To trust, look within, and listen to that voice inside is the key to unlocking our full potential. Our deepest, most heartfelt dreams are like street lights on the sidewalk, they are there to show us the way, creating pathways to our soul’s destinies. To realize one’s dream is a person’s only obligation, and our soul’s assignment is to realize what our dreams are, connecting us to our deepest desires. And it’s never too late to follow your dreams.
Live to the fullest
Our destiny is what allows us to live our lives to the fullest and make our greatest contributions to the world. When we learn what our heart is telling us and start following these dreams, we serve others from a place of bliss, generosity, and love. Our path to a fulfilled life begins with going within, listening to the voice in our hearts, and learning our greatest truths.
“Follow your dreams and the universe will open doors for you when there were only walls.” -unknown
When I was a little girl growing up, I was really into dancing. I took every kind of dance class there was; ballet, jazz, modern, tap, pointe. By the time I was in high school, I was a member of a modern dance company and was the leader of my dance team at school. I had the opportunity to tour different cities in Texas, performing, going to competitions, and showing my skills to the world. I loved to dance and knew that this was my passion and the reason why I was put on this earth.
When I had the chance to dance, I always felt so alive, I could feel and hear my heart singing. I knew this was my calling and I remember telling myself that I was one of the lucky ones because I figured out early in life what my dream and passion was. Over the years, no matter how bad things became, no matter what struggles or frustrations I was going through in life, I knew that I always had dance. I was meant to be a dancer. That was enough for me.
Once I graduated high school, I felt, very real in my heart, that I had a decision to make. I could either try my luck at becoming a professional dancer and go after my dream, or I could take the safe route and go to college for something practical, like business.
I started listening to the people around me who said things like “ballerinas don’t make very much money,” “your career will be over by the time you are 35,” “one injury and you are out for good,” “it’s too competitive.” I feared becoming one of those poor starving artists, living with 10 roommates and being 40 years old. So, I did the practical thing and decided to not follow my dream, but to pursue a degree in marketing. As I took my final bows at my senior dance recital, I worried that I’d never again feel that same “dancer’s high” or bask in the glow of bright stage lights.
College and career
Despite my fears, I packed my bags and left for college with a hope and a smile. Fast forward 10 years. After graduating college I started a career in marketing. But I found myself feeling frustrated. While I was in a really great job in a fun company developing phenomenal marketing campaigns, I felt resentful. I was going to work in a cubicle and regretting not trying to go after my dream of dancing. Daydreaming about being back on stage. I would find myself doing tap routines under my desk at work. I also noticed that my friends who had gone after the not so typical “adult” careers seemed to be happier and more fulfilled in their lives. They didn’t necessarily make a lot of money but they also didn’t seem to have a lot of the stress.
When I looked deep into my artist friend’s eyes, the ones who had pursued their dreams, I saw a glimmer of pure joy and could literally feel a sense of inner peace that they were illuminating. When I looked at my professional friends, I noticed that they all had started to talk and act a little bit different. We had picked up on our companies’ jargon, ways of thinking, and were saying things like “core competency,” “buy-in,” “empowerment,” and were quite frankly, drinking the “corporate kool-aid.” What the H was going on here?
Had I missed my true calling?
After a few more years, I found myself lying awake at night and wondering if I had missed my true calling and dream in life. Had I been meant to be a dancer and ignored my intuition. It was as if I had turned my back on myself and it didn’t feel too good.
I started questioning everything—was I in the right career, the right city, the right relationship? Did I miss my one chance at true happiness? Was my soul’s purpose just completely ignored because I had to go the safe route? What would I have done if I hadn’t been so scared and was brave enough to follow my dream? These questions kept me up for many sleepless nights. Then one day, I heard it. It wasn’t loud, but it was clear. There was a voice in my head that said “just dance.” “If you just start dancing again, everything will become easier.”
So, this time, I was feeling at a breaking point. I was either going to quit my job and move to a new city, or I was going to stop feeling sorry for myself and confirm what I already knew in my heart: that I live to dance.
The next day, I was walking to the train station home from work and I noticed a dance studio with a master class offered at a reasonable rate. I decided to give it a try. I started attending more classes and even learned new forms of dance. When I started taking dance classes again, I found that I didn’t actually hate my 9-5 job that much, and it started to seem more fun. I found myself looking forward to going to it and on those days that I felt stressed at work, I found that the dance classes gave me confidence and something to reassure me that everything was going to be okay.
Room for Dance
What I learned is that I actually have room for both things in my life! I can have a professional business career, and I can still pursue my dream of becoming a dancer. I don’t have to jump out of the marketing world to go after my dreams of the dancing world. It became clear that I will always come back to the dream, no matter how much time has gone by. If I want something badly enough, I will find a way to make it happen.
I no longer stress about the missed opportunity of not following my dream. Instead, I find inspiration every day and take time to hone my creativity. I can have room for both in my life and still feel fulfilled.
The point is, it’s never too late to follow your dreams.
About the Author
Erin is the CEO of Command Joy, a nonprofit based in San Diego CA. Its goal and purpose is simple: to help people start to command joy in their lives. Command Joy is committed to showing you how to live your life with enthusiasm and energy. It is time we all stand together and command joy. Connect with Command Joy on their website: www.commandjoy.org or email: firstname.lastname@example.org