Part 3 | Strengths and Dreaming Big

VoiceFlowerLifeEDITMarch 4, 2016

5 Ideas, 3 Questions, and an Action

Five Ideas 

Remembering to focus on each step toward our dreams, as opposed to the final outcome, allows us to get out of our own way as we reach our goals. Focusing on the journey, not the destination, allows us to build, adapt, and evolve as opposed to force, resist, and control.

As we explore the path toward our best and greatest self, we need to remember that it will not be a straight-line pursuit…and that is a good thing! There will be endless adventures along the way—each one an opportunity to grow and learn and develop skills as we go.

That said, when we choose to take action, it’s wise to pursue our dreams in a way that allows us to enjoy the journey. This method produces a win/win situation: Our lives are enriched in real-time by the day-by-day process of working toward an ultimate goal.

As always, this process begins between our ears with our attitude. And, whether we want to acknowledge it or not, we do have choices about what we focus on. Instead of steering our minds continually toward setbacks and defeats, we can choose to view challenges as opportunities for learning and self-discovery.

A valuable mantra in this shift is this: Progress not perfection.

Three Questions

What did I want to be when I grew up?

Did I become that thing? Why or why not?

If I were to tell the people in my life today that I wanted to drop everything and pursue that (or another) dream from childhood, who would have my back?

An Action

Desired Result: Conquering Fear, Part One

Concrete Action: Chances are, we didn’t develop our fears overnight. Instead, we came by them honestly over years and years of direct experiences and observations that—one added to the next—amount to our worries, reservations, and terrors that we have today. Because these fear-thoughts were formed over time, conquering them and removing their power is, understandably, a part of a process—one which involves healing and growing and eventually results in an awakening.

That is, overcoming fear is not about “stopping fear” it’s about evolving past it—growing from the inside out, shifting the paradigm, and leading lives that are bigger than our fears. So, how do we do that? For starters, we do that by changing the thoughts we repeat about ourselves and, especially, about our fears. First step is naming the fear and looking at it. Once it is named, an action strategy can be employed, but not until then. Today’s action is easy, it involves writing down two sentences.

Part One: So, have you named the fear that holds you back, limits your greatness, or just bugs you? Grab a post it note, take a deep breath and write it down. When we write it down we can look at it outside of our minds, and the fear often looks silly or smaller when words are put around it. Now think about the opposite of that thought and write that down. For example, if your fear is that you are going to get sick, then the opposite of that would be that you are going to remain in perfect health. So, you now have two post its: one with fear and one with hope. Put them side-by-side and look at them simultaneously and repeat the “hope” sentence over and over again. Do this often and allow that language of hope to embed itself in your thinking—when done rigorously, this language of hope will replace the language of fear as it rises.

Be your greatness. Start. Do. Go.

Circle Photo

Zach Carlsen is the grateful lead blogger at

His strengths of Ideation, Connectedness, Input, Strategic, and Empathy have taken him all over the world. He is an inventor, athlete, joyous wanderer/wonderer, translator, poet, and Transformation Coach.

Connect with him:


Twitter: @zstrengthslife

Facebook: Zachary Carlsen

4 thoughts on “Part 3 | Strengths and Dreaming Big

  1. It’s interesting to look back on steps I’ve taken towards my goals. Definitely long-term objectives with steps that meandered but eventually got there. I really agree with you about us having choices every step of the way. We shape our lives with the small decisions (and the large) that we make along the way, and most times we have the choice to say yes or no. If we choose conscientiously, there may be setbacks and side roads but we will get to our goals (as long as they are realistic to start with).

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I always wanted to be a nurse. Ever since I can remember. There were detours and re-routes along the way, but I got there in the end. Had my journey been different, I may still have got there, but without the learnings and rich experiences my detours provided. Yes, it is about the journey 🙂
    BTW, I have nominated you for the RESPECT award, because I so, and you deserve it. It come with no hooks attached 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am humbled and grateful for your words, my friend. To learn of others’ journeys is an honor–I love feeling the energy and aliveness inside a community of life long seekers and thrivers. With gratitude and joy, Zach

      Liked by 1 person

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