Most success stories begin at a pinnacle. A pinnacle in one’s life when they’ve become fed up of living a certain lifestyle and decide to take a chance on themselves, on their dreams. No matter their background or experience, almost everyone has had (or dreamt about having) that defining moment when they finally made the decision to take a leap of faith, quit their present and follow their dreams. Despite all that they were going through, it was only at that very moment – when they did make that big jump (outside of their comfort zones) – did things begin to turn around and their dreams began to become reality.
Well, I too, had that moment. However, when I took that huge leap of faith, and mustered all the bravery to spread my wings and fly, I fell. I fell hard. And just when I thought I hit rock bottom, I slipped and fell again. I had to learn the hard way that MY success story was not going to fashion so many others that had once inspired me. And so my story begins…
I am a writer. I express myself through writing. It is not a hobby. It is not a day-job. It is my life. I don’t know how not to be one. I once held a desk job in the corporate world but couldn’t fathom the thought that each “productive day” at work was a day wasted from writing. So I had my pinnacle moment. I decided to quit my job and follow my dreams of becoming a renowned journalist and author. It was a dream I held for many years and I thought that every successful/famous person I had ever heard of did just that -they quit their regular jobs to follow their dreams and the result: things turned out great. It was my fairytale.
However, I was so focused on the prize, on the moment when I finally got to put my foot in the glass slipper and achieve my dream that I forgot to plan for when the clock struck midnight. I forgot to plan for when things got hard. And I never once thought that I wouldn’t feel the magic of my dreams anymore.
So often we believe in the dream and we work hard to achieve it, but no one ever prepares us for what may come after. What happens when things begin to fall apart? When the glitter fades away or when you’ve climbed to the top of that mountain but can’t find the strength to make it back down? What happens when you have all this belief and faith in yourself, but the struggles and opposition that comes with stepping outside of your comfort zone, confronts you?
I don’t have all the answers. I don’t always get it right. In fact, I spend more time dreaming than actually taking action to accomplish my goals. I don’t always use discernment when making decisions, even decisions that could potentially compromise my beliefs. We all fall victim to temptations at times. I’ve had many doubts and disappointments while on my journey of achieving success. I’ve even had my heart broken along the way. I’ve lost friendships I thought would last forever. I felt lonely. I felt broken and I’ve often lost hope. I’ve been ashamed. I’ve been concerned way too much about the way I look. I once decided to go wherever the wind blew me, and try new things. That was a disaster. Then I decided to become a hermit and live in my bedroom forever because people can drain you and if you’re drained enough it often leads to depression, so I decided it was best to just avoid human interaction at all costs. I’ve wanted to give up and just wash my hands of all this “going after your dreams” talk. I’ve been through a roller coaster of emotions, because it all seemed too hard.
But, I didn’t give up. I didn’t give in. I realized that the pain of falling short is nothing compared to the shame of stopping short. Instead, I’ve decided that I would rather give it all that I’ve got then find out that this writing life isn’t for me, than to give up because of fear and spend the rest of my life wondering “what if?” I realized that this burning feeling inside me isn’t just my “passion”. It is something even more significant.
So here I am again, writing. I didn’t wait for it to be exactly on the hour to begin or for it to be the first of a month or beginning of a new week. All things, that in the past, I would have waited on in order to start. I realized that waiting for the perfect moment is holding out for something that doesn’t exist. Instead, it’s just another day of the week. The season hasn’t changed since I last picked up a pen, nor did I become famous over night. However, one thing that’s an absolute in my life of paradox is that I’m as wounded as anyone else. In fact, many of you may experience things that I may never be strong enough to endure; yet we’re both still here. Not only are both our hearts still beating, but that feeling inside – maybe it’s a little voice that pops up every now and then to remind you of that dream you once had, or it’s that emotion that you can’t seem to put an adjective to – is still there and it’s time we acknowledge it.
I’ve come to FINALLY realize, after much tears, prayers, prophetic words spoken over my life, writing-block spells, relapses, and procrastination, that this feeling is not my passion but it’s my purpose.
I know, I know, you’re probably thinking. “Aren’t they the same thing Kay? Passion and Purpose?” Well, often times they have been used interchangeably. I’ve been guilty of thinking the same myself. For quite a while this idea confused me. I read many books that spoke on each topic, in hopes of getting some help to figure it all out, but to no avail. However, I eventually discovered that they’re not the same.
Well, how do I know this? Unfortunately (and fortunately) I learnt the long and hard way that there’s a process to get from one’s passion point to one’s purpose point, and there are A LOTTT of learning curves and road signs and stops along the way. In fact, your passion can only take you so far, but if it isn’t what you’re meant to do, there will be no light at the end of that road.
So, if like me, you’ve asked yourself one or too many times before, “What was I really put on this earth to do? What’s my purpose?” Then, let me applaud you by saying you’re on the right track. So many people just exist. They live life either on the edge, or nowhere close because they’re just going with the flow, taking no time to stop and figure out what’s the real mission of their existence on planet Earth. They never once think about asking themselves this critical question. But you did. So congratulations, you made it through step one.
Step two – If you want to find out what’s you’re purpose, maybe it would be a good idea to seek the giver of purpose. **hint**hint**
You see I’ve learnt that there is one person responsible for my purpose and position in life and that person is God. He has been my refuge and I his co-writer in this journey called life. He has heard my every dream and also my every cry. And even though I’ve had many doubts and disappointments along the way, God continues to make my dreams come true. But guess what? We have something in common. He is just as much my God as He is yours, which means, He can help you figure out your place in this life as well.
Please know that since conception God placed a seed within you and that seed is called your PURPOSE. Like seeds, your purpose has to be planted, and would take some time before it can rise through the dirt and spring forth into the world AND even a longer time to bear fruit or bloom. [The point: Take time to figure out your true purpose. We were all born with one so don’t you ever doubt that.] Don’t let anyone (including your own self doubt) hinder the calling you were specifically crafted to accomplish. The beauty about all of this is, when the purpose, not the passion, is truly cultivated, the possibilities of its growth are endless.
I can’t wait to see all that you were born to do!