Solo hiking allows you to tune into nature. You can hear her voice when you have the world to yourself and if you’re lucky, those messages resonate. Below are just a few things that surfaced on a recent hike. Yesterday’s message was about following your dream and sometimes we put everyone and everything else in line ahead of those dreams when in all likelihood, chasing down that dream would benefit all the everyone’s and everything’s in your world.

If you follow a career path or a life choice that you aren’t passionate about because you think it’s the safest choice, or the one you’re supposed to follow, make sure you understand that it guarantees nothing. The safe choice does not guarantee ease and success.

You can still fail when you’re doing something that you aren’t passionate about. You can still fail when you’re following the path that you think you’re supposed to follow. You can weigh the odds, attend the right school, marry the right person, live in the right neighborhood. You can do all the right things and still fail. The safe road doesn’t guarantee happiness. You can take the easy way and still be unhappy, miserable, empty, vacant.

Sometimes – most times – following your dream is the more difficult path. It has highs and lows and no certitude. A dream worth chasing is scary and challenging. A dream worth chasing will cause you to question yourself and if you chase it even if you fail, you win.

Winning doesn’t always look like winning. Sometimes life’s wins are masked by failure.

If you have a dream why not go for your dream and follow your passion and live the life the way you want it to be? Because if you fail, you will have at least failed doing something you loved.

Believe in yourself enough to try. The safe path will always be there.

The same goes with the people in your life. If you are working for a person or organization that doesn’t value you, then you owe it to yourself to keep searching for the ones who will. You don’t have to accept their interpretation of your worth. You don’t have to keep anyone in your life who brings you down, who is threatened by your strength or blinded by your light.

Don’t dim your light for anyone.

Play by the rules that you’re morally required to play by and the ones that makes sense for you. Don’t spend your valuable time following someone else’s rules and path if those rules don’t serve you. Your life is your own. Your success is up to you. So is your happiness.

It’s ok to be selective and exclusive. It’s ok to have hundreds of friends and contacts – or even thousands. It’s also ok to have a handful.

External validation is not as valuable as internal validation. If you’ve got those two imposters reversed then perhaps your priorities are skewed.

Believe in yourself and value every breath you take. Don’t allow all the external noise to drown out your internal voice. You inherently know what is right for you. Tune in and listen to your internal voice and then name it and claim it. If you are unable to name what you want, what your goal is, or your dream is – how can you possibly claim it? Name it and then claim it.

If you fail that just means you’re one step closer to success.

Make your life meaningful, make your message meaningful, make your personal mission statement meaningful because you are meaningful. You have meaning.

If you have a dream chase after it. You’ll either catch it or you won’t. So why not try?

Make it meaningful.

~ Haven

Photo taken by the author at the peak of a mountain she was told she wouldn’t be able to summit, wearing the hiking boots she bought to celebrate moving to her forever home – a dream she chased and fought for while some told her she was making a mistake because it was too risky.