Name a person who has achieved their dreams without making sacrifices along the way.
You can’t, can you?
That’s because there is no success without sacrifice. The two go together like peanut butter and jelly.
You have to ask, however, are those sacrifices worth it?
In some cases, they absolutely are. In others, probably not.
Here are 11 examples where the price you must pay is totally worth it if it means turning your dreams into reality.
1. Your comfort zone.
Your dreams aren’t going to fall into your lap. You must put yourself out there, be proactive, and take risks.
You’re going to feel uncomfortable at times when doing things that are unfamiliar or uncertain.
But, if your dream lay on the other side of discomfort, you have no choice but to go through it.
This will look different for each person. For one, it may mean speaking on the phone with people, setting meetings, and interacting face-to-face despite being a massive introvert.
For another, it could mean leaving the familiarity of their hometown to pursue an opportunity elsewhere.
2. Your ego.
You may think you have what it takes to get to where you want to go. You may think you have it all planned out.
But I guarantee you, you don’t yet have what it takes, and your plans are destined to change.
What’s more, the two ways you are most likely to gain what it takes and to improve your plans are to fail and to receive feedback.
Failure is your best teacher and often the only way you will learn how to do something better.
But even if you don’t fail at something, someone might see a way you could improve. They may offer that in the form of feedback, or it may come as criticism.
Either way, you need to be able to put your ego to one side to see the lesson in your failure or take on board what another person suggests.
Denying your failure or refusing to hear what the other person says are surefire ways to prevent forward steps on your journey.
3. Instant gratification.
Unless you win the lottery, you’re not going to be able to achieve your dream overnight (if money is even a big factor in that dream).
Even if you take a big step such as quitting your job, it will be followed by lots of smaller steps.
I don’t need to tell you that good things come to those who wait.
So, when you’re working hard toward a major life goal, you’re going to have to sacrifice that buzz you get from doing something easy or short.
And it’s not only that your dream will take a long time. You must also give up instant gratification in terms of pursuing temporary pleasures over your ultimate goal.
Most dreams require money, so you’ll need to reduce your outgoings to funnel funds into it. That means no fancy new clothes, no expensive vacations, fewer nights out or meals at restaurants.
Those things might lift your mood for a while, but the novelty soon fades.
If you want your dreams to come true, prioritize the longer-lasting feelings of accomplishment and fulfillment over short-term pleasures.
Is the life of an elite sportsperson convenient? Not in the least. There are early morning training sessions, travel around the country or the world, and competitions that conflict with your other lifestyle choices or duties.
Business professionals might have to get up early or stay up late to interact with people in different time zones.
Someone whose dream it is to build their own house might get pulled in all directions while trying to project manage, hold down a job, and look after kids.
Big dreams often limit your ability to be spontaneous. You might not be able to drop things at a moment’s notice because they are important to your dream. So, the rest of your life has to fit around those things.
It might sound obvious, but you will have to sacrifice a good chunk of your time to achieve the things you dream of.
That sacrifice is, however, well worth it. But not necessarily for the reasons you think.
Yes, the end goal is what you are ultimately aiming for, but there is a good chance that your dream involves doing something that you actually enjoy.
So, time spent on your goal is not time sacrificed at all. At least, you won’t see it that way.
If you’re honing your patisserie skills in the hope of one day opening a bakery of your own, you likely enjoy the process as much as the end result.
If you’re running a business, you probably enjoy the challenge of doing so and the things it involves.
If you want to excel at golf and turn pro one day, you sure as hell better enjoy playing golf or practicing at the range for hours and hours each week.
So, yes, you do have to sacrifice your time for your dream, but it’s 100% worth it when you get pleasure from the doing as much as you will from the succeeding.
6. Naysayers and energy vampires.
Whatever your dream may be, there will be those who put it down. They may say you can’t do it, or that it is not worth doing in the first place.
Sadly, you’re unlikely to be able to change their minds and get them on your side. Some people just live in the negative and can’t help but spread it to those around them.
