle, I call it. The honeymoon period that comes sometimes when you start a dream is over for them, and it’s the messy middle, the hard part of not quite sure whether it’s going to work out, not quite sure they should keep going, and they’re thinking about quitting.
Here’s the thing. I’ll be the first one to tell you, sometimes it is right to quit, but we’re going to dig into this concept of when you should quit and how you make that decision. If that’s something that you’ve wrestled with, or maybe you’re in the middle of it right now, we’re going to spend some time on that together, because that’s what we do. That’s what we do. We move forward, we make things better. We truly dream bigger, think better, and do more, and we do it together. That’s where we’re going today. Sound good? Good. All right.
All right, let’s do this. So, 200 episodes, it’s amazing. Still kind of boggles my mind. I can tell you my first goal was just 10 episodes, just get 10 episodes done. I liked it. But it was too early to tell whether it was going to be a benefit to people, whether people would appreciate it, enjoy it, use it, engage. But that was my first goal, just 10 episodes. I got those done even before we hit publish – before we went live on iTunes – and I found myself really enjoying the process, almost feeling selfish a little bit that I was enjoying it so much. But I thought, “Well, maybe, maybe we’re on track.”
Then my next goal was 50, just 50 episodes. I told myself that at 50, if I was not enjoying it, if it seemed like it was more work than it was worth, if it didn’t seem like people were really engaging, then I was just going to quietly put it up on a shelf, call it a success for getting 50 done, and just walk away. Then we hit 50. Actually, it’s almost funny. I was getting ready to record 50 and thought, “Oh, my gosh, we’re there.” I kind of lost track of time and was enjoying it so much. So, I just said, “All right, we’re going, we’re doing it.”
It’s still just amazing to me today to get emails from you guys, to hear from you, to get comments and reviews, but I personally just love the emails that I get, the updates, all of that. It’s just such a gift. So, at 50, I said, “Okay. I’m going to 100, then 100, 150, then 150, I said 200. That was my goal. Again, I’ve kind of always given myself that permission that at some point, it was okay to quit, but I wanted to give myself some deadlines, some finish lines, some mile-markers at least. That’s what we’ve done along the way. It’s always kind of come in 50-episode increments.
Along the way, there have just been some awesome memories. I can tell you some of my favorite memories of doing this are doing an interview. One of my favorite experiences of having a podcast is doing an interview, and I get so caught up in the interview, I forget about you. Now I’m sorry, DREAM THINK DO-er, I will never truly forget about you, but there are sometimes when I’m getting so deep into a conversation that I forget that it’s for the podcast. Sometimes, I get so engaged in the conversation that I forget we’re recording, and I just start asking myself questions just for me. But, hey, I figure we’re cut from the same cloth. Right? You and I are so alike that if I’m going there, then that probably means I’m still asking questions for you. It happened to me so many times in the last 50 episodes.
My interview with Karen Brown, I don’t know if you remember that, but we dove into the subject of limiting beliefs. Go check it out, mitchmatthews.com\180. It was episode 180. I got so wrapped up in that conversation, you could hear it. Some of the strategies that she threw out, I’m like, “Now wait. What about this? But what about that? And what about this?” literally. It’s because I was thinking about it for myself. It turned out to be a great episode. It’s one of the ones that we got the most feedback on in this last 50, so go listen to it. I think you’ll enjoy it immensely.
Or Shawn Askinosie, I don’t know if you remember that one, episode 195, just a few episodes ago. Shawn was this successful attorney who kind of fell out of love with his career and decided he was going to do something different and tried a number of different things. I’ve talked to so many people about that, those moments where they quietly, slowly sometimes, fall out of love with what they’re doing. Whether it’s their career, whether it’s a hobby, whether it’s where they’re volunteering, whatever, they fall out of love with it.
Sometimes it’s about recommitting, but sometimes it’s about finding something new, and Shawn’s story is he said he had this very simple prayer, but it was a prayer that changed everything for him. He basically said, “God, just give me something new. What’s something new that I should do?” I just love the simplicity of that prayer. From that, a number of different experiments. Some went down in flames.
