In the previous blog, Chasing Waterfalls, we explored being intentional and purposeful in pursuit of our dreams. The truth is, for most people, dreams just remain dreams.
A dream is some vision or experience you have for a short period of time and then it escapes you because you don’t capture it. Sometimes we have a repeated dream, and so we remember it, but we don’t go any further than to initially wonder, “What did that mean?”
When I ask people why the dream is not evolving, most will give me “life interrupted” answers. “Life interrupted” answers point to someone else’s issues we are nursing instead of our own – or unexpected turns in life.
Here are some guidelines that have been helpful to me in getting out of the “life interrupted” cycle.
What does this situation/request for my time have to do with my life purpose or calling?
This question is important because there are many things we can do. The question is, should we be doing them?
There was a time that if I could do it, especially if it seemed to help someone else, I would do it. The result: they went away happy; but, ultimately, I was drained, and the things I needed to do were left undone.
Run away quickly from requests that are not a part of your purpose or calling.
Can you make a positive impact?
Is the timing right?
Don’t do the right thing in the wrong time. Timing is crucial to success.
Is this the vehicle for you to make the impact, or is there a better vehicle?
If the vehicle chosen doesn’t resonate with you, it still may not be a match.
If this is a viable vehicle for something you have been purposed or called to do, and you can make a positive impact, and the timing is right, the next questions is…
What am I really being asked or expected to do, and can I deliver within the timeframe set?
You need to know:
- What the person is specifically expecting your involvement to be,
- The estimated time involved, and
- The expected deliverable.
Why am I the person being asked to do this?
Were you asked because you are the person who would say yes? Is it because you are the person with the best skillset to do it? Or is it because everyone else they asked said no?
Sometimes life interruptions are personal and unexpected: sickness of a loved one we are responsible to care for, an undesired career shift, financial loss, divorce, and the list goes on.
Many times, though, life interruptions belong to someone else, and we have inserted ourselves into a place where we think we can help…but where we don’t belong.
We each have 24 hours in a day. Some people are intentional and purposeful, and they limit their “life interruptions”.
Others drift through their days. For them, some good things happen, but not intentionally and not of their highest calling. If I were to ask them why, their answer would probably be “life interruptions.”
Get intentional and purposeful.