In a perfect world, when you embark on your life's journey to become what you want to become, you would receive the support from your inner circle of family with that occasional nod of approval from your friends. Ideally, taking your knocks would be minimized to just losing a few dollars instead of a few thousand and the payoff would be substantial.
That would be in a perfect world.
We know that when you make the decision to live your dream, there will be more than enough people to voice their opinions about it, both pro and con. It's expected. But in many cases, you may hear more of the cons than you will the pros. You will hear people say things like, "Why do you want to do that?" or "You will never make money that way."
You will hear even more people say things like, "You should stick with what you know." or "You need to be concerned with getting a job and taking care of your family."
So what do you do when the naysayers speak? What do you do when they voice what you've probably already said to yourself a thousand times over?
The easy answer of course is to keep on pushing and ignore them. In theory, that sounds like the most viable thing to do. But we know that the human brain will hear and internalize negative comments before praise depending upon your background. It's easier to accept failure than success. It's easier to comprehend the inability to achieve a goal than to simply reach for it because if it were that easy, everyone would have done so and we would all be basking in the rays of success. Sometimes you have to reinforce what you believe and not what you hear. For myself, that meant planting images that would help me believe in my goal and keep me focused.
When I wrote my first novel, I would keep my dream alive by taking a normal paperback novel, wrapping it in white paper and writing the name of my book on the cover and placing it on my coffee table. Sometimes, I would look at it and imagine that it was my completed book. I would tune out the negative and immerse myself in my storyline; so much to the point that there wasn't any room for any comments that would derail my positive thought process.
Guard your dream as fiercely as you would guard your child. In many ways, your dream is your baby. If someone gives you a reason why you can't, you give them two as to why you can. If someone questions your ability to reach high, you can question if they have any dreams that have gone unfulfilled. If they admit it, ask them why they gave up so easily. They may see themselves in you. They may even be jealous.
You can entertain their thoughts, but you can throw wild parties for yours. Just remember that you will never know what could have been unless you do!
~ J.L. Whitehead