But one helped him uncover this new passion, and he became a chocolate maker, a bean-to-bar chocolate maker. Now Shawn travels the globe, does profit-sharing with cocoa growers all around the world. He actually invited me and my family to come down. He lives in Missouri which is very close to me. He invited us to come down for a visit to check it all out. He runs the business with his family, all that stuff, so we’re going to take him up on that offer. So, go check that out. That’s episode 195.
Or there’s the time with Ben Stein. You probably remember the other Ben Stein from Ferris Bueller. Bueller, Bueller, that Ben Stein. Ben Stein, my Ben Stein, is actually our history teacher. Our boys, both our boys had him. One of the best teachers I’ve ever come across. I don’t know if you remember that from episode 173, but we dove into some of the stories from history because Mr. Stein was always fantastic at teaching these stories from history that everybody should know, that most of us don’t, though. We didn’t hear them in our history class.
No matter where you’re at in the world, but especially if you’re in America, to hear some of these stories is just amazing, kind of the story behind the story, behind the story, and it’s true stories grit, and I just love that. So, that’s episode 173, and you can hear where I totally lost myself in that interview. I got so charged up, and people said you could power a mid-size town, a mid-size city from that particular episode. That’s 173. So, go check that out, especially right now. Right now, as I do this episode, as I record this episode, we’re in the height of all this political campaigning and all of that. Go back and listen to that episode, though. It kind of brings you back to how this country got started.
Then there’s episode 184 with my buddy Howard Berger. If you’re a movie buff, if you enjoy sitting down with your family or with your friends to watch some movies, go listen to that. If you remember, Howard Berger is an Academy Award-winning special effects artist. He’s won Academy Awards, Emmy Awards. Just basically every award in that industry, he’s won it. Incredible story. I just love Howard for how transparent he is. He’s been involved with literally hundreds and hundreds of films. Some of the biggest films, some of your favorite films, he’s probably had his hand in it, and he talks about some of the behind-the-scenes. And I totally lost myself in that interview. You’ll hear it.
One of the coolest things as of late that’s happened with the podcast, I want to share this with you. When I started out to talk about when my goal was only 10 episodes or 50 episodes, I had no idea how much I’d enjoy this, but also some of the ripple effects of this. That’s what happens when you go after dreams.
Sometimes it’s the thing that you think is going to come from it, the thing, that goal, the thing that you’ll experience, the thing that you feel like, “Oh, if I can achieve this, if I can get this done, it’s going to feel like this.” But oftentimes when we go after a dream, and if we’re paying attention, it’s the other things, the surprises, the things you had no idea that would come about. Those are the best. Those are the richest aspects of going after dreams.
I bring this up because with Howard, here he is, he’s out in L.A., he travels the globe, he’s on film sets all over, working with some of the biggest names in the industry, all of that, but he said, “Hey, if you’re in L.A., come and see me.” If you’ve been listening to DREAM THINK DO for a while, you know our boys both want to be involved with that industry, one behind the camera, one in front of the camera. We do all sorts of different things to support that dream. They’re going after it like rabid dogs on a bone, which is really cool.
We were out in L.A. this summer as a family, and Howard and I agreed to meet up. I thought maybe we’d just do a quick tour of a studio or something like that, but he one-upped me. He blew it out of the water. He actually got us on Fox’s grounds where they shoot so many Fox films. For an example, we got to see the soundstage where they filmed Die Hard. We got to see the soundstage where they filmed Sound of Music, various parts of Sound of Music. We were in that sound studio, in that studio. It’s just crazy.
He also got us on the set of Fox’s The Orville, Seth MacFarlane’s sci-fi TV show The Orville. We’re fans. We knew Howard was involved in this, so we’ve been watching it. It was just mind-boggling. They were actually filming, so we bumped into Seth MacFarlane in the hallway. If you know Seth, he does Family Guy, just a juggernaut within Hollywood. Then we got to meet cast members. We got to meet so many of Howard’s crew. We got to see their process. They actually put makeup and all this prosthetic kind of stuff on our oldest son to show him how it worked, and it was just mind-blowing. So cool.
