One year ago today, we posted our first article on our new blog, Lessons in Loveliness. We’ve learned some important lessons in the past year ~ lessons we think apply to anyone who is trying to make a dream come true.
Listen to Your Calling. How wonderful that we are called in different directions! What would the world be without those who were called to the sciences, arts, technology, or education? Listen to that voice inside, what is it saying? “The things you are passionate about are not random. They are your calling.” ~ Fabienne Fredrickson
Do What You Love. Don’t do something because you want to get rich, get applause, or get famous. Lessons in Loveliness comes from our passion to live a beautiful life, to write about it, and to share our ideas with other people. “Do what you love. Know your own bone; gnaw at it, bury it, unearth it, and gnaw it still.” ~ Henry David Thoreau
Go For It. There are about a million good reasons not to do something. It’s not the right time, you don’t know enough about it, you’re scared, people will think it’s stupid, you might fail. Just remember that ordinary people, like you, accomplish amazing things every day. “What if I fail? Oh, but my darling, what if you fly!” ~ Erin Hanson
Learn All You Can. Once you’ve committed to something, study up on it like it’s your job, because it is. The library, the internet, and other people are great resources for anything you need to learn more about. Knowledge is power. “If you can’t see yourself doing anything else, and you have the drive and ambition, get the training and go for it.” ~ Kristin Chenoweth.
Don’t Quit. There are times when we pour our hearts into something only to hear crickets and a voice in our head that taunts, “If I couldn’t do better than that, I believe I’d just quit.” That voice can only be silenced by the sound of your own determination. “The difference in winning and losing is most often not quitting.” ~ Walt Disney.
Work with a Buddy. Had either of us launched into this project alone, we probably would have quit. By partnering with a like-minded friend, we had someone to hold us accountable, keep us focused, push us when motivation waned, and pick up the slack when needed. “Having a partner definitely allows you to take more risks.” ~ Arianna Huffington.
Appreciate Your Cheerleaders. We’re beyond grateful to have a squad of incredibly lovely people in our corner. (You know who you are!) When you’re trying to achieve something, you find out how much motivation one encouraging comment can provide. “The best kind of people are the ones that believe in you so much, you start to believe in you, too.” ~ Steve Maraboli
Develop Thick Skin. Of course, it’s disappointing when someone is critical of your work. It stings when people you care about don’t support you. These two sensitive gals are learning to put on their big girl panties and get over it. “What other people think of you is none of your business.” ~ Paulo Coelho
Stay Focused. It’s easy to get distracted, to think someone else is doing it better, to imitate instead of create. Things can get very foggy unless you stay true to who you are and what you’re trying to accomplish. “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” ~ Antoine de Saint-Exupery.
Keep an Open Mind. Without losing focus, remain open to refining, tweaking, and expanding your methods and goals. “An open mind leaves a chance for someone to drop a worthwhile thought in it.” ~ Mark Twain
Celebrate Small Victories. As middle school teachers, we know the power of positive reinforcement. We celebrated 100 blog visitors that grew to 14,700 blog visitors and 60 Facebook followers that grew to 600 Facebook followers. “Always keep a bottle of champagne in the fridge for special occasions. Sometimes the special occasion is that you’ve got a bottle of champagne in the fridge.” ~ Hester Browne
Dream Bigger. So far, this project of ours has been about as successful as we hoped it would be. We’re publishing twice a week. We’re getting more readers. We haven’t quit. When you start to feel a little success, it’s time to really lean in, to dream bigger, and work harder.“The big secret in life is that there is no big secret. Whatever your goal, you can get there if you’re willing to work.” ~ Oprah Winfrey
Think On These Things ~ Alicia and Natalie