It takes a brave person to go after their dreams.
It’s much easier to stay in that safe place, fit in that nice little box, do what’s expected... but that's not you right?
You’ve always known that there was something different about you, and now you've decided to follow your true path - and are willing to do what it takes to get there.
You know within yourself that it's time for you to release the part of you that you've been hiding away for so long.
It’s exciting - you are full of energy and enthusiasm.
And you are absolutely terrified.
You start making progress and finally wake up excited about the day ahead - you want to share that excitement with the people around you. But then you come crashing down to earth when your passion is met with apathy, concern or criticism.
All you want is some encouragement. A simple, "I believe in you" or even just a "well done" would mean the world.
I mean, it's hard enough as it is, right? Your own brain is giving you enough doubts - what you need is reassurance.
So - if the people around you don't support you, I'd like you to remember the following:
1. You Can Do This Without Them!
It's a huge help when the people around you support you - it makes things a lot easier - but you need to know that your success is down to you.
You can choose to be held back by other people's opinions, or you can choose to trust in yourself enough to not need other people's approval.
Work on building yourself up and spend more time with people who DO support you.
2. They See The World In A Different Way
If someone is insecure, they could well be projecting their own insecurities onto you.
People may become bitter or jealous of you, because you are a reminder that they aren't chasing their own dreams.
People will also try to talk you out of chasing dreams that they have failed to realise - sometimes from a genuine place of protection.
However, this is your journey - do not let other people's beliefs become your own.
3. You Can Fail At What You Don't Want
When I was 16, I was fired from my job in a wire factory.
Spending 10 hours a day cutting wires is definitely not what I aspired to do with my life, but I still failed.
I'm really thankful for this experience, because it taught me that I might as well take a chance on what I did really want.
3 weeks later I had moved to Leeds to study dance and drama and had started my (very rocky) journey along my true path.
4. You Never Know What's Around The Corner
You might tell yourself that they need more time to get their heads around it, you'll stay in your cosy little box for a little bit longer - just to keep the peace, you'll definitely do it soon... once you can get them to understand.
But the thing is - time is the most precious thing in the world and things can change in an instant.
Do you really want to risk looking back and wishing you had gone all in - wondering what could have been if you had?
5. You Are NOT Responsible For Other People's Happiness
I repeat - YOU ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR OTHER PEOPLE'S HAPPINESS.
Fast forward 5 years and imagine you held back - to keep other people happy.
What are your relationships like now? How do you feel about yourself?
Now flip that and see yourself 5 years in the future, having gone all in on your dreams.
What are your relationships like now? How do you feel about yourself now?
If you hold yourself back, to keep other people happy, it will only damage your relationships in the long term - you will end up resenting people.
Ask yourself - will your misery really make other people happy anyway? And if it does, then why are they in your life?
If it's genuine concern that people have for you, you need to get out there and take action anyway - show them what you are capable of and that they needn't be concerned.
Who knows, you might even inspire others to chase their own dreams in the future!
6. Set Boundaries
Be open and honest with people about how you are feeling.
You may need to be blunt about the fact that you are going to carry on with or without their support.
Limit your time around people who are negative and set boundaries around what you will and won't discuss. You are responsible for your own life and are in control of your future.
I strongly believe that contrary to what most people think, following your true path is the most unselfish thing you can do - because, in the long term, what you achieve will largely benefit those around you.
I'm not saying it's easy - it's not and it's not supposed to be either.
You will face obstacles, you will have times when you think nothing is happening.
You will wonder if it's worth it?
BUT... you know deep down inside yourself that it is.
Because you weren’t born to be ordinary... you were born to shine!