They were filming the next season of The Orville, so we couldn’t take pictures of anything because we were on the set. So, I have no proof of it other than just incredible, incredible memories, and again, it’s just one of those things where you just never know. When you go after a dream, some of the added bonuses, some of the added benefits.
I also love the deep dives, because just like the interviews, sometimes when I’m doing the deep dive, just like we’re doing now, it’s as much for me as it is for you. I try to be selfless and selfish, a healthy mix of selfless and selfish. Whenever we’re going after subjects, especially in a deep dive, it’s because I’m needing to go after it, too. So often, we’ll get subjects and people will make suggestions on topics, and I love hearing from you. Email us, firstname.lastname@example.org. Just email me. I love hearing from you.
It’s such a blessing to get to hear from you guys, but I do get suggestions. You’ll write and say, “You know what? I want to go after this subject. I want to dive into this subject. I’m curious about this subject.” It’s the thing I love the most is hearing from you guys, getting your updates, hearing what’s going on from you, whether it’s on social media, whether it’s via email, whether it’s a comment on the blog. I love it, and just getting updates.
Just as an example, episode 191, I don’t know if you remember that one, I interviewed Jake. He’s a student at the University of Kansas. He had come to a BIG Dream Gathering, came up to me afterward, said he wanted to talk, had some questions for me, had a business idea that he wanted to dive into. I asked if we could record it because it’s a subject that I get a lot of questions around. He said, “Absolutely.”
I recorded that months ago, and then we wound up using it over the summer. What’s fun, though, is I just got an update from Jake. Things are rocking for him. He made some major changes in his life, but he applied a number of the things that we talked about. He took them, poured gas on them, and just blew it up, and things are rocking for him. He’s flourishing like crazy. Go listen to episode 191 and just know that Jake is rocking it, and apply some of those strategies yourself. We got a lot of great feedback on that one.
Plus, just hearing from people giving themselves permission to go after stuff. We’ve had people launch businesses, launch nonprofits, write books. Absolutely incredible. Some of my favorite updates are the ones where it’s people just decided to double down and rededicate themselves to their current career. Not making major shifts necessarily, but just saying, “Hey, I’m going to really commit. I’m falling back in love. I’m choosing to fall back in love with my career.” Or some people were just like, “I gave myself permission to go and just take a painting class. Not because I was going to get a job out of it, not because I was going to change everything in my life, but just because I really wanted to experiment with that.”
Those are really the biggest payoffs of this, and I’m so, so grateful. Every time I hear from you guys, I’m so grateful for it, so keep those things coming. Again, just email me at contactus@mitchmatthews.
But let’s change gears here a little bit, because we’ve been celebrating a little bit, we’ve been remembering a little bit, and I’m so grateful for that. Thanks for celebrating with me. But here’s the thing. What do you do sometimes? We can talk about the high points, and some of those things are fantastic, but what do you do amid the low points? How do you stay with it? I know for me, we can talk about it in the area of the podcast, because I want to be real with you and you know that I’m all about being transparent and kind of let you behind the curtain. I always want you to leave these episodes encouraged, inspired, but I also want it to be real. I want it to be real between you and me. There have been, obviously, some incredible high points, just even in this last 50 episodes. So, so grateful, but there have been some low points, too.
What do you do when you experience a low point? What do you do when you get tired? What do you do when you don’t feel like you have the time or maybe that the odds are kind of stacked against you? I don’t know if you’ve ever had those weeks where just all of a sudden, you’re just like, “Man, what the heck? Am I cursed? Everything I touch seems to junk. I don’t have the Midas touch this week. I seem to have this touch of death.”
I can tell you, there have just been some times where we’ve had some challenges. I’ll never forget. One of my first interviews was with Brendon Burchard, and you guys probably remember that. If you don’t, go back and check it out. It’s a fantastic episode, but I can tell you just instantly, it was a high and low because we’re having this awesome conversation, and in the midst of it, he gets really real, very transparent, and talks about a recent experience he had with his former publisher, and it was very fresh, it was very raw. I don’t think he was planning on sharing it. Afterward, he said it was the only interview that he shared that story.
