Note from Tsh: I first met my friend Holley Gerth several years ago, and every time I’m around this woman, I walk away a bit lighter. I’ve never met anyone so obviously blessed with the gift of encouragement, so I’m honored to let her encourage all of us a bit today. I absolutely love her newest book (and even ordered it for a friend or two as soon as I finished it myself!), and you’ll get a chance to win a copy at the end of this post. Read on!
Our world tells us to be independent. We’re supposed to “pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps” (whatever that means). We hear stories of heroes who seem to do it all by themselves. We read self-help books. Yet all of that is ultimately a myth.
We need other people. I do. You do. We need each other.
That’s especially true when it comes to pursuing a dream in our lives. So let’s talk about who can be on your dream team.
There’s nothing new under the sun and wherever you’re going, someone else has already been there. Find someone who has pursued the dream that you have who can offer wisdom along the way. Or, if their journey isn’t the same path as yours, at least look for someone who has experience doing what it takes to complete a dream well: taking risks, building relationships, persevering.
Someone to encourage you
While a mentor is a few steps ahead of you, an encourager is someone who’s right by your side. Your journeys are somewhat parallel and she understands where you are now. You’re facing the same kind of struggles, celebrating similar victories, and when one of you has a bad day, the other can be a source of strength.
Someone you can encourage
We also need to pass on what we have to others. The person you encourage may just be starting out in her dream while you’re midway through yours. Perhaps she wants to grow in an area where you have experience. Or her spiritual faith might be just taking root while yours has gone a little deeper. Who can benefit from where you are now?
A cheering section
As I tackled a challenge, my life coach Denise Martin gave me the idea of setting up an “advisory board.” These women serve as a team who can review ideas, pray for me, and speak the truth to me no matter how hard it may be to hear at times. I love that each one brings a different perspective and their variety of strengths fills important gaps for me.
It’s just as important to know who not to have on your team. So let’s take a quick look at that, too.
- Avoid negative people as much as possible. They will shoot holes in your dream, get you discouraged, and distract you with problems you can’t fix.
- Be ready for the doubters. Many people will tell you that your dream is silly, foolish or will never work. Take those statements as compliments and proof that you’re disrupting the status quo.
- Stand guard against bullies. One step past the doubters stand the bullies—those who intentionally oppose your dream. Again, if you’ve got bullies it’s a pretty good sign that you’re doing something significant.
If the idea of having people share in your dreams leads to thoughts of, “I don’t know who I would ask to be on my team,” then you’re not alone.
Most people don’t have a group like this in their lives. And we all go through seasons and circumstances, such as a move, that impact our relationships.
If you have even two people in your life you can confide in, including family members, that’s more than most Americans, according to research. Cultivating these kinds of relationships takes time and intention but is definitely worth the investment.
Being connected and getting the encouragement you need always starts small. One phone call. One email. One conversation. What’s your dream? And who will you invite to share it? They will be a gift to you. And by letting them be part of your dream, you’re giving them a gift too.
We need each other. And life is simply better when we do it together.
Win a copy
The above is an excerpt from Holley’s book, You’re Made for a God-Sized Dream, and as part of our monthly book series, today Holley is offering TEN Simple Mom readers a chance to win a copy!
To enter your chance to win, leave any comment below this post. (If you’re reading this post via email, please click over to the original post and leave a comment on the blog.)
This giveaway is now closed. Check back on Sunday, March 31, for the winners!
Who do you need for your dreams to come true?