Tag Archives: #goals

DARE TO DREAM

I paused to look at a statue at the entrance to a ballpark located in South Carolina and thought about the thousands of young boys around the world who bravely stand ON GREEN DIAMONDS  and DARE TO DREAM of what might be…

Cast in bronze for all to see,

a young boy dared to dream.

He stood alone on the mound

but learned he was part of a TEAM.

BASEBALL…

It’s more than a game—it’s life

being played out on a field.

A field of dreams—ON GREEN DIAMONDS,

where men become boys and boys become men,

all speaking one universal language without

uttering a single word.

Our dreams in life will only become reality if we have the courage and passion to stay the course and never give up!

Tom Tatum – Author – 2019

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/author/tomtatum

Twitter: @TomTatumAuthor

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THE PERSON IN THE MIRROR

 

When things go wrong for us, we often look around to place the blame on others. It’s human nature to do this, but in reality, others may not have had anything to do with us falling short of our goals. We must look deeper if we are to find the real culprit(s).

It’s usually the last item we are willing to consider, but the one thing that might be preventing us from reaching the level of success we desire in life is often the person we see when we look into a mirror. That’s right—you and me!

So, instead of wasting time looking for reasons to blame others, have a pep-talk with the person in the mirror and then get back on road to success. Identify and work on what caused the less-than-desired results and always, always,

BELIEVE IN YOURSELF.

Tom Tatum – Author – 2017

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/author/tomtatum

Twitter: @TomTatumAuthor  LinkedIn: TomTatum1

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JOURNEY TO LIFE’S SUMMIT

JourneyToLifesSummit

As I sat quietly pondering life—past, present, and future, I thought about the mountain(s) we face as we journey through life. Yes, life is like climbing a mountain to the summit. Some folks may climb more than one in their lifetime, but all of us have at least one.

Although there are many paths leading to life’s summit, we want to choose the best one. We research the possibilities, seek advice, and try to plan the perfect route in order to minimize the difficulties we may face along the way. The cliffs, slippery slopes, and many unknown dangers that may be encountered along the way make the decision difficult, but when we finally decide on the “ideal” path, it’s time to start climbing.

Most folks start in the valley and work their way up to the summit by taking one-step at a time. Sometimes what we visualized as we were making plans is not the path we actually traverse. We often must make midcourse adjustments and hear our internal GPS voice saying, “Recalculating!” However, we must not let that voice frustrate us because, as cited earlier, there are multiple paths that will lead to the summit.

The journey may be difficult and some days will be better than others, but we must stay the course. It takes discipline, courage, and endurance to make it to life’s summit, but you must keep climbing—it’s your mountain—your challenge in life and no one can do it for you.

The closer you get to the summit, the more difficult the climb becomes, which can be frustrating. You work hard, but the summit doesn’t appear to get any closer. The secret is not to look at how far you are from the summit, but to thank God each day for how far you’ve come from the valley below.

JOURNEY TO LIFE’S SUMMIT

I stood in the valley looking up.

There before me my summit rose high.

Covered with snow, it seemed far away,

But the journey there is mine they say.

 

I started to climb as a young child.

I sensed no danger and had no fear.

All I saw was beauty all around,

And the world I saw was my playground.

 

With the first plateau beneath my feet,

I looked back to see from where I came.

My childhood days passed like a warm breeze,

And teen years of life appeared with ease.

 

Even though my path grew steeper here,

Climbing seemed much easier for me.

I grew stronger with each step I took,

With impatience, my whole body shook.

 

On plateau number two, I stood tall.

Life had changed, for I became a man.

No longer able to be carefree,

For two kids I bounce upon my knee.

 

The sights before me are different now,

For I have reached plateau number three.

My kids now grown with kids of their own,

But warm thoughts of them still linger on.

 

As I stopped on plateau number four,

My path had narrowed and fear moved in.

I stood on ice with no trees to see,

And clouds concealed my valley below.

 

I’ve come a long way through thick and thin.

Each year has been filled with ups and downs!

Though I had more that I wished to say,

The cold damp air was too harsh this day.