He basically called out this publisher and said they were trying to blackmail him. I wasn’t sure what to do with that. Here I am, this new podcast, just budding audience, all that stuff. I’m wondering if I’ll get sued. If this publishing company is going to now come after me.
Another time, we had a long-time producer, helped us get started and all that, and some personal stuff happened for him. We’ve since been able to sort it out, but in the midst of it, he just stopped communicating.
We had an episode that was due. We generally put the episodes up on Thursday morning, so we had an episode due on Thursday morning, and all of a sudden, nothing. No communication at all, and we were scrambling. A friend of mine, Thank you, David Nadler, David Nadler out there, long-time business partner of mine and friend who stepped in, helped me to figure out the tech, and we got it up on time. We got it published on time.
That episode was kind of put together with duct tape and sweat. Again, thank you, David, for that. Sometimes when you’re going after a dream, you got to scramble a little bit, and that was a week of very little sleep and getting some things turned around, but we were able to cobble some things together, work some things out, and then David actually stepped alongside me and helped to produce a number of episodes until we were really able to get things back on track.
Or there’s also the morning that I woke up and realized that 100 episodes just disappeared from iTunes, just gone. You’ve probably seen if you follow me on social media, that those episodes are back now. Super excited about that, but that was a very dark window because we realized that there were some issues with how the podcast had been set up. I’d hired somebody to help me set it up, and there were some issues with how they set it up. As we were working with Apple and iTunes and all of that, we realized there were some challenges that were really rare but were very real.
For a while, we thought we were going to need to shut down the podcast and start over, that it may have been set up wrong. We were in danger as the podcast grew that we just might lose more episodes. There might be some technical problems, all of that. There was this three-month period where we’re just kind of wrestling with do we shut it down? Do we restart it? Do we reboot it? Do we walk away from it?
Since then we’ve been actually able to figure it out. We’ve been able to work with Apple. My current producer has helped me work through it. Super, super excited about that, super grateful for that, and we’re back better, stronger than ever. We have the foundation set, so we’re good to go. But sometimes in the midst of good stuff, there’s some tough stuff, too, and you have to decide, what are you going to do? Are you going to stay with it? Are you going to stick with it? Are you going to keep going?
Helen Keller was quoted as saying, “You can do anything you want if you stick to it long enough.” You can do anything you want if you stick to it long enough. Think about the source on that.
Or Walt Disney, not a perfect man, but one of the most inspiring people in regards to what he was able to accomplish in his life. He said, “All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.” I have to admit, I have to add a little bit if we have the courage to stick with them.
Diving into the subject of grit and tenacity, I came across some research around growth mindset, which was developed by a researcher from Stanford University named Carol Dweck. The growth mindset is the belief that we have the ability to learn and that it is not fixed, and it can change with effort. Here’s the crazy thing. Understanding that is one thing, but Dr. Dweck has actually gone on to show that if kids read and understand that, that the brain is not fixed, our learning is not fixed, but that it continues to grow, it changes the way they learn. They are much more likely to persevere if they fail just by having that knowledge of the growth mindset, period.
They are much more likely to persist, to persevere because they believe that failure is not a permanent condition, that it is a part of the growth and a part of moving forward. So, teach your kids that and teach yourself that. And it is so true that failure is not permanent. Failure is a part of the process, and it’s going to come.
I had this experience recently that helped me immensely on this front, and it had to do with the BIG Dream Gathering. As you know if you’ve been listening to DREAM THINK DO for a while, that we do BIG Dream Gatherings around the country. Thanks to the help of American Family Insurance, as we do them I take a film crew with me. We do short videos and we feature somebody in that community, somebody in that area who’s walking out a dream. Recently, we were at Winona State in Minnesota, and we were able to interview a big wall rock climber. This is big wall, specifically big wall.
