of dreams and delays

delays are not denials

So much of daily life seems to have relocated to the fast lane. “Express” this, “instant” that. We want it all and we want it now. This phenomenon doesn’t seem life-altering when we’re talking about online shopping deliveries or gourmet microwave meals, but when the implicit mind-set filters through to how we approach our hopes, dreams, relationships, careers and overall life journey, things get tricky.

I am a chronic dreamer. From the “ideal” career or relationship to home or trip – I’m all over it and usually I’m also crafting away at the 5 year plan it all needs to fit into. Whether consciously or unconsciously my heart hopes for the things I have set it on and thanks to my incessant planning its hoping on a deadline. When this hope is deferred through life’s inevitable delays, curveballs and surprises my heart becomes vulnerable to a bad case of disappointment which so easily turns into bitterness, affecting (and infecting) every area of my life.

I was chatting to a friend of mine about this a couple of days ago. He is a bit older than I am and a lot wiser. The key concept that I took away from our conversation was character. My mom taught me to dream and then do something to make those dreams a reality. Life has taught me that I need a character that can sustain the dreams I want to live. The kind of character I’m talking about is formed and solidified over time – no “express” routes or shortcuts here.

Do I want all my dreams to come true now? In principle that would be amazing (and totally overwhelming), but in reality there is a more important question that needs to be answered: Do I have the character to sustain those dreams? The answer is: not yet.

So today I am giving thanks for the delays and the gift of time inherent in each of them: Time to become a version of myself that can steward the good things that lie ahead.

What are you giving thanks for today?

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