 

My family has grown smaller with time,

As God called loved ones to be with Him.

But some have left without a goodbye,

For never did we see eye-to-eye.

 

Things are not the same in this high place,

But Frost did write, “I have miles to go…”

Doubts grow as my summit draws near,

And I wonder if I’ll find peace there.

 

The air I breathe is somewhat thin as

Light shines bright from my summit above.

I thank God for showing me the way,

And pray He will guide me through each day.

 

My journey near done, I wish for you,

That your days on earth be full of joy,

That the paths you choose are always true,

And for God’s light to shine upon you.

 

As you stand tall upon your summit,

Cast your eyes to the valley below,

For you climbed the mountain meant for you,

Which many said you could never do.

Tom Tatum – Author – 2016

Do you know where this monument is located?

JourneyToLifesSummit1

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/author/tomtatum

Twitter: @TomTatumAuthor  LinkedIn: TomTatum1

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YOUR DREAM BEYOND THE WALL

Let me start by saying I think it is wonderful when anyone achieves his/her dream in life. It doesn’t happen by chance; it requires a lot of hard work, passion, ability, and sacrifices to make it become a reality—maybe even a little luck to boot! Their accomplishments are certainly commendable because they never gave up. They faced many walls and succeeded. Congratulations!

However, for many others, pursuing a dream in life is much like playing a game—sometimes we win—sometimes we lose. No one ever said turning a life-long dream into reality was going to be easy. It’s great when we are successful, but many of us have to learn how to cope with disappointments.

We’ve all heard things like: we should never give up; the next door will be the one; keep trying; don’t believe it when others tell you it’s impossible, etc. Those are very positive-well-meaning-encouraging comments. I not only agree with them; I also say them because I believe them.

However, when I look at things realistically, I know pursuing a dream requires making a series of midcourse adjustments and “game-changing” decisions along the way. Although “staying the course” may work very well for many folks, it may not always be the best option for everyone.

What? I can’t believe I just wrote that! Have I turned into Chicken Little in my old age?

No, the sky is not falling, and I’m not Chicken Little either, but the statement is true in many cases. Many of us reach aTimeinLife when what we have worked so hard to become or do in life may not be possible to achieve. Saying it nicely, sometimes things just happen, and often times, they are beyond our control. I know because I’ve been there—many times. The path to our dream in life involves a long journey with many twists, turns, and “brick walls” that can make achieving them very difficult, although not impossible.

When reality comes knocking on our door, we must decide whether to continue playing the game the same way hoping things will improve, alter our strategy to achieve better results, or try doing something completely different. Being flexible and making adjustments during the game can actually be a good thing. In fact, that’s what life is all about—making decisions and necessary adjustments—finding ways to topple the “brick walls” we encounter.

To clarify what I mean, allow me to share a true story about John Dalton (not his real name).

John spent the first eighteen years of his life pursuing a dream to play major league baseball. He had big plans for making his dream become reality. He worked hard, gave it his best each year, made tremendous sacrifices, and battled through injuries because he was determined to fulfill his childhood dream. He was doing everything right. People in his community even encouraged him by telling him he was a great baseball player—he had natural ability—God had given him a special gift. Such comments helped John believe in himself and his dream, which was definitely a good thing.

When John was a senior in high school, a Division 1 university sent a scout to watch him pitch. It was late in the season, but John had remained hopeful he could make his dream in life come true because he was playing well. This was his first opportunity to display his baseball talents in front of an interested scout; it was his moment to put his special gift on display. The many years of blood, sweat, and tears pursuing his dream had come down to a single performance during one game. It was John’s judgment day for his life-long dream.

Unfortunately, John had a miserable outing and only pitched three innings before the coach had to take him out of the game. His “spotlight” performance did not reveal his true talent. What happened to John that day is anybody’s guess, but the result was he didn’t receive any scholarship offers to play college baseball. Reality was knocking on John’s door. He kept fighting a mental “go or no-go” battle to keep his dream alive, but time was not on his side.

His best friend Derrick said,

“Bo, you have to face the fact that you just aren’t good enough to play college baseball, and you better forget about playing big-league ball too. You need to start looking for something else to do in life.”