This guy who climbs rock faces for a week-plus at a time had just gotten done with a climb where he had literally been on the wall, climbing a wall for eight days. Now this rock climber was named Eric Bernard, and we found out about Eric and he agreed to meet with us. Not only that, he agreed to take me rock climbing, because in Winona, there’s actually a rock formation that’s perfect for learning or remembering how to rock climb.
I spent a lot of time out in Montana, had done a fair amount of rock climbing, but it’d been years, so Eric said, “Hey, let’s go out.” I wanted to, but I said, “I want to experience some rock climbing with you, but I also want to talk with you about pushing through fear and sticking with it and all of that,” especially for somebody who had just come off of an eight-day rock climb. He was literally on that wall for eight days, not coming down, doing everything up there, cooking up there, sleeping up there, everything. It’s just mind-boggling.
He said, “What we’ll do is we’ll go up to this rock formation called Sugar Loaf.” You can Google it if you want to. He said, “We’ll do some rock climbing on the front,” and then he said, literally he said, “There’s a scramble on the back to get us up to the top, and we can get you up to the top of this rock formation.” I know what I think of when I think of scramble, like a scramble’s maybe I might have to put my hand down as I walk it to brace myself for a little bit.
Now a scramble in Eric’s mind is entirely different. The scramble meant that we were going to need to be roped up, wear helmets, have a harness, all of those things. It was actually still a very real climb. What’s funny, the reason why I tell you this is that we did this rock climbing on the front. Film crew’s there captured all of it. It was awesome. We go around to the back side, and he shows us this scramble, and it very quickly starts to set into my film crew that somebody is going to need to climb with me and climb just as aggressively as we were doing on the other side, even though Eric was calling it a scramble.
One of the team, our director, Brad, stepped out and said, “I’m doing it.” He’s not super comfortable with heights, not his favorite thing. He’d never done any kind of rock climbing. We’d not had him be involved with the rock climbing on the other side, kind of that pseudo training that Eric had done with me. So, Brad stepped into the harness, had the rope attached to it, put a helmet on, and started to climb. Now it wasn’t an eight-day climb, but for somebody who had never done anything like this, it was very real and very scary.
Eric went up first and I followed Eric, and then Brad followed me, and Brad was a true sport. We were like, “You don’t have to do this if you don’t want to,” but he really wanted to get the shot. He’d committed to doing it, and so it was a scary thing. There were times where he so wanted to quit. I’ll never forget. I came up over the lip of this thing, and it was one of the best views I’ve ever had in the Midwest. Apparently, on a clear day, you can see for almost 100 miles. It was absolutely beautiful, absolutely breathtaking.
But this lip, it was a little bit of an overhang as well, so all I could see was Brad’s rope. I couldn’t see Brad. I could just hear him coming up behind me, and there was a lot of effort. Then, one hand came over that lip, and then another hand came over that lip, and then his face came over that lip, and then he kind of almost like a snake came up over that lip and his body just hugged the rock, and he did it. He didn’t necessarily raise his arms in triumph. He kind of looked at me like he hated me, but he’d done it. He pushed through the fear, which is absolutely awesome. It was just an incredible experience to be up there together. I’ll post this at mitchmatthews.com\200. I’ll post the video so you can see parts of this experience. It was absolutely amazing.
But I can tell you, it’s just amazing to then get to talk with Eric because I talked with him about fear and talked with him about sticking with it. We were sitting at the base of Sugar Loaf after we got back down. Everybody lived. It was awesome. But I said, “We got to experience a little bit of fear. We got to experience a few heights.” I asked him, “Eric, are you still impacted by heights? Do you still have a fear of heights?”
And he said just a beautiful thing. He said, “I have a profound respect for heights.” He said, “Anybody that climbs needs to have a profound respect for heights.” He said, “And sure, I still feel the fear, but I’ve learned to push through it.” And he said, “You know, it’s calculated. It’s still a risk, and anybody that steps into risk, if you don’t feel fear,” he said, “there’s probably something wrong with you.”
