Today's post really hits home for me. Zoe from La Vie en Zoe is such an inspiration as she blogs about her study abroad travels and I'm honored to have her write this piece on The Darling Daily. While I was able to study abroad in Costa Rica for a month, I always dreamed of studying in Europe. Preparing for my upcoming 3 month trip to Italy is terrifying and exhilarating all at once. I've been working my tail end off to save up some money for the trip (80 hours, darlings. No wonder I've been M.I.A. lately!). While the hours can get overwhelming I just keep in mind that all the hard work will be worth it when I'm living my dream in Italia. Doubts be gone as they have no time or place here!
I wear this bracelet every day, and on it I have my mantra stamped.
“She believed she could, so she did.”
If a year ago you had told me that I would be living in a different country, speaking a different language, away from my parents and my beloved university, away from my sorority, my friends, and everything I knew, I would have laughed politely and called you crazy.
Here I am, friends. That crazy dream, that crazy fantasy, the nights I would lay awake thinking about France and baguettes, about traveling and seeing the world, those things are no longer dreams. They are very, very real.
It’s overwhelming to suddenly find yourself in the middle of one of your dreams. You can’t just wake up, you can’t just pinch yourself, and you can’t make it go away. It is exhilarating, breathtaking, magical, and terrifying. How do you do it?
It’s cheesy, I know. And it’s something that everyone will tell you a million times. My parents, my friends, mentors, teachers, counselors, everyone… they all told me that if I just believed in myself that I could do anything I dreamed I could. I didn’t understand them, what they meant, how it could be so easy. Just believe, and it’s real? When did my life become a fairy tale?
Believing is hard work. I’m not talking about believing in God, or in religion or science, or some other entity. I’m talking about believing in yourself, because you can’t fake it. You can’t say that you believe in yourself and not actually do it. It doesn’t work that way. You know when you’re lying.
You have to try. You may cry, scream, freak out, and panic. You will look for ways out, and you will feel intense emotions that you didn’t know existed in the deepest corners of your being. Keep working, keep trying, keep believing. Let yourself feel the fear, feel the pain, feel the emotions, the doubt, the worry. Do it anyway.
Believing isn’t just for the big stuff, like moving to a different country. It’s also necessary for the small things, like killing a spider, acing a test, or applying for a job.
You are stronger than you think you are. I promise you.
Finally, I’ve started believing in myself. It has been one seriously intense journey, and it’s a journey that I will never reach the end of, and that is okay. But I am believing in myself, in my abilities, and in my capacity to make the world what I want it to be.
You owe it to yourself to dream, to work, to believe. I believe in you. It’s about time that you do, too.
What is your dream? Share it with me, and we can believe together.