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Do You Deserve a Better Life?

  • Dan Miller
  • Updated Jan 28, 2009
Do You Deserve a Better Life?

Here’s a question I received today:

Hi Dan:

I am sitting here working on my goals, but I am finding it very difficult, especially on my financial goals. I have put some numbers down with what I would like to make in one year and in five years, but I do not have a clue at this point how or what. At this point in the stage I still feel very lost and not sure of where I am going or what I will be doing. I don’t know if that is because of being beat down so much or what. I have been told so many times to get my head out of the clouds that I think I am starting to believe that. I so badly want to have this belief in myself, but I am finding it very hard. Do you have any recommendations to help me get past this? It is ingrained in my head that I have to find a good job to provide for my family and that is it. I know there is so much more for me, but I am scared to really let go and venture out. I hope you see where I am coming from. I want to move forward, but I am finding it very hard. What can I do to get past this? Even with network marketing I found this to be my problem. I saw what I could be, but I just wouldn’t let go of this fear I am holding onto. Thanks again so much for your help.

Dear Reader:

Your consternation is not uncommon. Everything in our culture teaches us to be "realistic" and "practical." We are taught to stay inside the lines in school and to stay on the sidewalk and off the grass on the way home. Being "responsible" seems to force us to forego dreams and just get a reasonable job. The how stops us before we get clear on the what. I couldn't start my own business because I don't have any money. I can't get a good job because I don't have a college degree. I can't help people because I can't even meet my own family's needs. We derail the clarity of our dreams by seeing why it won't work in advance. Now some people come by this trait very naturally (perhaps having the gift of skepticism or cynicism). For others it just comes as a result of life beating us down.

Here's the irony of what you have already done. Being in multiple business ventures and network marketing puts you a lot closer to the success you're looking for than if you had never tried anything unusual. Most people who end up extremely successful tried 4-5 ideas that did not work well before hitting their home-run. Sending for a business opportunity that turned out to be junk, taking a job that didn't work out, or buying a piece of real estate where you lost money, are all great ways to learn more about how you will ultimately be successful. Rick Pitino, the basketball coach, says that failure is the fertilizer for success. If you are pumping water from a desert well, you have to pour the little cup of water left there down the hole to wet the seal. Then you pump relentlessly without seeing any water for a very long time. But you can't stop -- if you stop the water may actually be two feet below the surface. You can't see it but your efforts are really paying off.

Here's what I want you to do at this point. Don' try to plan the methods for your success -- rather, just describe what success would mean for you. What would an ideal day be? How would you feel physically? What would you want to be contributing to your church, neighborhood and community? What would you like the image to be of you as a husband and daddy? What is an annual income you would need for the life you’re describing? You will find that as you are able to describe the what that the how will start to come into view in unexpected ways.

I learned this, at least, by my experiment; that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours. ~ from the "Conclusion" to Walden Henry David Thoreau

Published January 28, 2009

 Dan Miller is today's leading authority and personality on careers and 'Work You LoveTM'. As bestselling author of 48 Days To The Work You Love, and now No More Mondays, Dan reaches over a million people every month ia his newsletter, podcast, and blog with the best trends and opportunities in the workplace and small business. For more information, visit