“But with climbing and just like with anything else, there are calculated risks that you have to take, those risks where you step outside of your comfort zone, those risks where you step into things where you don’t quite know how it’s going to work out.” And he said, “When you do that, you have to give yourself permission …” These are my words, but, “You have to give yourself permission to ask some questions, to deal with some of those questions that start to creep into your brain and ask a better question.”
“You need to have a conscious conversation with yourself.” He said, “Because whether you’re climbing a rock or whether you’re going after a dream, you’re going to get tired. You’re going to get scared. You’re going to wonder if you’re ever going to get it done.” He said, “When you’re climbing, that happens all the time.” And he said he’s failed a number of times, and he said he’s learned a lot from those failures. It’s changed him. He said, “But you have to ask yourself, am I stopping because I’m scared or am I stopping because I’m actually in danger?”
“Because here’s the thing is, you don’t want to give up. You don’t want to quit just because you’re afraid.” One of his phrases that he used in that moment but actually throughout the morning climbs were, “Fear is temporary, but regret is forever.” Think about that. Fear is temporary, but regret is forever. And he would yell that out if there was a time where we needed to do a move that was stretching us or a move that kind of put us out and into a sense of even more risk.
We were still relatively safe. We had a harness on. He was guiding us. We had a helmet on, all of those things, but your body still felt scared. It still felt the fear. It still felt uncomfortable. You were stepping out of what you knew. He said, “But don’t let that fear stop you, because if you do, you’ll regret that forever.” He said, “But if you stick with it, you’re going to learn something about yourself. You’re going to push through that fear, and it changes you.” Especially with all the different type of climbs that he’s done, it’s given him tools to be successful.
What I loved was he drilled down just a little bit further. We’re all about the practicality of how you can apply this right here and right now. And maybe you’re in that. Maybe you’re in a moment of deciding is this right? Should I stay with it? Maybe you’re feeling some fear. Maybe it’s fear of the unknown. Maybe things are changing around you. Maybe you’re not quite sure you can stay with it. Maybe you’re not quite sure that it’s going to work out.
And this is the practical wisdom that Eric gave me, and I’ve been applying it ever since. I’ve heard different versions of this, but for some reason, and maybe it’s because I had just come off of rock climbing that morning, but for some reason, it just stuck. He said, “You know, it’s important to have a plan. It’s important to take some time to build a plan,” and that’s definitely what we believe in. We’re DREAM THINK DO. We’re all about dreaming bigger, thinking better, and doing more.
I believe that those are three separate things, so we need to dream and say what is the dream? What is that thing we want to achieve or experience, accomplish? And then we build a plan, to actually say, “All right, this is our best guess. This is our hypothesis of how it’s going to work.” Then we need to start taking action. That’s the doing part. That’s when we go after it. He said, “When you’re in the midst of doing it …” And he equated that to climbing the rock. He pointed back to that eight-day climb. He said there were so many different times where he started to look up maybe 100 feet above him and would wonder, “Can I really make that move? Are we really going to be able to get around that outcropping or that challenge?”
“But if I spend too much time in that, then I’m going to really start to get lost in that. My thoughts are going to start to betray me.” He said, “Or, I could look down. Here I was in a harness and attached to a rope and relatively safe.” He said, “But I knew that if I fall, I could fall 100 feet before the rope actually caught me.” He said, “If I spend too much time on that, that’s not going to produce good thinking. That’s not going to help me to be focused. That’s not going to help me to be at my best.”
And so he said, “When I’m climbing the rock, I focus on the 14 inches that’s right in front of me.” And literally, he put his hands up. He said, “This is the area I’m going to focus on.” And he said, “If I keep doing that time and time again,” he said, “I’ll get through. I’ll push through. I’ll push through the fear. I’ll push through the thing that’s scaring me. I’ll push through that thing where I doubt whether I can do it or not.” He said, “If I focus on what’s right in front of me, that 14 inches that’s right in front of me, it makes all the difference.”
