So for this training, I wanted to bring a topic to you, which has been on my mind for a while now. The energy of the world has gone “flat-lined.” There are lots of people out there living through caffeine, or through those energy drinks, or anything else that they can do to get themselves motivated, get themselves pumped to do the next thing. It's a little alarming…
Somehow we are not able to just have natural energy, or natural buoyancy, to go about our day and make our impact and generate the income that we need to sustain ourselves and to sustain our businesses.
So today I wanted to chat with you a little bit about how do we find the internal fire; how do we find the internal passion to move forward and do the things that we want to do.
Today we’re talking about how to reach your dreams.
So I got here today after having served in the Marine Corps for nearly 20 years as an F-18 fighter pilot, among other things. I got here just like everyone else… You have a dream, you fight hard, you stumbled, you have obstacles, ups and downs, good moments, bad moments, and in the end we end up in these moment in time when we are doing whatever it is that we're doing to sustain ourselves in the present.
My dream was a little particular as I was born and raised in Puerto Rico. My dad was a mechanic, and my mom was a housekeeper. Actually, both of them continue to do so to this day… Humble beginnings, but it was a happy home, a happy household. There was a lot of laughter, a lot of music, but things were tough everyday. We had to constantly figure out a way to make it day by day and that taught me something that I want to share with you today. I want to share with you how do you find the internal fire, that internal passion when you have nothing to go on. How do you get yourself to take action when it feels like you've reached the end of the road, or your day is just beginning and you just can't get yourself to get up, to get motivated and to get moving.
What I find is that a lot of times we lose the fire, or we lose the motivation to continue, mainly because of 2 reasons:
1. You're probably feeling like the odds are against you. You're facing what feels like a mountain that needs to be moved, and you need to push it out of the way. At this particular moment in time, it might seem as if that mountain is an insurmountable challenge… It feels as if you can't move it out of the way on your own.
2. Your vision for the future, or that dream that you're trying to reach for, is clouded.
What does that mean?
Basically, I know you have a vision for yourself… I know you have a vision for your business, for your family, for the things that you want to bring forth in the world. But at this moment in time your perspective, and the meaning you're giving to your present set of circumstances, are clouding your judgment and are clouding your vision, thus not allowing you to see clearly the place you're trying to reach.
If you don't know my story, I wanted to become a fighter pilot since I was an 8-year-old boy. I was obsessed with flying a fighter jet. I just thought it was the coolest thing anyone could ever do. I mean, how awesome would it be if I could be in that cockpit and zoom around at the speed of sound!
Then one day, my father took me to an airshow when the Blue Angels came to Puerto Rico. I think it was 1986 or so. That was the first year the Blue Angels were flying the brand new F-18 fighter jet. So, my dad and I go to this airshow and I was very young… I got my fingers through the fence of the airport and I could feel the roar, the thumping that those jets make as they accelerate their engines. My chest was just vibrating, but I couldn't see the planes yet; they were out of sight. Eventually I looked into the distance and my dad said, “Look, they're coming!” And I'm looking into the sky with wonder saying, “Where? Where are they?” And I could still feel that vibration in my chest with those jet engines just roaring towards me and I knew that something big and exciting was coming.
And when I finally caught my first glimpse of those beautiful blue and golden jets, it was almost like time slowed down and I experienced this moment of clarity… it was as if time had stopped. And I could actually see the fighter pilot as he was flying by… I could see his yellow helmet and it was almost like he looked at me and said, “Don't worry kid. You're going to be up here someday.”
That was one of the best moments of my life, when everything just stopped and I knew that if I just focused, if I just worked hard, if I just stayed driven and kept my eye on that dream that I wanted to accomplish, then I’d be victorious despite the odds, despite the big mountains that needed to be pushed, because I knew I could do it. I think a lot of us have that same dream, maybe not to fly a fighter jet when you were a kid, but you had some passion burning in you, some desire, something big that you wanted to accomplish.
But for some reason, there's this big mountain that's in front of you… and maybe you didn't get the help you needed to push it. Maybe for some reason, that vision got clouded over the years, because of life circumstances, because of finances, because of relationships, because of legal battles, all those things that happen to people which end up fueling behaviors of settling for a life less than what we truly wanted to accomplish. And that happens to everyone. In my case, the odds were against me, too. There were huge mountains to move and I needed a lot of help to reach my crazy dream!
So, what I want to share with you really is a couple of things that I did through all those years since I was 8 years old until today that has helped me to just push through those mountains, keep my fire and my passion alive and accomplish my dreams; even if I didn’t “make it” 100%, but at least I got really close to what I truly wanted. And needless to say, I ended up flying the fighter jet and I did it for many years.
The 2 things that I want to share with you today is how I was able to do all of that:
1. Focus. It has this insane power to get you where you want to be! For me, focus is the ability to say “no” to some things because when I say “no” to some things, I also say “yes” to others. I would like you to really exercise this behavior more in your life on a daily basis.
2. Ask for help. Doing this has an equal amount of power in helping you to realize your dream. Focusing and asking for help from people that love you, the people that support you, the people that believe in you, and they want you to succeed are the basic key ingredients to a lifetime of accomplishment and fulfillment. Make sure that you keep those relationships first and they are going to propel you to places you've never dreamed of. I promise you that. Focus and ask for help and you should be well on your way, better than ever before.
Lastly, I want to share with you a very popular phrase used in the Marine Corps. Marines use it quite often… especially fighter pilots. When you don't know what to do, or if you're a little lost, and maybe you need to gain a new perspective, they say this: “Big ears, little mouth.” What that means is, there's a lot of noise in the world. We get pulled in a million directions all the time. And we can lose our sense of focus, and our sense of being grounded, and our sense of being centered, not knowing what it is that we want to do. Sometimes it is good to just quiet down, open your ears and listen to yourself, and to your heart. What is your intuition telling you should be doing?
Also, listen to those that are experts in their field, your mentors, or those people that truly love you. They want what's best for you. And they want you to succeed.
So that my friends is how you realize your dreams.
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