The reason for you being able to read this post is drive.
My drive towards this project… And I can’t tell you how ridiculously joyous I am, that I have this drive!
I’ve been writing poetry and my thoughts down for almost as long as I can remember, but my computer file system tells me that the first poems were created in 2012. I guess that must be true then. 2012.
What happened in 2012 and why I started writing poems is a story for a different day, but basically it was the worst year of my life. It sprung a lot of emotions and made me share my inner thoughts through poetry with my computer and only a select number of close friends.
Since the beginning, words came to me in my thoughts and it gave me extreme energy whenever I started writing them down, got inspired, and watched the rest of the piece unfold.
The simple act of writing some of my thoughts down opened up a whole another side of me that I did not know existed and it has since given me a big amount of joy and emotional stability. It has given a purpose to those sad periods where I feel down. Writing stuff down can even get me feeling optimistic about the future.
This surprising activity of writing thoughts down whenever I felt bad has helped me countless ways in my life even though it might seem like a weird habit at first. And ever since I decided to go public, a decision based on great talks I had with my friends, I have felt more transparent as a person.
As you can read, I could talk about this habit for much, much longer, but that’s not the point. My drive is not the important thing. The important thing is your drive, and the reasons for why you should have one if you don’t.
First ask yourself, what are you excited about right now? What is the next big project? It doesn’t matter what it is, how ambitious it is, or how stupid it may feel before you start — the important thing is that it is something you strive for, something that gives you energy, makes you feel inspired just thinking about it, and something you would feel proud of accomplishing.
Nothing is too stupid or weird! Heck, when I went public as a 23-year-old male poet I felt weird talking to my friends about it. Sometimes I still do, but I still feel that it has empowered me to be focused on a project and have an idea of what the future might entail.
Doing things you might be afraid of, in order to reach your dream, is an important step in the process of succeeding. The fear can be overcome if you have interest and a special drive for your project.
The courage you gain from crossing your comfort zone and what you can achieve after that is almost limitless.
To end the analogy of my story, after I went public with my poems I wrote a short story about immigration that I sent to a national newspaper. The paper is rather famous in Denmark, I knew it from countless social studies assignments during my high-school years. I did it because I thought strongly about the subject and thought: why not?
They replied the next day that they wanted to run my short story. I was amazed. At first, I did not believe it. A photographer came by to take pictures of me and a few days later I read the article on the front page of the newspaper’s website and thought I’d buy a hard copy. I went down to a local store and noticed my own face on the cover of the newspaper…
That was a scary moment. My first thought was: wait, did I agree to be on the front page? What if people disagree with my comments; will they find out where I live and hunt me down or something?
But after I calmed down and one of my friends called to congratulate me, I realized during that conversation that it was actually quite an achievement. The first time I ever write something and decide to send it to a national newspaper because why not, they decide to run it on the FRONT PAGE.
I am extremely grateful and proud of this experience. It goes to show that even though I was very afraid at the beginning, I succeeded because I went out of my comfort zone to do something that I felt strongly about. After that first sentence, my drive set everything in motion and took it from there.
Before we end here, I want you to try to think of what you enjoy doing in order to follow your dream. If you’re completely blank talk to your friends and family, they might be able to help you brainstorm what you’ve done in the past and what has brought you the most joy. And, if you feel like it, even comment on this post.
Now imagine where you want to be in regards to that part of your life within the next month, year, few years and even longer into the future. Once you have an idea of where you want to go it is much easier to plan ahead short-term and take the little steps that slowly turn into bigger and bigger steps that help you achieve your goal.
No matter what you enjoy doing, whether it is writing like me, re-designing your house, playing music, or whatever you can think of, consider where you want to go with that project in the present, near-future, and even far-future.
Don’t sit and wait for an opportunity, but think of ways that you can nudge yourself in the right direction because life does not wait. Giving up on dreams is hard, but postponing them forever hoping that you will eventually get there is even harder.