Being bold



6 minutes


Very often I hear people telling me that they have a dream but it is impossible to achieve. They have a dream job, a dream trip, a dream lifestyle. But these are labelled dreams because they are just that, dream that can never become realities.

Why such thoughts? They buy into mediocrity. They think that achieving their dreams is something impossible. Their lofty dreams remain dreams only because they fail to be bold and take action.

Having courage is the first step towards making your dreams come true.

Find meaning

What are your goals in life? Do you have a big vision that you wish to achieve?

If you find yourself dissatisfied with life, what is it that can truly satisfy you? Ask yourself this question and ponder deeply about it. Be honest with yourself. Your heart most likely already know what you truly wish for, hence the nagging feeling of dissatisfaction.

By chasing your goals, you live the meaning of your life. You push yourself to pour your heart and soul into each waking moment.

When you pursue your goals, you hunger for success. Success in this case doesn’t refer to being successful financially or career-wise. It means succeeding in achieving your goals in life. Stay hungry and make yourself push hard to reach each milestone towards your goals.

Embrace failures

It is good to fail early. Fail early. Fail often. This helps you to refine your goals. You might have a grand vision but it is usually only a rough concept, even if you can be very detailed with how you frame your goal.

Through multiple failures, you start to have a better understanding of what you truly want to achieve. Your vision become more defined and your goal takes steps towards being closer to reality. You learn what doesn’t work, but you also learn what could possibly work.

Learn from each mistakes and setbacks. Use each failure as a lesson to progress. We are taught that failure is a step backwards. Why not look at it as a step forward? Failure is still progress, just not in the way we expected or intended.

By being comfortable with failure, we also learn to avoid being paralysed by perfectionism. We are experienced with handling failures. We don’t need to make each iteration perfect. When we have something that is good enough, we put it out and see whether it survives. Even if it succeeds, there are ways that it failed. It is through those failures that we learn to refine our output and improve upon our next iteration.

Stay motivated

There will come a point where you find only opposition. Nobody around you believes in you or your dream. You need to stay motivated in order to survive the fear, self-doubt and criticism.

“Stay hungry. Stay foolish.”—Steve Jobs

No one can see your vision as clearly as yourself. You might not be able to convince anyone else, but you need to retain the motivation to achieve your goals. Take the criticism as feedback on how to improve. Fuel your courage with fear. Quash your self-doubt with the knowledge that you survived previous failures.

Motivate yourself by aiming for the star. Even if you fail, you’ll still land on the moon.

Recognise flow

When you are in the state of flow, you are immersed in your work churning out the maximum creative output. You are at your optimal state to produce creative work.

To be in a state of flow, you need to surround yourself with the ideal environment to stimulate you. Identify what physical and mental state you need to be in to be able to produce work with seeming effortless ease.

For me, a clear mind, good music and a cup of coffee is a start. With no worries or stray thoughts to distract me, I put on my headphones to spur my mind with my music that inspire me. The headphones are usually enough to shut myself off from the outside world, though there are times I need to work behind closed doors to completely immerse myself in my work.

The fragrance of a cup of hot coffee is just my Pavlov’s bell. The aroma of good coffee tells my body that I’m ready to hunker down and be creative.

How do you now you are in a state of flow? It is hard to describe but you’ll know the feeling once you get there.

There are times when I find it hard to take photos. I press the shutter but I don’t feel a connection to my photos. But once I get into the flow, I keep moving around to take shots. I can even instinctively know a shot is poor without even reviewing the photo. I just know, and I compensate but moving an inch lower or higher, or make a slight change in angle.

When I write, I know I’m in the flow when ideas keep coming and words keep flowing, pun not intended, out of my pen. One thought leads to the next. Ideas link themselves to each other, and I can effortlessly string them together to write a long piece such as this.

Be bold

You need to have the courage to stick to your grand vision and lofty goals. Be bold and go forth to create what you want.

Hope is wishing something would happen. Faith is believing something will happen. Courage is making something happen.

Don’t be afraid of losing that stable job just because you are afraid of being unable to afford the luxuries that you’re so used to. Be bold and recognise that what you fear are mere illusions. You have nothing to lose. There will be ways to somehow make things work even if you fail.

When you are bold, you take control of your destiny. Dare to chase your dream. Take the leap of faith.

Only you know what you truly want for yourself. You can’t expect others help you accomplish your life goals. They don’t know what you want to achieve and they have their own dreams to chase.

If you sit around and wait, nothing well happen. That doesn’t mean you are helpless to make it happen. You are most probably just waiting for the right time to do it. The truth is, there isn’t a perfect time. You must dare to jump into the unknown. Things will slowly fall in place only after you have taken the leap of faith.

It is only when you have already set forth to achieve your goals that people might start to join your cause. Or they might not and you need to grind your way on a lonely journey. Whatever happens, think back on the points mentioned in this article and keep working hard.

Find meaning. Embrace failures. Stay motivated. Recognise flow. Be bold.

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