Without a clear-eyed view of what you have working for you, and against you, you have no ground upon which to stand from which to move towards your dreams. The courage to dream is just a pipe dream unless you develop the courage to see your current reality. Unfortunately, there are powerful psychological defenses–such as rationalization, denial, blame, and projection–which can keep you from clearly seeing your strengths, challenges and growth opportunities.
The courage to see current reality means taking 100% responsibility for your life, no matter what. If you wish to know your greatest resource, then look into a mirror. If you wish to meet the opponent who most often stands in your way, then keep looking into that mirror. You are both: your greatest ally and your strongest enemy. In addition, of course, you do need to recognize the people who will support you, and also those who may hinder you. Fate may stack the deck for or against you as well. In the end, however, it is harnessing your heart and facing “what is” with courage that will help you chart the course to your desired destination. This is not a just a feel-good, all-too-easy truth. There are those who will go so far as to risk the possibility of death, because a life with honor, justice, and dignity is what they hold closest to their hearts.
To more clearly see your current reality, there are four powerful questions you can begin to ask of yourself and those around you. The first is, “What are the top two things to celebrate about my life right now?” The second key question is, “What are the top one or two things that are wrong, that need to be addressed or fixed?” The third question is, “What is the one thing that is missing that, if added, would make things work better?” And, finally, the fourth important question is, “What is most confusing for me that, if clarified, would help provide meaningful focus?”
Feel free to expand on the list of strengths, talents, allies and resources you already have available to you. Draw on these as you take on some of the other acts of courage I have written about, such as the courage to confront, to be confronted, and to be vulnerable. Be here now…so you can get to where you want to go tomorrow!