Not long ago I did a small series of interviews called ‘Despite Dream Crushers‘. This series was developed to demonstrate that despite the fact that people we love and respect are not always on board with our dreams and goals in life, we can still achieve them anyway.
The interview consisted of four different questions, but two people chose to only answer one question from the interview, and I want to share those with you today.
Q. What Dream Of Yours Did Someone Try To Destroy?
A. Okiemute Omuta (Founder & CEO of DeQeo Consulting)
From a very young age, I developed an interest in science and technology. So when I was much younger, I would spend most of my time in solitude, just ripping things apart just so I could understand how they worked. My siblings used to call me “the opener” because I opened every and anything that worked.
A family friend wanted to inspire me to do more, and so he took me to the library of the university at which my father was a professor. During the tour at the faculty of engineering, I took a peek at the devices and machines that they had at one of the labs, and what I saw was very, very disappointing. The machines looked older than my father, and even though I was a kid, I knew what “modern” equipment should look like.
It was right there and then that I decided that I was not going to study in Nigeria. I thought to myself “If this is the equipment that will be used to teach me engineering, then I do not want to school in this country, not just this university.” Since then, my mind was set on studying abroad so much that after secondary school, I refused to write the national university entrance examinations.
I really like Okiemute’s answer for a few reasons.
First, he recognized that what was in front of him was not enough for him. I know many people who walk into a place of work or education and accept what is there – even if they know it will not help them achieve their dreams and goals – because the alternative (finding something new, going elsewhere, or travelling) would be too much effort.
Second, his dream was firmly in his mind. While many people might argue that not writing the exam was quite drastic, he is a man who stuck to his guns no matter what – and I respect that in a person. A person who can hold their dream in their mind is going to do what it takes to make it happen.
Q. Any Advice For People Dealing With Someone Who Is Trying To Destroy Their Dreams?
A. Steffiblack (Life/Career Coach and Kindness Advocate)
My advice is to follow your own gut instinct as long as it is thought out and practical. You have to understand both your strengths and weaknesses as a person and you also probably have to pay the bills.
So, if your dream will take time to make money, make sure you have set aside time for a role that pays while you pursue what you really want to do. Ultimately, we have to have good self-knowledge, work ethic and determination to make a dream come true.
As a life and career coach, I always try to help people understand themselves and move forward, strategically, in what is possible in their lives. I also encourage them to listen to their own intuition and not listen to everyone else’s advice. Most of us know what we are capable of and a coach or mentor can give good advice, but only a person knows what is best for them, so if that dream is important – Go For It!
I also like Steffi’s answer for a few reasons.
First, it is practical advice that will help you avoid a lot of discomfort as you go after your dreams. I have listened to many self help gurus talk about turning a new direction instantly. They have recommended leaving a job, selling a house, and venturing into your dreams without knowing where your next penny will come from. While I can respect that decision, and I think it may work for some people (especially because there is so much focus going towards the dream), I believe that having some way to keep a roof over your head (whatever kind of roof you want!) and food in your body is very important to stay motivated and productive. As long as you can ensure you will be fine, and you know that you have the motivation, desire, and persistence to go after your dreams, then – as Steffi says, Go For It!
Second, it is so important to tune into your intuition and follow it. When you follow your intuition with relationships, health, career, and everything else – despite what other people want – you make decisions that are good for you and your overall well-being.