Rules of the Game

Your Harvest of Destiny:

by Mark Chironna, M.A., PhD –

“Shouldn’t I be farther along by now?” is a question more and more people are asking in an age of constant change and surprises where the only thing we can count on is uncertainty. The rules of the game of life have shifted dramatically since our grandparents and great-grandparents were in their prime. 
Do you ever wrestle with the frustration of feeling as if the dreams and goals you have for your life seem to remain completely out of reach no matter how long you have waited for them and how far you have stretched yourself to reach them? Have you ever felt the frustrations Kevin Costner’s character, Ray Kinsella, in “Field of Dreams” when he said, “I am 36 and I feel like I am becoming my father?” If you have, you are not alone, not by a long shot.

Frustration is at an all time high in today’s fast-paced world of shifting options and hidden opportunities. Finding the “flow” and getting in the “zone” for you personally can often be quite elusive and sometimes the harder you grasp for it, the more it slips through your fingers. When grandma and grandpa where your age, society was geared towards the “American Dream” that was prescribed and programmed into the consciousness and psyche of a generation, and everyone seemed to be tracking along the same lines.

But like Bob Dylan sang in the turbulent era of the ‘60’s, “The Times They Are A Changin…” lots of folk weren’t paying attention and didn’t quite know how to adapt, be flexible, be resilient and create new opportunities for themselves in the midst of change. So what did they do? They managed or suppressed their frustrations and lived from crisis to crisis never really creating the world they had dreamed of growing up. They were trying to slow down the world and return to a former time and place. However, it was moving at a speed that was faster than they anticipated, and they stopped dreaming new dreams because even the rules for dreaming had changed.

You cannot afford to put your dreams in someone else’s hands or you will watch your expectations of reality mismatch the reality of your expectations. A whole generation grew up observing lots of grown-ups in places of pain and disappointment as their dreams never materialized, and they vowed they wouldn’t live the same way, only to wake-up in the middle of their lives to experience exactly the same pain.

There is a generation alive today wrestling with broken dreams, having to cope with frustration, and living with the nagging question “shouldn’t I be farther along by now?” As a mentor-coach I can tell you it is almost epidemic. I can also tell you it doesn’t have to be! You can master your emotions, conquer your frustrations, harness your creativity, and create your future, even in a world and a society where nothing seems predictable anymore. As a matter of fact, you can leverage uncertainty for greater opportunity if you are really willing to become the authentic YOU that you were meant to be.

Here are 12 things you can do to gain mastery over your life and create the future you prefer:

1. Take a moment to honor where you are right now, no matter what, and embrace where you are as a gift with all that is present in the moment. 
2. Turn around and look at where you came from (your personal history), sort out what worked and what didn’t, be thankful for the life lessons you have learned and celebrate the fact that you made it this far. 
3. Let go of what is no longer “you,” no matter what anybody else thinks about it because it is time for you to live the life you were intended to live (if you need help letting go, find a competent counselor, therapist, or spiritual director). 
4. Start developing your new identity by getting in touch with your core values and what is most important to you in this season of your life. 
5. Ask your heart what is the missing piece that wants to emerge to connect you to your destiny, and once you know what that missing piece is… 
6. Ask God for it. 
7. Choose to believe that what you’re missing is missing you and that it already exists. 
8. Create a “dream team” of peers and mentors who are committed to support you in the pursuit of your life’s purpose, and to whom you can be accountable, and with whom you can create a pathway to your desired outcomes. 
9. Create a blueprint, a seed, of the future that wants to emerge in your life. 
10. Work that blueprint into the soil of your current reality, water it like a seed and then… 
11. Embrace the process of growth with all its stops and starts, trust the process, and honor the process…until you… 
12. Enjoy the process and watch your field of dreams yield your harvest of destiny.