Derrick’s remark sent John into a downward spiral until he hit rock bottom. Reality had not only knocked on his door; it came into his room and punched him in his stomach. John’s dream was slipping away and he felt Derrick had betrayed him at a time when he most needed his friend’s support. The forbidden word “failure” entered John’s mind for the first time and his dream in life was quickly turning into a nightmare of reality. He was confused, dejected, and felt all alone. He didn’t know what to do next.

Well, Derrick actually was being supportive of John. When the shock of Derrick’s remarks finally wore off, John realized Derrick was right. In his cold-crude-negative manner, Derrick had actually encouraged John to stop wasting time and to start pursuing a different game in life—to make adjustments.

It wasn’t easy, but that’s exactly what John did—he made some tough decisions and changed his game. He chose to start pursuing a degree in engineering and wanted to become a pilot in the Air Force. He played the engineering game well, but the pilot thing never materialized. John’s less than 20/20 vision was another dream killer—he never became a pilot. Another dream vanished for reasons beyond John’s control.

John completed his “desk-flying” military commitment and started his engineering career with a large corporation. He worked hard, advanced through management levels, and retired thirty years later. Although John never achieved two of his major dreams in life, his game-changing decision to pursue an engineering career proved successful.

After John retired, he began reflecting on his life and realized the vicissitudes he experienced during his journey had provided him with valuable knowledge about life. He started pursuing another dream to help others by sharing his knowledge through writing inspirational/motivational novels and articles about the game of life. He felt helping those who were willing to learn from his life-lessons was the best use of his talents—it was God’s plan for him all along. He had to learn hard lessons before he could effectively help others.

When asked if he had any regrets about spending all those years chasing his dream to play major league baseball, John smiled and gave this response:

“Should I have regrets? God blessed me with a talent for baseball and I developed it to the best of my abilities. Yes, it was my dream—my plan to play in the majors. Unfortunately, it just wasn’t God’s plan for me. His plan was for me to use my baseball talents to coach youth and help them pursue their dreams. I’ve done that and it has been a blessing for me. If I could do everything all over again, I wouldn’t change a thing. Regrets? I don’t have a one!”

So, what is the point of John’s story? The point is that all of us need to have dreams in life, and we should pursue those dreams with passion and courage. It’s wonderful when our dreams come to fruition. However, we should also be willing to recognize that having backup plans are also important in case things go awry. It’s not the end of the world if they do; it just requires a change in direction.

One significant thing to understand about John’s experiences is that he didn’t fail to achieve his dreams. Instead, he simply made mid-course adjustments in life to pursue something different. Bottom line, John actually succeeded.

Part of being successful in life is recognizing our limitations and not being afraid to alter our dreams when it becomes the best option. Just because we have dreams in life doesn’t mean we possess the talent, abilities, or luck to make them happen. The cliché about continuously beating your head against a brick wall expecting different results each time isn’t a crazy statement. If you don’t alter your strategy when trying to topple the brick wall, the only thing you will have at the end of the day is a horrible headache.

YourDreamBrickwall2

When pursuing your dreams, be willing to adjust your strategy or accept the fact that you may not be able to knock the wall down. Changing your dream is not an acceptance of failure; it’s intelligently recognizing that you need to spend your time pursuing a different dream. You only fail if you decide to do nothing or give up completely. Move on with your life by making adjustments that are right for you. Then, hold your head high and celebrate your successes!

You Can—you WILL achieve your dreams in life!

Consider following John Dalton’s recommendation:

“If you want to be inspired to pursue your dreams in life or to help someone else, I recommend you read On Green Diamonds: Pursuing a Dream. This clean story features a young boy learning life-lessons while pursuing his dream with the help of a dedicated mentor. The plot is wholesome, thought provoking, and filled with practical content for all age groups—teens, parents, friends, and coaches. It’s available at the Amazon author link below. Read it and share the experience. Someone out there is in need of your help.”

Tom Tatum – Author – 2016

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/author/tomtatum

Twitter: @TomTatumAuthor LinkedIn: TomTatum1

Facebook page: Tom Tatum novels