What your heart asks of you

As a coach, I hear many stories about dreams. Dreams always come from the heart. Not all of us seem to have been able to follow and realise our dreams. I intend to support clients to still do so, no matter how old, silly, ambitious or childish their dreams might seem to them. To me every dream, every vision and every desire is worth exploring and make manifest.

In ‘The Pilgrimage’ Paulo Coelho writes about dreams and about how and why we kill our dreams. ‘The Pilgrimage’ is a novel, based on a true story. What I am about to quote below is not scientific. The guide in the novel, Petrus, is saying all this to the main character, teaching him about ‘the good fight’. I find it so inspiring that I want to share it with you. I hope you will enjoy it and that it will inspire you too.

Paulo Coelho, from ‘The Pilgrimage’, p.50:

“The good fight is the one we fight because our heart asks it of us. In the heroic ages – at the time of the knights in armor – this was easy. There were lands to conquer and much to do. Today, though, the world has changed a lot, and the good fight has shifted from the battlefields to the fields within ourselves.

“The good fight is the one that’s fought in the name of our dreams. When we’re young and our dreams first explode inside of us with all of their force, we are very courageous, but we haven’t yet learned how to fight. With great effort, we learn how to fight, but by then we no longer have the courage to go into combat. So we turn ourselves and do battle within. We become our own worst enemy. We say that our dreams were childish, or too difficult to realise, or the result of our not having known enough about life. We kill our dreams because we are afraid to fight the good fight.” […]

“The first symptom of the process of killing our dreams is the lack of time […]. The busiest people I have known in my life always have time enough to do everything. Those who do nothing are always tired and pay no attention to the little amount of work they are required to do. They complain constantly that the day is too short. The truth is, they are afraid to fight the good fight.

“The second symptom of the death of our dreams lies in our certainties. Because we don’t want to see life as a grand adventure, we begin to think of ourselves as wise and fair and correct in asking so little of life. We look beyond the walls of our day-to-day existence, and we hear the sound of lances breaking, we smell the dust and the sweat, and we see the great defeats and the fire in the eyes of the warriors. But we never see the delight, the immense delight in the hearts of those who are engaged in the battle. For them, neither victory nor defeat is important; what’s important is only that they are fighting the good fight.

“And, finally, the third symptom of the passing of our dreams is peace. Life becomes a Sunday afternoon; we ask for nothing grand, and we cease to demand anything more than we are willing to give. In that state, we think of ourselves as being mature; we put aside the fantasies of our youth, and we seek personal and professional achievement. We are surprised when people our age say that they still want this or that out of life. But really, deep in our hearts, we know that what has happened is that we have renounced the battle for our dreams – we have refused to fight the good fight.” […]

“When we renounce our dreams and find peace, […] we go through a short period of tranquillity. But the dead dreams begin to rot within us and to infect our entire being. We become cruel to those around us, and then we begin to direct this cruelty against ourselves. That’s when illnesses and psychosis arise. What we sought to avoid in combat – disappointment and defeat – come upon us because of our cowardice. And one day, the dead, spoiled dreams make it difficult to breathe, and we actually seek death. It’s death that frees us from our certainties, from our work, and from that terrible peace of our Sunday afternoons.”

Do you recognise yourself in this?  Would you like to free yourself? It doesn’t need to be that rigorous like Paulo Coelho describes; there are other options besides death to free ourselves :-). With my support it is not that hard to still ‘fight the good fight’: it is never too late nor impossible to find the courage to take your dreams serious, and to make them come true.

If you could appreciate my help, please feel free to contact me. Let’s begin ‘the good fight’!

To reviving your dreams!

Miriam Aziz

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