Each heartbeat grew in intensity. I thought my heart was simply going to burst out of my chest. I kept fidgeting to distract myself, but my heart just kept pounding louder and harder. I felt the beads of sweat form on my brow. I was a complete mess. Sitting there in the audience, I wondered if the Quitter Conference was really for me. Then I heard Jon Acuff ask a question that grabbed my attention: “What do the voices in your head say?” A young lady in the audience replied,”Mine say I’m not smart enough.” A man in his fifties said “Mine tell me my dream is stupid.”
Upon hearing these answers, I instantly felt a little bit better. I knew I was not alone.
There was hope.
Jon then further explained “The problem is, as my friend Al Andrews says, nobody has a positive internal voice. Nobody’s voice says, ‘You sure are pretty enough. You are the best person to write that book.’ Instead, the voices tend to be full of lies. You’ve got to ignore them.”
I left the Quitter Conference with a sense of hope and a strange feeling of peace. I didn’t know what my passion was at this point, but I knew things were going to be all right.
About a month later, I rediscovered some kids’ stories I had written several years ago. I had dismissed them as nothing, just a waste of time. After hearing Jon’s presentation, I ignored the voices in my head. This time, I looked at the stories with an open mind. I remembered how I loved writing in school and realized I have a love for books. Over time, I realized writing was my passion.
I started a blog that focused on this “unknown” area of my life, my creative side. As I wrote everyday, I discovered one of my passions, in addition to writing, is to encourage and help others pursue their dreams. I’m sure there are others who are as miserable and confused as I was last summer.
I formed a Quitter meetup group, where Quitters can encourage and support each other while they pursue their dreams. It is a monthly group where we have a “brag table” to share victories and also find support for the many challenges that pop up when pursuing our dreams. We also share any useful tips, tricks or resources that might help others in their creative journey. I could not help but start the Quitter meetup group. I was called to start it.
I now realize that it took a nervous breakdown at the Quitter Conference in order to find a creative breakthrough. Otherwise, I might not have taken action. I ended up going to the second Quitter Conference and will be there at the third one in September, too. I hope to see you there or at one of our monthly Quitter meetups in Nashville. Learning you’re not alone can be a great way to start dreaming again.
What do you feel called to do but have been pushing aside?