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When you don't know where to go, hop on a Train

Where are your dreams leading you?

Dreams, hopes, goals, and visions of the future. We're constantly being fed the old trope of, "follow your dreams." But no one tells us which dream to follow, or how to even begin the process of chasing something as ambiguous as a hope. Visions are vague, at best. And goals mean nothing if you don't actively follow steps to achieve them. But let's face it. When it comes to what you want for your future, everyone else is happy to grant you their blessings, so long as nothing more is required.

Too close to home?

Following my dreams has always been something unattainable. At least, that's how I thought about them. As a writer, artist, creator, or whatever label you want to give people like me, it's hard to know how to pursue my goals. This is mainly because I have too many dreams to possibly be able to chase all of them at once. I have to narrow down which of the futures I wish to chase, and then suffer all the uncertainty and instability that comes with artistry. When you choose to revoke the traditional path, you’re essentially setting yourself up for failure. Is there success to be had? Absolutely. But as a general rule, you’ll find yourself floundering for the first few years.

I don’t want to discourage anyone from chasing their dreams. In fact, you should definitely have the courage to go after whatever future you hope for. But there are a lot of things that the novice adventurer doesn’t know before embarking on a grand quest. Though you’re inspired by the stories of the great heroes who slayed dragons, there aren’t sonnets written about the hard years of laborious training they put in. So, when the dangerous do appear, there are two options: give up, or overcome.

I never was one to follow what society said was the acceptable path. This meant always finding it impossible to fit in with the common workplace flow. I’ve had many different jobs over the years, and none that I enjoyed. After finally landing that full-time job with a great pay, I quit. Not because I couldn’t do it, but because I knew I wanted something more, and it was time I decided to put my dream before the social standard. For the first time, I stood at the station with ticket in hand and a resolve in my heart. Though I don’t know where this path will take me or whether I’ll be able to overcome, I hopped on the train with little more to my name than an idea of who I wanted to become.

If you’re standing on the platform too afraid to take the next step, it’s okay. Being hesitant is not a crime. I don’t want to have to compromise; I don’t want people to worry about me; I don’t want to be destitute; I don’t want to disappoint or let down my parents; I don’t want to struggle to stay afloat forever. Whatever is holding you back, there’s no shame in staying away from the train station. However, if you have a dream or goal you want to achieve, at some point you’ll have to make a choice.

I can’t tell you what steps to take to fulfill your hope. I’m still figuring it out for myself. There’s so much I don’t know, and many mistakes I have yet to make. But I can say this. When you don’t know where to go, hop on a train. You never know where your dreams will lead you, especially if you never take the time to follow them.

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