But you don’t have to let them. It won’t always be a nice feeling at the time, but you can let go of these people and their pessimism.
Similarly, you may have to sacrifice relationships with people whose sole purpose seems to be to drain you of your lifeforce.
They may not seek to pooh-pooh your dreams, but they take up so much of your physical or emotional energy that you don’t have anything left to give in the pursuit of those dreams.
If you can, cut these people out altogether. If you can’t do that, learn to shield yourself from their negativity and drama.
7. Your need for approval.
What other people think of your dreams and how they view your success or failure is something you can and should let go of.
One of the most liberating mindset shifts you can make is to put what you think of yourself above what anyone else thinks of you.
The moment you do that, you take back the power you have been giving to others every time you’ve sought their approval or their validation.
And until you can do that, you’ll be bound to them and their opinions of your choices and actions. Their happiness and approval will come at the expense of your own happiness.
You will let them hold you back by prioritizing what they think over what you think.
Don’t do this. Make the sacrifice. Let go of your need to please others.
8. Your pride.
Some dreams will require you to give up a part of the lifestyle you currently enjoy. It may feel like your life is going backward.
For instance, you might need to move back in with your parents to put more money into pursuing your goals. Or it might not be that extreme—perhaps you just have to say no to the vacation all your friends are going on.
You may experience emotions such as shame or resentment, but these are caused by your ego rather than your actual circumstances.
If you can swallow your pride, you will find it easier to stay motivated when taking the necessary steps to get to where you want to be.
Similarly, your pride is a barrier to humility. And humility is necessary to see your weaknesses and feel willing to ask for help.
If you don’t let go of your pride, you may never learn better ways of doing things and thus get stuck on your path to success.
9. Financial security.
There’s no denying that money is important. And feeling somewhat secure in your financial position is good for your mental health.
However, many people put financial security above their dreams to the extent that they refuse to pursue them even if they live a fairly comfortable life.
They save and save and save, putting so much money aside for retirement or rainy days that they never feel able to take the leap and do the thing they are passionate about.
Dreams are expensive. One way or another, you’ll need to invest in yourself and the more practical aspects of doing whatever the thing is.
If you always put off doing it until you have X thousand in the bank, or you’ve paid off your mortgage, or your retirement nest egg is secure, chances are you’ll never do it.
Yes, be sensible with your money and don’t put yourself in financial hardship to pursue your dreams, but do be willing to spend money chasing them once you have a reasonable level of security.
Likewise, be willing to sacrifice your short-term earnings (in the form of a day job) for long-term financial and personal rewards once you have a safety net in place.
10. Your reputation.
Are you the partygoer?
Are you the hard-nosed boss?
Are you the sensible one?
Are you the conformist?
If you have a reputation as being a particular type of person AND that type of person doesn’t align with the dream you have set your sights on, you’re going to have to give up that reputation.
That can be hard to do, both in terms of getting people to believe you are different and actually feeling different in yourself.
But this type of sacrifice is well worth making because you most likely aren’t that person at heart, or you don’t want to be.
By shedding that skin and reimagining yourself in a new one, you will boost your chances of being taken seriously, and ultimately of achieving your goal in life.
11. The old you.
In truth, you’ll have to sacrifice the you of today and become the you of tomorrow.
The fact that your dreams remain dreams rather than realities shows that something needs to change.
But think of it as growth rather than change. Think of it as developing into the type of person who can take all the steps required to achieve what they set out to achieve.
The old you isn’t that person. The new you could be.
You may also like:
- If You Are Afraid To Follow Your Dreams, Read This
- 6 Ways To Know When To Follow And When To Give Up On Your Dreams
- 7 Effective Ways To Cope With A Crushed Dream
- 9 Habits Successful People Don’t Waste Their Time On (And Nor Should You)
- Successful People Never Allow These 12 Things To Stand In Their Way
- 7 Things Successful People Never Compromise On
- 32 Life Skills Proven To Skyrocket Your Success
- 11 traits of highly ambitious people (that prime them for success)
- 12 Things Disciplined People Do That Bring Them Success