The size of your success is measured by the strength of your desire; the size of your dream; and how you handle disappointments along the way.” – Robert Kiyosaki

The Fresh Start Syndrome

Happy New Year!! Excitement abounds at the start of a new year. Despite the myriad of unknowns and challenges, there is a palpable excitement that captivates us all at this time of the year. We call this the fresh start syndrome or F.S.S. We see our lives through the lens of opportunities and possibilities, vision and goals, achievements, and accomplishments. We set up our best-laid plans and aim for the moon like President John F. Kennedy in 1961 when he made his pitch to Congress insisting that landing a man on the moon should become the commitment of the nation at that time. But this syndrome, while causing heightened excitement and expectation, tends to fade come March.

By Design

With the compendium of dreams, goals, opportunities, and possibilities we carry into 2021, we cannot ignore the need for systems to help us reach our determined place by the end of the year. These necessities helped to realize in 1969 the seemingly impossible goal JFK placed before congress nine years earlier. From JFK’s ambitious goal to the systems (including tools) implemented by NASA, we learn no one drifts into the realization of a dream. It happens by design. I believe that a dream or goal is achieved piecemeal. That means, taking steps each day, no matter how small the steps are, is how you achieve success. To wit, dreams, goals, and opportunities are actualized through the conduits of hard work, endurance, and encouragement.  

Looking Ahead

After 2020, I have learned that dreams don’t have to die because the landscape of life changes negatively. Dreams may be delayed, but if faith, hope, and determination still exist, dreams can still come to pass. This is why I look into 2021 with promise and enthusiasm. 

The Road map 

As we travel this month together with the acronym D.R.E.A.M. as a guide, we will discover that the rest of our days can be the best of our days. Here are the weekly touchpoints:

Desire: How bad do you want it? Today

Relevant: Is it appropriate for this time? January 14th

Endure: Will you outlast adversity? January 21st

Approach: What system will you implement? January 28th 

Motion/Move: Are you ready to begin? January 28th

Desires vs. Wishes

At face value, desires and wishes appear synonymous, but a microscopic look will reveal their incompatibility. While wishes are appealing, they are ultimately passive. There is no impetus to act. Those who wish, sit back and wait for life to happen. A wish requires no conviction or commitment. Wishes are more synonymous with resolutions than desires and a waste of valuable mental space. In contrast, desires are active and have depth. Those who desire don’t sit back and wait. They are gripped with intensity and pulsating energy stirring them to act (even sacrificially) in order to fulfill whatever is connected to the desire, either to their profit or detriment. The profit or detriment is contingent upon the focus or object of desire. Desires remove from you a cavalier approach to life by creating a “how bad do you want it?” atmosphere in you. And the most potent thing birthed by desire is discipline. As Napoleon Hill once said, “Desire is the starting point of all achievement.” 

How Bad Do You Want It?

“How Bad Do You Want It?” is an oft-repeated question in the world of fitness and sports. I have watched individuals and teams overcome immense odds to win, all because they wanted it badly enough. We see this desire to win as a basketball player dives on the floor for a loose ball or a soccer player rises above all other players to head the ball into the net and clinch the winning goal. You can find it in the student staying up late reading to understand a difficult topic in class. It is visible in the person who works and goes to school to better their lives. It is displayed by the person who eliminates eating out and buying coffee every day to pay off debt and save for the future. I have seen it expressed by our church members through sacrificial giving of time, talent, and treasure to our recently completed building project. These desire-rich plays and acts remind us that without desire, talent and skill will not bring true and lasting success. Relating desires to success, Dr. John C. Maxwell put it best, “Successful and unsuccessful people do not vary greatly in their abilities. They vary in their desires to reach their potential.” 

Final thought: Wishes are feckless and make us anemic. Built on fantasy they lack the necessary oomph to extract our potential and bring our best selves to any endeavor. Contrarily, a desire will place you squarely in the cross hairs of reaching your goal. For the dream, goal, or aim you have this year, the question remains, How bad do you want it? If it is bad enough to get you moving in the direction of your dream, no matter the cost, your best is yet to come!

Keep on keeping on!

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