We all have dreams and ideas of the kind of life we want.
Ask any kid what they want to be when they grow up and they can usually tell you exactly what it is. Typically that changes into something new as they get older, but I’m sure we can all think back to that thing we really wanted to do, or even something right now that is calling us.
Did you pursue your dream? Are you pursuing it now?
It’s scary chasing a big dream or goal. You’ve got to be willing to go pretty far in order to get there. Sadly a lot of our dreams get thrown by the wayside when the going gets tough. I’m guilty of quitting at times. I’m not proud of it, but I’m not going to beat myself up over it.
But there were a handful of times in my life when I was willing to go a great distance to get what I wanted. In fact, I went half-way across the world to chase one of those dreams. It was one of the scariest and best things I have ever done.
It changed my life.
Like most teenagers, I had big dreams and unrealistic goals. Hey, nuthin’ wrong with that. If you’re in the early stages of your adult life I highly encourage you to dream big and be unrealistic. Hunt down your dreams and get ’em in an arm lock, don’t hold back.
Growing up in Wichita, Kansas, I was a super active kid with grand plans for everything that I got involved in. From gymnastics to Boy Scouts, martial arts to playing guitar, I was totally immersed in all that I did. Most often I was in way over my head, but somehow I always seemed to resurface in one piece with my usual optimistic grin.
So when I told my parents that I was going to Japan they just shook their heads and said, alright. Of course, there was a little more to it than that, but dammit! I said I was going to Japan so now I’m gonna figure out how to get myself there no matter what, okay?
So there I was, a young guy from Wichita (pre-beard) knowing barely a word of Japanese with only a few years of martial arts experience under my belt, thinking I’m going to be the next Chuck Norris.
Kicking off my dream in full glory.
My glorious dream and Japan’s reality had nothing in common. Reality hurts, but it speeds up the learning process.
I’m still not a professional martial arts instructor, but along the way, I did pick up a handful of black belts plus tons of experience. Living in Japan has led to other life-changing events; meeting my incredible wife, having two amazing kids, co-founding a kick-ass international company, and forging my existence in the world on my terms.
Because I was willing to go after my dream and hunt it down, my life has been curious, compelling, and gripping, both in Japan and overseas. Even today, I’m tracking down my next dream and trying to make it a reality.
“I’ve done almost everything I could possibly ever imagine doing, but I just know that there’s more.”
This blog is about my thoughts, ideas, and the lessons I’ve learned on my dream-chasing expeditions. I don’t have all the answers and I sure as hell don’t have life figured out. But hopefully, my writings can help inspire you to give more thought to chasing down your own dreams and building the life you want.
Thanks for reading and letting me share with you.