Everyone has a dream.
A dream means different things to different people. What a dream means to a person is largely predicated on the person’s perspective. Dreams are ‘pictures of promise.’ Dreams are ‘portraits of the future.’ They are ‘indelible sketches on our mental canvass by the ink of imagination.’
Some people believe that dreams are their own exclusive conception. They reject the idea that they could be actors in a well-crafted script of a perfect screenwriter. Whichever side of the divide you might be, nothing is exhilarating as achieving your dreams. That’s when the ‘pictures of promise’ become ‘handleable reality.’
Promise + Process = Product.
I have experienced few significant moments – the ‘this is that’ moment – when promise became reality; when ‘the word became flesh.’ Moments when I quietly recited Mungo Park’s words:
‘And I saw with infinite pleasure the great object of my mission…’
The road between ‘promise’ and ‘achievement’ is laced with ‘bumpy process.’ Having a dream is one thing; achieving the dream is another thing. Your attitude and reaction to ‘bumpy process’ is a test of how strong is your desire to achieve your dreams. When you ‘engage a promise,’ you must ’embrace the process’ in order to enjoy ‘the product.’ It’s tough ‘process’ that turns lofty ‘promise’ into outstanding ‘product.’
It’s Common to Everyone.
Though this is my experience, yet I believe it’s a universal experience. I know you too can identify with this experience. You started out. You are working it out. You are on the road to achieve your dreams. You are overwhelmed on the journey. But you can’t get off. You can’t turn aside. You must stay on this bumpy road.
Now, why should you stay on this road?
Why should you embrace the journey towards achieving your dreams?
Why should you embrace the process?
Here are 5 compelling reasons:
(1) The Process Tests Your Resoluteness.
The process wants to test if you really mean business. It wants to see what you are willing to endure. It wants to see the price you are willing to pay. It wants to find out how much you are willing to stretch and be stretched. The process says, ‘Prove it if you mean it. Show how desperate you need it.’ When you stepped out on the journey towards achieving your dreams, you signed up for a marathon, not a sprint.
The process tests your endurance. Your sufferance. Your stamina. Your resilience. Your durability. It tests your ability to exert yourself for a long period of time. It tests your ability to withstand pain and fatigue. It tests your elasticity.
The process tests your resoluteness. You must pass the test.
(2) The Process Grows Your Experience.
That experience, in turn, brings maturity. Many people suffer from ‘landing-place syndrome.’ If you fix your eyes only on your destination and marshal every ounce of your energy to get there, you’ll sure miss the things that happen along the way. It’s not the road on which you travel that really matters. It’s not where you get to that really matters. What really matters is who and what you become along the way. The process does not only give you the thrill; it also gives you the frills.
Instant coffee, fast food, touch screen, just-a-click paradigm, and microwave attitude can rob you of the invaluable lessons you could glean as you journey along the way. These lessons help you to grow. They give you experience. What you read in books, or hear in seminars and conferences, or watch in podcasts or CDs or live stream – are years of experiences. You can learn from their stories, but they won’t immune you from gleaning your own experience. Neither will they exonerate you from the pains of growth.
Growth isn’t the outcome of just one incidence. Growth is the summation of incremental, gradual processes. It is the growth you gain through ‘the process’ that others can access via advise. That gives you mentoring advantage. You can’t give what you don’t have. Your greatest opportunities for growth typically come from your most painful experiences. Growth takes place in the crucible of pain.
The process grows your experience. Never resist that growth.
(3) The Process Awakens Your Explorer.
Historical and contemporary evidences abound. Case in point: Jephthah. Born out of wedlock, refused any portion of family inheritance and disenfranchised in Jewish society, he left to another city to work on his fighting skills and became a mighty warrior.
‘The process’ compels you to evolve. It reveals and amplifies the hidden capacities and untapped competences in you. It conditions you to be an ‘inx-plorer.’ It is during your winter seasons that you encounter your hidden selves.
The process also forces you to be more creative, inventive, innovative, analytical and resourceful. That way, the process awakens the ex-plorer in you.
(4) The Process Aligns Your People.
Here’s a principle to live by: Don’t dismiss every person; but don’t also believe every person. The process reveals those around you and those who come to you. You may not always easily discern people’s motives. The process is Nature’s way of allowing you to see the façade behind the sweet tongue. Use it. It’s a potent tool for unmasking the Lagbajas’ deceptive mien. It exposes the real person without Mary Kay’s pancake, Brazilian hair, fixed nails, and silicone implants. Test people. God did it, and still does:
‘..The Lord your God led you…forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart…’
People can cover stuff for a long time, but the process generally forces the truth to the surface. Your genuine friends and helpers will not walk away from you when you’re going through ‘the process.’ They will stick with you through it all.
John Chapter 6 opens. Jesus has over 5,000 people following Him.
John Chapter 6 closes. Jesus has 12 people remaining with Him.
Time separates the chaff from the wheat . Allow ‘the process’ to process your real buddies.
The process aligns your people. Keep your eyes open.
(5) The Process Builds Your Sensitivity.
Only the broken are experts at mending.
It is easy to criticize and condemn other when you have not worn their shoes, or walked in them. When you sit where people sit, and experience what they experience, you would be less critical. People who go through real stuff criticize less. Nature destroys our propensity for negative criticism by ‘forcing’ us to walk where others walk. This seems to be the reason why people build social enterprises that resonate with their current or past struggles. They want to help others who are experiencing what they are experiencing, or have experienced. Because there is a common language that both the social entrepreneur and his/her focus group both speak and understand.
The Son of God had to become the son of man. His humanity is the credential which qualifies Him to be our Advocate. He walked where we walk. He felt what we feel. He’s Emmanuel – God with us. People whom life has processed are more empathetic of others. Sympathy is feeling for the person, but empathy is feeling with the person. It’s a sine qua non for effective interpersonal relationship. You need it to navigate life.
The process builds in you ’empathetic sensitivity.’
So, will you embrace the process? Will you fight or flight? Will you cave in to fatalism, or strut on with optimism? When the sea rages and tidal fury tosses your boat, will your anchor drift or will it firmly remain?
Will you embrace the process?
Will you embrace the journey towards achieving your dreams?
What have you personally learnt on the journey towards fulfilling your dreams? What is your experience? How has it helped you? Please post your comments here.