I just love that, and it’s something that I started to apply in a lot of different areas of my life, the podcast being one of them. There are times where I wonder, “All right, should I keep going?” This is a lot of work, and there’s risk to it, there’s cost to it, there’s time that it takes. But I did some dreaming. I’ve done some planning, and I know where this fits into my plan. I don’t know about 100 days from now. I don’t know 100 episodes from now, but today I’m going to do it. Today, I’m going to hit record. Today, I’m going to reach out.
Today, I’m going to do that research. I’m going to do it. I’m going to work on that 14 inches in front of me. I don’t know what that equates to for you, what that 14 inches equates to today. Maybe it’s pushing through a meeting. Maybe it’s fully engaging in a conversation. Maybe it’s doubling down and signing up for a class. Maybe it’s reaching out and asking for help. It could be new things, trying something new, making that phone call.
I don’t know what it is, and there might be a part of you that says, “Oh, my gosh, I don’t know about this in 10 days or 100 days. I don’t know about this, whether I’ll be able to keep going. I’m not sure if it’s going to work out.” But to be able to say, “All right, for today, for what is right in front of me, for this 14 inches that’s right in front of me, I can do this.” And you can. You can do this.
Now here’s the thing. There are absolutely sometimes where it is completely okay to quit. Sometimes it takes more guts to quit. That’s the great expanse. That’s the big challenge, but in most cases, I know for me at least, in most cases, in day to day, it’s not about quitting. It’s about sticking to it. But I do want to say if you’re thinking about quitting, seek out some wise counsel. Don’t ask everybody for advice, but ask those few people in your life that you really trust, those people that love you, and they love you enough to also push you. Ask them for some counsel.
If you’re like me, take some time and pray about it. Seek some wisdom. Seek some help from God. If that’s not your thing, that’s totally okay. You can jump this recommendation, but if you’re like me, it’s amazing. It’s one of those, I realize that if it’s just about me, I’m screwed. If it was just up to me, it’s over. So, I need a little help. I need a little revelation. I need support. It’s amazing to me, sometimes when I’ll pray, sometimes I’ll get a nudge right when I’m praying, but sometimes it’s not necessarily then. It’s later when I’m reading a book and a paragraph just jumps out to me as just the answer to the question I was just asking, or maybe sometimes it’s listening to something like this, to podcast.
And my hope is … Literally, it’s one of my prayers before any episode I record, is let this be something that helps someone today specifically. Let it come at that right moment for them. Whether you’re listening to these in order or whether you’re just going out of order and just grabbing whatever episode seems relevant for the time, my prayer is literally that it always gets to you right at a time where you need it. So, that’s one of my prayers, and maybe you can pray along with that as well.
Also look to different things that inspire you, that help you to stay with it. That’s probably exactly why you’re listening to this podcast right now. I hope it is, that you’re listening to this as a part of a way to stay with the things that you’re called to, the things that you want to, the things that you need to accomplish but you need to push through some fear, push through that unknown to make it happen. That’s what I want for you.
So, my hope is as you listen to this, that you take some time to celebrate. Take some time to celebrate the 200 episodes because you’re a part of that, and I couldn’t do it without you. I wouldn’t want to do it without you, and I love hearing from you. Thanks so much for celebrating with me.
But also, if there’s something in your life right now, something you’ve been wrestling with, or maybe it’s something that’s been rumbling around inside for you. Maybe you haven’t even shared it with anybody but you’ve been contemplating quitting, making a big change, stopping doing something, especially if it’s a dream. If it’s something that you’ve been wanting to pursue, something that you’ve been pursuing, something you’ve been working on for a while, my hope is, is that you take some advice from a weathered mountain climber and a somewhat weathered podcaster to be able to say, “All right, dream.”
Give yourself that permission to dream, and give yourself permission to build a plan once in a while. But when you’re in the midst of doing, put your head down and focus on that 14 inches that’s right in front of you, because as you do that, you can bring excellence. You can amaze people. You can break through that fear, and as you do, it’ll have a ripple effect in your life and those around you as well.
And hey… let’s celebrate together. Leave a comment and let me know if an episode of DTD helped you… … made you laugh… sparked a dream… inspired you… made you think… or ever gave you a needed boost. I’d love to hear from and celebrate with you! THANKS!