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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

D.R.E.A.M.S. series: D is for Determination

Welcome to week one of my 6-week series on making your dreams come true! This week we are exploring determination, the first thing moms need to achieve their dreams.

After my divorce, I had to quickly adjust to my new life. My main focus during that time was to make sure my children were going to be okay.  At the same time, I was focused on finishing my masters degree and I had dreams of starting a coaching business for ambitious women.  But I didn’t know how I would maintain our quality of life, stay in graduate school, work full-time, and start a business as a single mom.

There wasn’t anyone in my immediate circle of relatives or friends who had ever gone through a divorce and could share any firsthand experience or advice.  In the movies marital separations and divorce are often depicted to be manageable and fair.

Unlike in the movies, my ex-husband did not help financially support our children.  He didn’t pick up the kids like he was supposed to or help drive them to and from their activities and sports.  I soon figured out that he had an unusual gift of knowing exactly what to do to make my life more difficult than it needed to be.  That was the reality that I faced every day.

Despite my situation and how I was feeling on the inside, I kept smiling and was determined to not give up on the dreams in my heart.  Merriam-Webster defines determination as “a quality that makes you continue trying to do something that is difficult; the act of deciding something definitely and firmly”.  

My determination was what kept me writing papers until 2 a.m. on weekdays when I had to be at work the next day.  I dug deep inside until I found that place that wouldn’t allow me to quit no matter how much I felt like I couldn’t do it anymore.  In that place, I was able to push through my upper thresholds and achieve my dreams of starting a coaching business.

Determination was more than just a feeling that I had on the inside.  I had to make decisions and stick with them.  I decided that my dreams were bigger than my temporary feelings of frustration and overwhelm.  I wanted to show my kids that they can do anything if they want it badly enough and are willing to put in the work.

How badly do you want your dreams to come true?  When you know that you deserve more out of life and are determined to make it happen, you will become unstoppable.  Instead of wondering if it’s possible, you will know for sure that it’s just a matter of time.

Over the course of this week, set aside some time to think about how your determination has helped you get where you are today. Give yourself credit for your accomplishments along the way and get excited about what is yet to come.

Next week’s topic will be resourcefulness.  See you then!