I am the Queen of Unfinished projects. I start everything, often at the same time and then they remain unfinished. Why?
I often say I lack focus. It is obvious, if I had focus I would buckle down and finish all I started.
I often, then, think that what I lack is not focus, but planning. Perhaps if I wrote a plan down. After all one of my favorite speakers, Steve Maraboli says: “If you have a goal, write it down. If you do not write it down, you do not have a goal – you have a wish.”
But I write things down. I am also the queen of making lists. I take a certain pleasure out of putting items in a to do list and then crossing them off as I do them. Ok, I now need to confess a secret: I some times will add items I have already done to the list only for the pleasure of crossing it off – that is a little mental, right?
But simply making a list is different from making a plan or listing goals. A list is simple, such as : do laundry, take book backs to the library, call a friend. A goal is different, I cannot just write down: become a doctor. I have to list the steps and set about accomplishing that goal. I cannot achieve that goal with the performance of only one task.
So I keep going on and on to anyone who would listen that lately I lack focus and I lack planning and most importantly I lack goals. And I go on telling people how I was so focused when I first arrived in this country. I didn’t let anything deter me from my goals.
What has changed in the past 30 years since then?
Today, on Martin Luther Kings’s Day I realized a big thing. I don’t need a plan, I don’t need clear goals (I didn’t really have any set clear goals back then, I had a dream), all I need is a dream and the belief that I can accomplish that dream.
So I came to the realization that what I lack lately is dreaming and believing. People are different, I am the type of person that doesn’t need goals, I need dreams, I need fairy-tales.
When I first arrived in this country I didn’t have clear goals, I had dreams! And I had a very powerful weapon on my side: Belief! I believed it in my goals no matter how unattainable they seemed at that time!
I believed that God would take care of me no matter what! I believe that good things come to people that do good! I believed in working hard and being rewarded for it. I believe in improving myself each day! I believed that I would be okay no matter what!
And guess what? My life today is a combination of all my beliefs. I think that in the past 30 years I lost the naivete and innocence that I had when I first arrived. I am smarter, more cultured. I now speak English, I now have a great job, I now have money.
Perhaps dreams are the stuff of the desperate. When you don’t have anything else on your side, you dream! I arrived with no money, no job, no English, no clear goals, no idea at all of what I would be doing. I struggled, I struggled a lot. I heard a lot nos, and I had the disbelief of friend and still I marched on. I arrived with only one dream: a better life. And that can have different meanings to different people, to me meant being able to go to college, getting a good paying job, buying a home, becoming legal in this country. I did all that, I have all that now and even more.
Am I dreamless lately? perhaps a bit, or perhaps I just have focused my energy into one specific dream, finding a partner. And that is going well, or bad, depending on how you look at it.
So, this post that is very representative of my life – constructive chaos! While writing I am checking and chatting with people from E-Harmony and POF. I am organizing my underwear drawer (why do I need 40 bras, when I only use 3 or 4?). I am taking stuff from storage and taking stuff to storage. I am chatting with my accountant on some work issues (and also with the computer guy, because the connection to work is not that great). I had breakfast. I started watching Braveheart. I made lists of what I need to accomplish today and during the week. I am indeed the Queen of starting projects and by the grace of God some will actually get finished.
I have been incapable of finishing a post in the past 10 days. I have started many on favorite subjects, such as dealing the troubles with my car – how that is teaching me patience, the blessing of having an aunt that is turning 106 years old -what am I doing to age gracefully, my dates with the math teacher – how I push people away, etc, etc
So this time I am going to do something totally out of character for me, I am going to publish this post without being finished. This post is without a clear thought and not what I want to present you with. I would need to read it a few more times, and clean it up, but I fear never publishing it, like the posts before. I know it will be hard for me to live with that, I know it will be even harder for you to make sense of it, but at this point I am choosing not to have another day go by without publishing a post.
What I want you to take from this post is the following: (I so hope that you are able to get something from it and not have 5 minutes that you can never get it back)
The importance of having dreams and believing you can accomplish them!
You don’t need to be organized and have a plan to accomplish things! You do need, however, to believe in that which you want to accomplish! You don’t even need clear goals. It is okay to dream of abstracts such as a better life! All you need is to wake up in the morning and put one foot in front of the other and start working with the aim of getting that better life.
You need to work hard for what you want! Nothing worth having and dreaming of having is free and easy.
Above all you need to believe that that which you dream of is already yours. You are deserving of and it will be yours through hard work and perseverance. Why? Because you have God on your side and He will never let you down.
Please don’t think I am saying don’t have any plans, that is not it. A lot people need that structure. What I am saying is that I was too worried about making plans, establishing clear goals, etc that I forgot what is inherently inside of me, which is my ability to dream and believe in that dream.
At the end of the day we need to work with the weapons we have, and I was given a disorganized mind and a believing heart!
May this Martin Luther King Day wake in you your dormant dreams!! Have a dream and believe in your dreams! Fight for your beliefs with the arms you have! No matter how small or big your dream is, honor it!
“Faith is taking the first step even when you can’t see the whole staircase.”
― Martin Luther King Jr.