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I have a question for you, a question that, to be honest, is quite intimidating. A question of thought – which way of thinking is better, dreaming big or being satisfied with small thoughts? Is it problematic to have expectations and to be afraid of failure? Or to have no expectations and simply except failure. Can dreamimg big be even more harmful than being unambitious. My whole life I expected myself to perform, to perform in the classroom, on the sports field and generally in all my endeavours.
I didn’t want to be your typical A-student type huge, but world-renowned huge. I probably had some predisposition to think so, because I was a fairly talented kid and worked adroitly at school, achieving the goals I set our for myself. Over time, however, my motivation turned into something unhealthy. I started believing that I was entitled to success, and I grew more and more frustrated as I faced the real world. Well, the truth is I didn’t face it a lot until arriving in grade 10, where my safe bubble of success was going to be popped.
The first ominous sign came when I didn’t get anywhere close to a perfect score for a maths test. I received a respective score, but it wasn’t up to my expectation. Which seems pretty logical now as the work load grew and heightened in difficulty, which proved to be an impediment to my progress. The pitfall, however, came soon after, when I received a failing grade in an Afrikaans test, a subject I absolutely loathed. I started to feel like a failure. Now you are probably wondering, “What does it have to do with dreaming big?” Here’s my answer: I always dreamt big, and this made me overlook tiny successes and feel entitled for admiration and victory.
I believe you can guess what happened next. I grew more and more frustrated, as I realized you had to work, and most often, work hard and long, to achieve what you wanted. You even had to withstand failure and overlook your losses – something I was not used to dealing with at all. The only opinion I had about failures is that they diminished my previous accomplishments, and my value as a person, and that successful people never have to deal with failure, or the fiendish feeling that comes along with it. Dreaming big is good, it helps a person set far-reaching goals and aim to do bold things. But it can only work if a person has healthy relationships with failure, tryouts and taking tiny steps. Success scarcely comes overnight.
For most of us it takes years to achieve, but no one wants to mention those years – they are a boring time of exhausting, plain and continuous hard work and dedication. Sounds bad enough for a movie, right? Don’t teach anyone to just dream big – teach them to dream big while taking small steps. And remember, success will not find you, that’s why it’s up to you to find it.
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